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The OXD Mirror: A Tribute To Chicago House And More New Music

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BY OCCUPY THE DISCO / JOSH APPELBAUM

Robert Owens: 'This Time'

Even though house music is as well known today as mainstream genres like pop, rock, and R&B, it has not always been so commonplace or well-regarded as it is in 2015. Chicago was one of the first hold outs for house music, where this new and evolving music style broke race and sexual orientation barriers in the 80s – bringing people together under this new form of rich, soulful dance music, and eventually spreading all over the world.  

London-based record label Midnight Riot, known for their compilations of original disco and house tracks along with classics and B-sides, have put together a really great album that pays tribute to Ron Hardy, the Music Box, and the formative years of Chicago House. The album mixes vintage material with tribute tracks from current artists and Chicago legends, like vocalist Robert Owens. Owens is Chicago House royalty; one of the few that has reserved his soulful vocal talents for dance music. ‘This Time’ is his excellent contribution to this Chicago-centric compilation, which features many queer artists like Owens himself, and the likes of The Cucarachas, The Carry Nation, Severino, Alinka & Shuan J Wright, and The Black Madonna.  

More new music, AFTER THE JUMP...

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The OXD Mirror: A Tribute to Frankie Knuckles and More New House Music

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BY OCCUPY THE DISCO / JOSH APPELBAUM

David Morales: 'Frankie's Tune'

One year ago, the world lost the man affectionately known as “the godfather of house music,” Frankie Knuckles.  With five singles hitting #1 on the Billboard dance charts, including “Tears” and “The Whistle Song,” and dozens of hit remixes for artists like Michael Jackson, Toni Braxton, and Lisa Stansfield, Knuckles’ impact was felt not only the airwaves but in the clubs.  He was one of the pioneers of house music along with childhood friend Larry Levan, and the phenomenon they created with their music transcended gay, straight, black or white clubs, uniting many under a shared love for this new dance music. 

Frankie was part of a collective called Def Mix with long time friend David Morales. In tribute to his late friend, Morales has released ‘Frankie’s Tune,’ a beautiful, soulful house track true to the style that Morales and Knuckles crafted together in their many years of producing. Tamra Keenan provides vocals on the track, backed by the signature Def Mix piano and percussion. It’s a tender reminder that house music isn’t just bass and beats, but can be a rather lush form of music from the soul, a legacy that Frankie was instrumental in fostering.

More new music, AFTER THE JUMP...

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The OXD Mirror: Sultry Vocal House Tracks From Brett Johnson, Human Life and More

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BY OCCUPY THE DISCO / JOSH APPELBAUM

Brett Johnson Featuring Mikey V: 'Falling'

Dallas-based DJ Brett Johnson might be an up-and-comer on the house music scene, but his new track with vocalist Mikey V (Velazquez) sounds as slick as some of the more well-known seasoned producers out there.  The smooth vocals from Velazquez accompany a sophisticated deep house beat that you can't help but 'fall' for.  The track acts as the first single off of Brett's The Bounce is Back EP, which is out now via Classic Music Company.  

More new music, AFTER THE JUMP...

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The OXD Mirror: Róisín Murphy's 'Gone Fishing' and More!

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BY OCCUPY THE DISCO / JOSH APPELBAUM

Róisín Murphy: 'Gone Fishing'

Róisín Murphy is one of those rare artists that can seamlessly float between different styles and yet always sound distinct and still play to her musical strengths.  From her early days in Moloko penning underground club hits like 'Sing It Back,' to her critically acclaimed electro pop masterpiece Overpowered, and more recently her Italo-pop/disco EP Mi Senti, her 20+ year career has earned her a loyal and rabid fan base.

Earlier this week, Murphy announced her first full-length album in 8 years, Hairless Toys, due out on May 11th.  The lead single is 'Gone Fishing,' a dreamy and dynamic song inspired by Paris is Burning.

Murphy says "[t]his song was written after I watched the film, having read an article which referenced it in a discussion about House Music's origins in black, gay culture. I was deeply moved by this film.....the culture was a flamboyant reaction to persecution and disillusionment, the imagination and bravery of these kids is simply awe-inspiring. I envisioned 'Gone Fishing' almost as a song from a Broadway musical version of this story. The making of one's own world,  a safer world and the creation of a new, better family in music or youth culture is a theme I touch upon elsewhere on my album Hairless Toys." 

More musical inspirations, AFTER THE JUMP...

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The OXD Mirror: Andy Butler Goes Solo, And Other New Music For The Week

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BY OCCUPY THE DISCO / JOSH APPELBAUM

Andy Butler is the mastermind behind the rotating disco house act Hercules and Love Affair, and the man behind the group's three full studio albums released between 2008-2014.  The group, comprised mostly made of LGBT performers (Butler himself, Antony Hegarty, Shaun J Wright, Kim Ann Foxman and Nomi Ruiz to name a few) brought back a  very queer sound to mainstream house music.  Though Butler has always acted as the "lead" for HALA, every song has always been a collective effort of the many artists that make up the group.  In 2015, Butler has set to break off on his own and produce under his own imprint.

Andy Butler: 'You Can Shine (Feat. Richard Kennedy)'

Debuting his first solo EP next month, Butler leads with recent tour mate Richard Kennedy, who acted as male vocal lead for the last Hercules and Love Affair world tour.  I had the pleasure of seeing this very sassy vocalist perform during that tour and his vocal chops and stage presence are combinations you don't see too often.  'You Can Shine' is an excellent club track, with some sounds reminiscent of Butler's HALA days as well as some new flavor injected.

Even more new music, AFTER THE JUMP...

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The OXD Mirror: Catch a Fever With Fiorious and Other Sizzling New Singles

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BY OCCUPY THE DISCO / JOSH APPELBAUM

Fiorious: 'Fever'

We first introduced you all to electro funk/disco/pop artist Fiorious back in 2012, and his queer disco sensibilities and New York style immediately struck a chord with us.  

The Bronx-born artist quit his day job as a pop music journalist and moved to Europe to start a music career of his own.  As a follow up to his 2012 self-titled album, Fiorious is prepping his Danceteria EP for release this month.  'Fever' is the first release from said EP - and combines some really fun funk and disco elements into an upbeat track.  I'm definitely looking forward to seeing what else this guy has in store for us in 2015, but for now you can grab this track as a free download here.

Fill your plate with more new music, AFTER THE JUMP...

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