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Fri Jul 13, 2018, 12:41 AM

On this day in 1979: Disco Demolition Night

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Reply On this day in 1979: Disco Demolition Night (Original post)
TheMightyFavog Friday OP
thucythucy Friday #1
Mister Ed Friday #2
thucythucy Friday #4
Archae Friday #8
thucythucy Friday #10
argyl Friday #6
BeyondGeography Friday #9
RGinNJ Friday #3
global1 Friday #5
blue-wave Friday #7

Response to TheMightyFavog (Original post)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 12:52 AM

1. I wonder how much of the "Disco sucks" mania

was anti-black and anti-gay sentiments, barely concealed.

Disco, after all, started out as a black and gay phenomenon. As opposed to rock, which by that time was mostly white, and brazenly heterosexist.

The culture wars have been with us for a long long time.

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Response to thucythucy (Reply #1)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 12:59 AM

2. I would say, approximately none.

Those of us who hated disco in those days practically worshiped Jimi Hendrix and David Bowie. Disco wasn't black music or gay music to us. It was just awful music.

'Cept for Donna Summer. I thought she was really good.

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Response to Mister Ed (Reply #2)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 01:12 AM

4. And the Brothers Johnson, who were also quite good.

Lots of Disco music was actually quite enjoyable.

And it got its start in gay venues, with mostly black and gay audiences, at least at its start.

Sure, there was a lot of crap as well, but the same could be said for white rock. Ted Nugent being a case in point.

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Response to thucythucy (Reply #4)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 06:41 AM

8. I still enjoy disco.

Lots of good tunes.

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Response to Archae (Reply #8)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 01:44 PM

10. Same here.

If you're interested, Mikal Gilmore has written an article on the origins of the backlash against disco. It's in his book "Night Beat" and it's called "Upstarts over & under the wall and into the territory's center." I don't have a link (but I do have the book). Just a sample quote:

"In the early '70s, disco's 'everybody's a star' mentality was genuinely liberating. It had the effect of empowering (and even briefly unifying) an audience of gays, blacks, and ethnics that had, for too long, been disdained or displaced by a rock world that had become overwhelmingly white..." Gilmore contrasts the centrality of dancers in disco (the very word comes from the fact that it was music played in clubs for people to dance to) as opposed to rock stars who had, by the early '70s, become mainly elitist virtuosos (think of all those interminable guitar and drum solos of 70s arena rock) and far removed from the day to day lives of many fans. Disco was one reaction to all this--punk rock (later on) was another.

Anyway, I remember disco with fondness, aside from some of the truly awful stuff. But then, there's truly awful stuff in all areas of art and music. Cough cough "Stairway to Heaven" cough cough.

Best wishes.

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Response to thucythucy (Reply #1)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 02:57 AM

6. I just didn't like it. And before it I hated "Frampton Comes Alive. "

For a few short years, late '60's/early to mid '70's
FM radio was very free; DJs would play whatever they pleased. You could call in with suggestions and if they liked it or had it they'd play it, regardless of length or obscurity.

No set playlists and no corporate control. And when "Frampton Cones Alive" came out and you couldn't select a station without it popping up every hour on the hour I knew those days were over. And then came The Bee Gees.

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Response to thucythucy (Reply #1)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 09:13 AM

9. My feeling was hooray because disco, as music, did suck

At least if you wanted more from your music than a beat. The early 70s may have been the height of popular music, all genres. Post-1975, the decline was precipitous and disco was at the forefront of suck, thatís the way I looked at it.

I wasnít thinking about big things like race and sexual orientation, I was pissed that Led Zeppelin and The Who were losing their way and airtime to mediocrities like Foreigner and Journey. The great R&B tunes that dominated AM radio in the early 70s disappeared as well. I used to wake up to Billy Paul, The Dramatics, Freda Payne, The Temptations...an endless list. And now I was supposed to be excited about the Andrea True Connection? Christ. If it werenít for Bob Marley and The Clash I would have lost my mind.

So when Chi-town blew up a bunch of disco records in between ends of a doubleheader I felt validated. It was stupid, but so was I at 20 years old. It was also part of what made that whole point in time great, and that includes disco. People were freer to explore, do crazy shit and things werenít fractionally as stage-managed as they are today. It was edgy, anarchic and fun. Like disco was for many people.

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Response to TheMightyFavog (Original post)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 01:07 AM

3. I was in Boot camp at Great Mistakes, the Navy locked down the base in case of riots.

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Response to TheMightyFavog (Original post)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 01:21 AM

5. Thank You Steve Dahl......nt

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Response to TheMightyFavog (Original post)

Fri Jul 13, 2018, 03:21 AM

7. OMG! Yes, Disco Demolition!!

I remember watching the local news. It was a riot. Jane Byrne was mayor. They were afraid the upper level grandstands would collapse because of the size of the crowd, they were stomping and jumping so much the stands were literally shaking.

I laughed when I saw it, but in retrospect, Steve Dahl and his crew were a bunch of bigots. Always going after one group or another in their on-the-air diatribes. I wonder if he ever changed his ways?

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