As 5 Mag reported in April, the Chicago Transit Authority has installed a DJ booth among other amenities at the CTA Red Line Station on 95th Street.

The Chicago Tribune’s Natalie Wade has written a fly-on-the-wall account of an afternoon at the booth when Chicago DJ Duane Powell was at the decks:

Street level on the north end of this CTA commuter hub, two glass doors are swung wide open to reveal a wall lined with records, a flashing red neon sign resembling a person growing out their ‘fro — the neon sign a staple of Theaster Gates’ aesthetic — and in the center, DJ Duane Powell mixing beats behind a high-tech DJ set-up. With Powell at the helm of the soundboard, shiny new turntables, mics and speakers, the sound of the platform below — beeping, clanging and automated voice chanting “doors closing” — fade away. …

“House music allows me to get out of the mentality of Chicago segregation,” said Powell who grew up on Chicago’s South Side. He explains that anyone who lives south of 95th Street has to travel through this station to get home, and he hopes that his music can help the commuter’s day become a little brighter.


Read the full story here.

The booth, called AESOP (An Extended Song of Our People) was installed as part of the 95th Street Station’s $280 million overall. “As a finishing touch on the new bus and train station,” 5 Mag reported in April, “acclaimed artist Theaster Gates has unveiled multiple public art pieces, including tapestries made out of decommissioned fire hoses and a ‘first of its kind’ performance space and radio station inside the terminal itself.”

Now through Labor Day, Powell can be heard mixing at AESOP every Friday from 4pm to 7pm. Ayana Contreras mixes on Mondays from 7am to 10am.

We don’t know if they take requests, but we’d like to make one: