First Listen: Mike Dunn VS Jungle Wonz – Time Keeps Marching On (Mike Dunn MJ Trib MixX) (T’s Crate)
Time keeps marching on… With 30 years (would you believe this?) now gone since the first Chicago (Deep) House experimentations! Time keeps marching on. But how could we ever forget the legacy of pioneers such as Larry Heard or Lil’ Louis. Not to mention Marshall Jefferson?!?
Local vet producer Mike Dunn takes on where the latter along with Harry Dennis (Jungle Wonz) left back in 1987 with the classic ‘Time Marches On’. And it’s as if we, all of a sudden, got brought back in the day. Time keeps marching on, but quality music will always remain as, such as these blasts from the past by the likes of Kym Mazelle or Sterling Void among others…
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Mike Dunn, has been DJing and producing music for almost 30 years. Hailing from Englewood, Chicago, IL, he started out DJing at the local block parties that took place playing disco, funk, soul and prototype Chicago house tracks.
“I was one of the first cats bringing two reel-to-reels and spinning with them at the parties. I was bringing out two Pioneer 707s, doing the Hummingbird, Jacks, The Courtyard, etc. I’d bring a drum machine, too. I would make tracks right then as the party was going. Way before my guys Daft Punk and all of them were doing live gigs, I was doing that at the basement parties. Just bringing drum machines and doing everything live. A lot of my early tracks came from me doing them directly when the party was going on. I’d save it in memory and bring it home and polish it up. But I listen to it now and it’s like, damn… didn’t use enough cleaner!”
Word soon spread about his talents. Mike was booked for various clubs in and around Chicago. He’d be DJing with House Music innovators such as Ron Hardy, Larry Heard and good friend Armando Gallop. It wasn’t long before Mike got the production bug, resulting in his first release in 1987. A cut called ‘Dance You Mutha’ on Westbrook Records. He also started to produce and engineer for other Chicago cats such as the late Armando, Fast Eddie and K-Alexi Shelby.
More House and Techno productions followed in the late 80’s with Mike’s distinctive vocal delivery and trademark. Sometimes under his own name or aliases such as MD Connection, MDIII and QX-1.
He continued to produce and release throughout the 90’s, with releases on labels such as Nervous, Nite Stuff and Tribal America, whilst also working with other producers and vocalists such as Syleena Johnson, Byron Stingly, Kool Rock Steady and Kym English to name a few.
Among his definitive masterpieces, ‘God Made Me Phunky’ which he released back in 1994 as The MD X-Spress. And the lesser known flute driven ‘Return Of Tha Lost Soul (In Memory Of A Friend)’ 4 years later (under his own name)…
More recently tracks like ‘Phreaky MF’ on French label Robsoul and ‘God Made Me Phunky’, re-released on Defected records, have raised his profile and delivered his music to new audiences. Whilst new interest in Mike’s original old school jamz have taken him to work with the new generation of house and techno producers and labels.