3.1.2. Hedonistic Clubs

17 June 2021

In the decade following the Stonewall Riots, several legal hedonistic gay clubs opened in New York. The once-repressed clubs could finally offer liberation and celebration in their newly fought-for freedom. These clubs offered an intense brew of music, sex, dancing and drugs. One of those clubs, called the Sanctuary Club, was where one of the significant technical factors of 'House music’ started. Through Francis Grasso's experimentation with turntables, Grasso became the first known DJ to blend records using two turntables. In doing so, he changed how to play music, making it possible to fuse R&B with strange rock and complex African rhythms (Bidder, 2001, p. 2). There were no longer breaks between tracks, so people did not have to stop dancing. The music was continuous people would step on and off the dance floor when they wanted. This continuous flow of music created a physical representation of people to the mixing of the music; a continuous merge of new social situations would arise, including the sounds of the new tracks mixed into the prior. According to Bidder’s interview of West End Record label owner Mel Cheren; David Mancuso’s after-parties at his Manhattan loft apartment soon to be known as The Loft became one of the first parties where black, white, straight and gay people met together to have fun with each other (Bidder, 2001, p 2). The ideology of inclusiveness fought for at Stonewall Inn became the moral principle of The Loft. It was the initial inspiration for Paradise Garage, a club that, in its ten-year tenure, facilitated a space for the experimentation of music where thousands of diverse people could unite through dancing together. 

3.1.3. Paradise Garage