30 years of DJ Culture from East Los Angeles

I have written a couple of pieces on my blog about my involvement and history with DJ culture in Southern California. My academic focus has been on Chicano DJ culture focused on the Eastside of Los Angeles. Chicano scholars have not included DJ culture as part of our experience and DJ Culture/Rave Culture scholars have not included Chicano DJs in their investigations. This makes Chicano DJ culture a truly Chicano experience: ignored by both (our own scholars and outsider scholars), stuck in the middle between two worlds, not factored in.
This project I am working on with G727 is taking form everyday. We have been holding meetings and gathering friends and participants to make this happen. In researching our experience I have learned that we need to include as many voices as possible. We are not Chicago who has Frankie Knuckles, nor are we New York with a Larry Levan. Detroit’s history looks at the Bellevue Three. Here in L.A. we need to look at the hundreds of thousands. There are many factors that lead to the LA experience being different to the East coast.

We have better weather so we have outdoor parties 10 out of 12 months, in East Los a lot of us had large backyards to host massive parties, we are a car culture so we all could have mobile systems that we could easily transport and we could get to more parties in one night. The list goes on.
Anyhow, please support our first fundraiser at Eastside Luv next Thurs.

This is what I’ve been sending out to all my ‘social networks’:

Based on my Master’s thesis “An Oral History of DJ Culture from East Los Angeles,” I am working with G727 on building a living collaborative archive. All DJs, promoters and dancers who were a part of or were inspired by Chicano DJ culture based on the Eastside are welcome to bring their flyers, memories and music to this project. We are having a few fundraisers for out supplies, please come out and support or send us a check.

“Featuring the Lightz and Soundz of…”

A 30-Year Survey of DJ Culture from East L.A.

June 7­ – August 9, 2008

Opening Reception: Saturday, June 14, 7- 11pm
Gallery Hours: Thursday through Saturday 12-6pm

G727 is pleased to present “Featuring the Lightz and Soundz of…” an interactive participatory exhibition celebrating the first 30 years of DJ culture rooted in East Los Angeles.

This exhibition will develop over the course of nine weeks and invites the public to contribute their party flyers, images, anecdotes, and spinning skills to an ongoing series of events and remembrances, while developing a living archive that can serve as the basis for historical research of the genre’s contribution to the Southern California cultural landscape.

Working in collaboration with Power Tools (a weekly DJ mixshow program on Los Angeles’ Power 106 FM), which have chronicled the nuances of the DJ scene and continue to keep it alive in underground settings, “Featuring the Lightz and Soundz of…” will function as a staging ground for the search of the intimate and personal experiences that have contributed to the formation of distinct alternative dance movements, honoring the complexities of its chronology, geography, and surrounding social context.

G727 welcomes testimonies, photos, flyers and mixes (cassette, CD or MP3) to help build the narrative about the variety of spaces and happenings that make up the first 30 years of East L.A. DJ culture.
This exhibition provides a collaborative contextual framework for participants, past and present, to become active producers in the documentary process of their own cultural histories.


Adrian Rivas
213 627 9563

About G727:

G727 seeks to generate dialogues on artistic representations and
interpretations of the urban landscape. The building blocks of a city
comprise more than simply buildings, streets, and sidewalks. They equally encompass personal experience, collective memory and narratives. These are the less tangible, but no less integral elements that transform mere infrastructure into place. Through photography, painting, writing and video installations, artists open our eyes to these elements and heighten our awareness of what makes a place a place. G727 welcomes these artists to its space to help us all better understand the complex nature of cities and
the urban condition.

58 thoughts on “30 years of DJ Culture from East Los Angeles

  1. Aztek Nation Change the partycene in an infamous way when they started adding crew guests and envites and promoters on flyers. Atek Nation had a later start than Kaos-madness-rebels-Network 23-saints and needed crowds to compete in the east l.a. party scene so they started adding crews. If you were in the scene and knew someone from the crew most likely your crew was on the next flyer and were given several flyers for them to promote. If you ever went to one of the jam packed parties half of the people got in for free that was the cost of fame for the East L.A. Aztek Nation Crews like— Above All B%!!-Outrage-insatiables-latin pride-Naughty Boys-ho patrol-suspects-madd circle-were sure party shows

  2. Thanks for adding your voice to this, much appreciated.
    Just wanted to clarify for you that party fliers, since the earliest ones we collected to 1979, have always had invites for other crews in the area and to high schools, car and truck clubs.
    Only crews on the inside of the flier, we use to fold them, were expected to promote by handing out fliers. We wouldn’t let half of any promoting crew come in for free. Just the main heads one-four at most everyone else claiming to be in the crew had to pay half or some other negotiated price.
    Female promoters who would promote and get there early would often be let in free entirely. We wanted the place with more women than men early, so that any men coming by would see there were women there already in large numbers and would then pay to get in.
    Crews listed in special invites, that were on the back of the flier near the map and info lines, were not expected to promote and they had to pay at the door.

  3. Adrian, there is a BACKTODISCO.COM , i think they also collaborated to your project from what I was told and that they have revived all that scene. Just about every DJ from then has paid a visit there including the Marco Time guy that i think was part of them too at one time. They have the largest database of information and pictures from those times. Check them out, maybe they can help you if they havent yet.


  4. Fun days in Boyle heights the putasos at Tommy’s on Esperanza and Whittier bl or 24hrs on soto and Whittier bl cruising around garfield HS and whittier Bl (the bully)looking for trouble & hynas wish we can do it all over again Roosevelt H.S was the business all you fools we got into it with know whats up I know you agree it was fun ! We were the REAL BAD BOYZ THE MUTHA FUCKEN ENGLAND BOYZ from the ESTARADA COURTS PROJECTS ! it was all fun and games that was our shit blasting putasos busting all nighters smashing on the hynas from the irresistibles. I see some dudes we tripped on back in the days with their families and they show respect fuck it that was the name and the game back then. Now it’s all about showing love we made it through all that crazy life wouldn’t trade it for nothing Project kid from the start project kid to the heart!

  5. Waz up everybody just thought I check in ELA wild ones chunky wish shit didn’t get bad like it did shootings stabbings etc 90 91 92 93 best years of the ELA party scene

  6. Aye, we were the baddest mo fos out there back v in tha days, Puro pinchi og ELA UNDERTAKERS! Lol naw but it was a blast in the past, DJ Toro, Karloz V. Dj. Mr Jdee, Dr.Destruction , Dj Julio.n more. . Good times throwing Ditch parties n Fox 11 news doin their documentary on us party crews.. good times..

  7. Frankie Casanova here…Bring you the High Energy show live every Saturday night from DQ’s Downtown…Where the boys meet and the girls go wild !!!

    Many great memories from the past. Lots of fliers, little digital documentation exists of DQ’s.

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