Morrison & Sidoli; Our Salsoul Nugget.

rickyfran

Over 15 years ago, after a stint producing successful pop hits, childhood friends Ricky Morrison and Fran Sidoli, colloquially know as legendary UK team M&S productions decided it was time take Odyssey’s advice and go right ‘back to their roots’. They wanted to produce a record that showcased some of the classic grooves that they and so many of their peers loved – they were looking for that elusive golden sample, a nugget you might say.

The initial spark of inspiration came from NYC stalwart Victor Simonelli’s 1993 production  ‘The Sound of One’. Featuring a loop from the instrumental part of Double Exposure’s ‘Everyman’. After a four hour session in the studio listening to the loop over and over again on their Akai MPC3000 the pair decided to leave the project to rest while they both took their respective vacations.   Too late though, the bug had bitten and over the next two weeks the duo spoke four or five times daily on the phone, planning where they could take the track to get the finished sound they wanted.

Once back in Blighty and the studio they hit upon and decided to use the late Jimmy Williams’ vocal hook, also from ‘Everyman’. The sample that has rocked a thousand dance floors had been born; ‘if u wanna that the road would be paved all smooth and nice’.   The creative floodgates were now open. Loleatta Holloway’s eight octave voice was added with a sample from another Salsoul Philly classic ‘Hit and Run’ and the finished track was ready in just one day.

Much to their surprise and disappointment the first record company who listened to the record had very little interest. Undeterred and with such strong belief in the track, it was decided that they themselves would take the risk and press an initial batch of white label copies that would be sent to 50 of their DJ friends. Not a bad idea when your friends include artists such as  Frankie Knuckles, David Morales and Little Louis Vega, but to mention a few.

This proved to be exactly the springboard needed to launch the track, Salsoul Nugget got an incredible reception from some of the most influential names in dance music. Ricky recalls that the late great Knuckles played the track three times during his set at Mass in Brixton, the last time being the final record of the night.

And the rest? Well that as they say is history, the track was signed to FFRR in the               UK, Atlantic Records in the US and Sony across the channel in France and sold over 90,000 copies in the first day alone, proving that sometimes, just sometimes all that glistens is indeed gold.

You can Catch a Salsoul groove with Ricky Morrison of M&S productions at A Night in Paradise on Sunday 27th of November 2016 at Ministry of Sound. A non-profit event celebrating all things Paradise Garage and the clubs, DJs and sounds it and it’s helmsman Larry Levan have since, and continue to inspire.

More tickets and info on this here: http://bit.ly/2e3LAv8

eflyer2-wtimes

Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC); ‘Keep on Dancing’

gmhc-new

On Thursday 8th of April 1982, what we think may have been the worlds first major HIV fundraiser was held at The Paradise Garage. The $50,000 that was raised went towards founding what is now we now call GMHC (Gay Men’s Health Crisis). Upon his death in 2007 Mel Cheren, The Godfather of Disco and founder of West End Records left the Paradise Garage name and trademark to GMHC so it could continue its work in New York and across the globe.

Coinciding with World AIDS Day 2016 on Sunday the 27th of November,  from 2pm – midnight we’re coming together again at Ministry of Sound for our second Night in Paradise. Celebrating the music and legacy that Larry Levan and The Paradise Garage left behind. Fitting then that the club playing host to this non-profit event was inspired, in large part by co-creator Justin Berkmann’s two year pilgrimage to No84 King Street.

Below, Krishna Stone, GMHC’s Assistant Director of Community relations, and avid Paradise Garage dancer tells us why these donations are so important and how they assist the worlds oldest HIV and AIDS service and organisation support people who are vulnerable to and living with HIV and AIDS.
1showers

‘We at Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC) are immensely grateful for the generous donation from the 2014 dance party/fundraiser, A Night in Paradise, and are thrilled the party is happening again in November 2016.  GMHC is the nation’s leading provider of HIV and AIDS care, prevention services and advocacy,serving nearly 10,000 people living with and affected by HIV and AIDS in New York City, the epicenter of the epidemic in the U.S. As the world’s first HIV and AIDS service organization, GMHC is an expert in providing services that every person affected by the epidemic deserves.

Proceeds from both parties help to benefit our services for both HIV positive and negative people including: HIV testing and prevention education services, meals and nutrition programs, workforce development programs, as well as legal, mental health and substance use services. GMHC also advocates for stronger public policies at the local, state and federal level with the goal of ending AIDS as an epidemic in New York State by 2020.

We are so appreciative of these parties because they bring people together for incredibly joyful, musical experiences while raising much-needed funds for our life-sustaining services. Our thanks to the organizers and DJs for their wonderful work.  End AIDS. Live Life. Dance.’ – Krishna Stone for GMHC.

eflyer2-wtimesMore info/tickets for A Night in Paradise here: http://bit.ly/2e3LAv8

David DePino ‘I was Double Crossed’

mp228-0913‘I love all of First Choice’s records, but different songs were my favourite at different times.  If I had to pick one it would be ‘Double Cross’.  When Larry needed me and I was not in the booth he would play the very beginning over another record or play the record itself and I’d know immediately and run to the booth. That was our little signal to each other…’

You can hear David, Rochelle Fleming ‘The Voice of First Choice’ and undoubtedly ‘Double Cross’ at A Night in Paradise from 2pm – 12am on Sunday 27th November 2016 at Ministry of Sound.

More Info/Tickets: http://bit.ly/2e3LAv8

pg_eflyer2

First Choice ‘Double Cross’ Larry Levan Mix.

 

Joey Llanos; My Paradise Garage

mp228-0867I was introduced to Larry Levan by a mutual friend in 1979. My background was in marching percussion, electrical technology, and martial arts. Which is how I secured a job on the security staff at the Garage. My relationship with Larry Levan evolved into him inspiring me to becoming a dj, which was not my intention. But his magical mastery in manipulating sound, lights and peoples moods with his music amazed to such a degree that I went out and purchased a mixer and a second turntable. Larry Levan was a super star dj at the top of his game in NYC’s underground and private dance music scene. While Studio 54 was famous for its glam clientele, its lights and half moon props and coke spoon. The Paradise Garage was famous for it state of the art sound system and of course, the man at the helm, Larry Levan himself. I was fortunate to be one of two people to apprentice under him. The other, my partner David DePino are now responsible for keeping the gate if you will. With our annual Paradise Garage Reunion parties in New York City. Still Playing for record breaking crowds, 2017 will make the 40th year anniversary of the party. I would have never thought 40 yrs later after the closing of the club in 1987, that I would be the one keeping the history and legacy alive. There is my 15 min of fame, and I love it. I am blessed! Joey Llanos.

First blog post

Welcome to our ‘A Night in Paradise’ blog. We’ll be posting stories, pictures and features here about all things Paradise Garage.  Check out our Facebook Fan Page https://www.facebook.com/anightinparadiseparty/ for more info on the elemental NYC club that changed the music we listen to and the the clubs that we listen to it in.

Love is the Message.