House Music Legend Frankie Knuckles Dead At 59
Fans of House music legend Frankie Knuckles are in mourning after news that the celebrated DJ and producer has died. Knuckles’ passing was confirmed by two close colleagues via Twitter and numerous sources around the Web as well.
Born Frankie Warren Knuckles Jr. on January 18, 1955, the Bronx native relocated to Chicago and was immersed in the DJ scene early on and played at the famed Warehouse for a handful of years before opening his own Power Planet establishment. Working with Chicago producer and DJ Chip E, Knuckles released his first recording “You Can’t Hide” which kicked off his career.
Earning the nickname “The Godfather Of House Music,” Knuckles’ contributions to the genre grew from that point on and he found success as a sought after DJ who secured residency stints at some of the world’s most prestigious dance clubs.
In the late 1980s, Knuckles partnered with Judy Weinstein’s Def Mix Productions and worked alongside David Morales, Satoshi Tomiie and Hector Romero. In 1991, Knuckles’ major label debut Beyond The Mix featured his most popular single “The Whistle Song” and sparked a spate of remix and production work for the producer.
Although his solo catalog was not necessarily high in volume, Knuckles worked House and club remixes for many popular artists including Michael Jackson, Chaka Khan, Janet Jackson, Toni Braxton among many other acts. In 1997, Knuckles would win a Grammy Award for Remixer of the Year, Non-Classical.
Morales tweeted the news shortly after 11 PM ET Monday (March 31) night. House fixtures DJ Deeon and Paul Johnson both posted their condolences shortly after on their respective social media channels. According to Wikipedia, Knuckles reportedly succumbed to complications from diabetes.
Knuckles was 59.
Rest In Powerful Peace, Frankie Knuckles. Our condolences go out to the Knuckles family and the entire House music community.
Listen to “The Whistle Song” below.