Black Jukebox

Next Friday Dalston Superstore is teaming up with Berlin based record label Exploited to bring you the very first party from Exploited’s disco-offshoot Black Jukebox! Compromised mostly of re-edits of classic disco tracks from artists on the Exploited label and beyond, inspiration for tracks has come from artists such as Midnight Star or even Tina Turner. Ahead of the party with latest Black Jukebox contributors Behling & Simpson, we caught up with Exploited boss Shir Khan to ask him about how it all came about and his disco influences…

How did Black Jukebox spring off from Exploited Records?

I have always been a fan of the disco edit culture on limited vinyl. From loopy Soundstream stuff, to Greg Wilson edits, Todd Terje Remakes and early Soulwax mash-ups. I have a huge collection at home with all sorts of edits/blends, unofficial remixes, bootlegs, plunderphonics and mash-ups. The label started as a ‘vinyl-only’ label in order to offer real vinyl fans something exclusive. On the other hand I wanted to separate the edit stuff from the real label Exploited. Black Jukebox means fun in the discotheque. Its not strictly disco – but disco is the main ingredient. Something you want to play out immediately once you hear it, ’cause you think, “Do I know this from somewhere…isnt that? Hmmm….Well – whatever – shut up and dance.”

What are some of your favourite tracks from the series?

It’s definitely Doctor Dru’s rework of the Italo-disco classic Voice Of Q which we renamed ‘The Voice Of Dru. It was the breakthrough edit for the Hamburg producer. Somehow it’s funny that you can build a career on just one edit. Since then Dru has been touring all over the world. He has been also involved in former Adana Twins’ productions who blew up last year and who made – together with Dru – the first appearance on Black Jukebox (Juicy Fruit and Supreme). So you can say that the success with Exploited Records actually started with the Black Jukebox series forming two of their most important acts on the label now: Adana Twins & Doctor Dru. 

Are there any disco sacred cows that contributors aren’t allowed or just really shouldn’t touch?

I don’t think there are any rules. 

And who are your disco heroes? Who changed disco for you the first time you heard it their music?

I must confess that I haven’t always been a disco fan. Everything started with rap music for me. From there I took my research onto soul & funk, rare grooves, acid jazz, disco and then later house and techno. DJ-wise it was probably more the neo-disco wave that got me into disco in general. I wasn’t the biggest Prins Thomas, Lindstrom-Fan either… but I was deeply addicted to early Todd Terje Stuff and of course Prins Thomas’ label Full Pup. I also love Greg Wilson and his edits. In Berlin DJ Kaos from Terranova was an important DJ to me. He was also one of the few DJs together with Daniel Wang who have been playing out all the real good and rare disco gems. My dream would have been to see Larry Levan playing back in the day. Funnily enough I did see Frankie Knuckles though last December DJing in a wheelchair in Bangkok. To be honest – his music sounded quite commercial but what really excited me was that he played a record from my label. So in modern times it all comes together!

Who might we expect to see contributing to Black Jukebox in the future?

Probably Claptone. But it’s kind of a secret at the moment.

How did Behling & Simpson come to be on the latest release?

I’ve always liked their stuff… especially on Futureboogie and 20/20 Vision. They actually sent me a folder with demos and I decided to release them on Black Jukebox. I liked the idea ’cause they took the series to the next level, adding some kind of UK slow-mo garage filth. There is actually only one edit out of the four tracks on the release. All the other tracks are originals but they sound like they could be edits. 

Why does disco transcend the inevitable every few years “disco revival” touted in the music press?

Good question. Disco will never die. It’s everywhere. It’s the backbone of house and Feel Good Music. The new Daft Punk album is all seventies disco. 

Why is Dalston Superstore a good place for the first Black Jukebox party as opposed to say somewhere in Berlin where Exploited is based?

I’ve always liked the place… it’s intimate – musically opened minded – mixed gender – the perfect crowd for this kind of party.

And finally what’s one disco gem you’ll be treating the laser basement to?

I always play this and I still love it: Quando Quango – Love Tempo.

Join Shir Khan for the first ever Black Jukebox party at Dalston Superstore on Friday 4th October from 9pm – 4am.

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