Archive for October 18, 2009
The countdown to the main event began as the minutes slowly disappeared. Soon patience gave way to anxiousness that gave way to the jitters. Within ten or so minutes a small crowd assembled at the sliding door in front of the four steps that led to the basement. People wondered what the hell was going on. What was the reason for the hold-up? Hopefully, no mad rush would ensue trying to make it down the stairs because yours truly was pinned up against a brick wall by several attendees trying to slide their way ever so closer to the door.
Then it happened, the magical door slid open and revealed the magical world of Tony Humphries; the kingdom of all things house music. A group of individuals ran down the five stairs to secure prime real estate on the empty dance floor while others rushed into the basement to partake of the half-bar situated between the dance space and the VIP room. The VIP area drenched with bloody red walls resembled redrum from a classic 1980’s horror film. But this room was lavishly set up for an exclusive birthday celebration equipped with silver streamers and white party balloons. A small group of trendy dressed individuals with glowing veneers were already parked with cocktails in hand toasting the night away. They were all about golden smiles and gregarious laughs. For the doors to only open several seconds earlier there was already a mass of activity starting to take place.
The night would see no opening DJ as Tony was in mid-mix playing some funk’em house dubs. That chunky thick Chicago beat layered with driving snares, slashing high hats, clashing cymbals and a swimming baseline was abuzz in the room full of disco balls and strobe lights. No vocals were needed on the stellar dance track that readied the dancers for an explosive night.
Certainly, people predicted this party would be packed. But just how packed was up to anyone’s guess. Tambor had never seen the likes of a mass swelling present at any of its previous two parties separately or combined. Before one’s eyes was a scene reminiscent Ibiza, Winter Music Conference or Southport Weekender. Tambor could not have ever expected, foreseen or predicted this capacity turnout. You would have sworn Jesus was in the building feeding the multitudes FREE loaves of bread and fish. There were people everywhere. The VIP was packed with birthday revelers and the dance floor so densely populated there was no way to cut through it not even with a machete.
By 2 am the room was still packed at capacity with people of all ages, ethnicity, creed, sex and sexual orientation unafraid to represent for their beloved house music. Over in one corner danced a band of blond hair blue eyed soldiers. Over in another corner danced the afro- gay male population. Towards the back of the room fancy footers footed in and around a spiritual circle while in the front of the room adoring female fans screamed to the tune of every song played. Yes, the old house heads intermingled with new house heads. Jackin’ house heads intertwined with deep heads. Tambor represented all peoples leaving no one alone in musical solidarity.
Tony played for everyone present rather it be hipsters or old-skoolers. For the forty and up crew, classic disco was played and for the 30 and under hardcore techy beats. Later in the night, Roy Davis Jr. with Terry Dexter’s, “Paradise (In Your Mind)” that soft R&B fit for radio, whispered throughout the room only to be met by smashing B-52’s glam funk/rock. The favorite jackin’ house floor thumper of the year Gramaphonzie’s, “Why Don’t You” sent the crowd into fury before tribal beats hushed its fall. At best this was a true house party where every style, category, and genre was played, something reminiscent from past loft parties in Chicago, Detroit, New Jersey and New York.
Wheewww, after an exhaustive but epic night, the house community received what was finally due. A night filled with unashamed music. Tony performed the work of several DJs with his mixed pooh-pooh platter of beats and mind blending genres. Thus, making the night a momentous journey for the universal music lover.
Photography courtesy of Luis V for Dynamite Entertainment Group (DEG)