Tony Moran is bringing his national resume and sound back to Chicago for the monthly Octane Party from SKIN Productions on Saturday night, Sept. 9, at Fantasy Nightclub in Boystown.
Moran is a two-time Grammy-nominated remixer/producer/singer-songwriter and DJ known for remixing popular songs, dating back to the 1980s.
Some of his biggest notoriety came in 2007, when he hit No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart twice with "Walk Away," featuring Kristine W, and "Keep Your Body Working," featuring Martha Wash. Moran also has seven No. 1 hits on the Billboard Dance Club Songs music charts and he has had four No. 1 Billboard chart hits in the years 2016 and 2017.
Moran has remixed work for a who's who of top artists, including Madonna, George Michael, Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna, Cher, Donna Summer, Janet Jackson, Celine Dion, Neyo, Gloria Estefan, Ricky Martin, Selena Gomez and others.
Last December, Billboard Magazine ranked Moran as the 92nd most-successful dance artist of all-time.
"It has been a very cool journey for me; life has moved so fast that I rarely notice how much I've (accomplished)," Moran said. "I feel blessed and humbled to have the opportunities still out there to express myself.
"Mostly, I am a songwriter and a music producer. I am totally hands-on. My greatest passion is to record the artists, male or female, and discover a way to bring out the most in a song. It can be a lot of pressure when some of these artists are Celine Dion, Cher, Luther Vandross and Deborah Cox. You (have) to step it up every time, and I think that is why I've produced so many people."
Moran has a career filled with singles, remixes, albums and more.
His all-time favorite musical act is, Hall & Oates, adding that it was "such a pleasure" to work for them on The Big Bang Boom album.
Moran's musical memory dates back decades to Def Leopard – the first concert he went to alone, and he was the only Latino in the stadium, he joked. "I went dressed up like I was going to church as everyone around me had ripped jeans and tattoos. I felt extremely awkward until the band went on and I was happy in my zone of content."
In recent weeks, Moran has seen Chic, Britney Spears, Hall & Oates, Tears For Fears and the musical Dear Evan Hansen.
Moran was 15 years-old in his first gig as a DJ, which was at a roller-skating rink.
"I remember people losing their minds when I played, 'Billie Jean' by Michael Jackson," he said. "After a while I was playing imports and mixing everything from rap to dance."
Since that first night, Moran has "become ever more focused in regards to my relationship with the audience. The crowd keeps me fresh and on top of being aware of different styles emerging."
Admittedly, Moran was shy growing up. In fact, he was short and insecure. But as a DJ, Moran was able to find out who he really was, "and it just kept growing from there."
And if he wasn't a DJ, Moran said he'd be an electric engineer, which is what he went to college for.
But in the DJ booth, Moran is "unique and energetic," he said.
"Traveling around the world, I am constantly exposed to new sounds. I often incorporate what is my sound into others in an interesting way," he said. "Watching people relaxing and jumping to the music at the same time (is an) honor."
Moran has DJ'd multiple times in the past in Chicago – at Crobar, during IML, at Hydrate, and more.
"I love the city," he said of Chicago.
Moran said the Octane Party on Sept. 9, "will be a blast."
Moran added, "I am as devoted as a friend as I am to the music. Friends mean more to me than ever."