Nestled away in the colorful Lakeview neighborhood of the birthplace of house music, Chicago's Gramaphone Records has not only been incredibly influential to the scene-at-large; many would even say that it shaped the culture of house and the genres it would spawn. Still considered an epicenter of rare vinyl by selectors and listeners near and far, the shop became a haven to DJs who would land resident slots in Metro and smartbar just up the block. During Gramaphone's early days, jazz, blues, and folk were the heavily-stocked genres, however along with the 80's came the invasion of house, and the store followed suit. As musical trends changed, staffing adapted, ushering in local heavy-hitters-to-be, such as Derrick Carter, DJ Sneak, Mark Farina, and eventually current owner, Michael Serafini, among many others. Now-legendary labels such as Trax and Dancemania have the support of Gramaphone to thank, in part, for their rapid eruptions. In addition to its people and labels, Gramaphone served as an avid supporter for the succession of genre movements in techno, hip hop, and drum 'n' bass, allowing for promotion and sale of the innovative sounds within its walls. To label the brand as iconic would be an understatement, as the shop and its contributors have had an indelible impact on their surroundings within the Chicago house music community, both past and present day alike.
GRAMAPHONE 50 will commence on Sunday, November 17th and will feature the music of artists from within the shop's orbit, including STEVE "SILK" HURLEY, DERRICK CARTER, RON TRENT, DJ HEATHER, COLETTE, JR OF THE MOLEMEN, G MOST, JESSE DE LA PENA, JUSTIN AULIS LONG, PSYCHO-BITCH, HECTOR LOPEZ, MICHAEL SERAFINI, GARRETT DAVID, KARL MEIER, and more TBA. It will be an all-building event in both Metro and smartbar, open to patrons 21 and over.