Groove Line

Sat. November 19, 2005 12:00 AM
by DJ Plez

No Future? Plenty of History!

My personal reaction to the recently announced cancellation of Fireball has mostly been a mixed bag: from sadness to anger; from frustration to resignation. I could write A LOT about Fireball and the Hearts Foundation (as well as their predecessors The Hearts Party and Hearts Committee), but instead I’ll just present my personal Top 10 memories from the annual February gathering of the dancing shirtless bodies:

10. The fantastic production number in 2002 featuring little Debra Minghi and flagger Rob Welch performing to the remix of John Lennon’s "Imagine" with Victor Calderone in the DJ booth.

9. After years of always wearing red to the Party, the official color one year (1999?) was blue. Huh!?!

8. DJ Neil Lewis ending the 2000 after-hours party at Metro by playing Lighthouse Family’s “High” and then a bunch of us sketchily eating breakfast at the Wrigleyville McDonald’s.

7. As the party with DJ Manny Lehman was hitting its peak in 2001, the music stopped for 10 minutes as the power went out in the Aragon. Oops!

6. Figuring out over the years how to maneuver around the maze that is Excalibur Nightclub and leading my lost friends from the bathroom to the dance floor.

5. I DJed the 2005 Oasis Lounge after-hours party and set that party off when I went old school on them and played “Can You Party” by Royal House.

4. The Confusing Hearts Party (in 1995 I think?) when Part 1 was downtown at some restaurant in the Fulton Street warehouse district until 3 am and Part 2 was at Circuit Nightclub until 5 am.

3. In my opinion, the best music ever in the history of Fireball/Hearts Party: DJ Mark Picchiotti at the Uptown in 1998.

2. The amazing video screen used in 2004 at Finkl Steel Mill to accompany the en fuego set by Rosabel.

1. All aspects of the 2000 party just seemed to click: the Uptown as the venue; DJ Abel on music; production numbers featuring Jeannie Tracy, Circuit MOM and flagger extraordinaire Greg Thome; and my friend Adam as an angel welcoming all to the party.

Music Reviews
This reference might be lost on many of you, but here goes a “2-Minute Drill” of music reviews for Autumn.

Alegria Musica – mixed by DJ Abel (Tommy Boy Silver). This continuously mixed compilation 2-cd set is another top-notch representation of the infamous NYC party. It’s also a great demonstration of how circuit music is becoming broader in style with the infusion of funky and groovy house beats.

Ultimate Collection – Eurythmics (Arista). The pioneering and influential synth pop stars Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart celebrate 25 years of success with this greatest hits collection and two new singles, including the current hit “I’ve Got A Life.” This is a must have for your collection.

The Body Acoustic – Cyndi Lauper (Daylight/Epic). This CD is a mix of Lauper classics and the new - all performed unplugged. And the list of guest voices is impressive, including Vivian Green, Ani DiFranco, Shaggy, Sarah McLachlan, and Jeff Beck.

Can’t Get Enough – Master C&J featuring Liz Torres (Casablanca). In the mid and late 1980s when house music was bursting forth, Torres became an underground vocal legend. This new CD features the classics “Can’t Get Enough” – in English and Spanish – and “Fantasize Me” and will put broad smiles on all house-heads.

Cherry – Lisa Shaw (Naked Music). With releases over the years of tracks such as “Always” and “Let It Ride,” this native of Toronto has become a star vocalist in the deep house scene. She now showcases her talent on this eagerly awaited 13-track debut long-player. Just delicious!

Flo’Ology – Floetry (Geffen). This is the third CD for the duo that makes up Floetry: Marsha Ambrosius and Natalie Stewart. Deep, souful, and full of groove, Flo’Ology’s rhythms and rhymes span the spectrum of romantic relationships and is evident of artistic growth that should mean continued success for this pair.

“Hung Up” – Madonna (Maverick). The lead remix of this catchy track from Ma’s next album was done by none other than Tracy Young, her favorite DJ. Remixes from the likes of Chus & Ceballos and Jacques Lu Cont will be delighting dance floors as well.

“Precious”– Depeche Mode (Sire). The lead mix is twelve minutes of proggy goodness resulting from Victor Calderone and Mac Quayle. Other big gun remixers on this project include Sasha, DJ Dan, and Dave Aude.

“Twisted Transistor” - Korn (Virgin). Surprisingly crossing over to dance floors, mixes by Eric Kupper and Josh Harris will find plenty of beat-oriented fans.