The nightlife world lost a legend this week when DJ Frankie Knuckles died at the age of 59. Dubbed the “Godfather of House,” Knuckles played a major role role in spreading the percussive genre of dance music into the mainstream, changing the house music foundation forever.
A remixer, producer and Grammy winner, Knuckles first got his start in the ’70s, spinning at various New York nightclubs before moving to Chicago in 1977. There he turned out music at Warehouse , where he would begin his experimentations with dance music, mixing standard R&B and disco beats with a range of post-punk, reggae and ’80s Euro-synth. And just like that, a new kind of dance genre was born. Knuckles even gave it a name: house music.