Mark Farina Recalls the Golden Age of Crate Digging

The Chicago DJ legend talks to HI-FIVES about cratedigging and the records that make him dance.

“Vinyl Me, Please” (that’s the name, not a request) is one of the monthly record clubs that sprung up in the wake of the oft-reported vinyl renaissance of the last 10 years.

They also produce a quasi-docu-podcast called “HI-FIVES” (we like the name) in which people – mostly artists it seems – discuss matters of vinyl and vinyl culture. Their latest episode (embedded above) features Chicago House hero Mark Farina at Twist & Shout Records in Denver, Colorado talking about crate digging, secret weapons and the like. We covered some of the same ground in our last (to date) Mark Farina cover story.

It’s a bit odd to ask Mark Farina his “favorite record to dance to” but he takes it in stride and comes out the other side with a highly educational answer. (Transcription by 5 Mag):

“I decided to go back to a period in Chicago in the ’80s when House Music was going on. There was a label in Chicago called Wax Trax which had groups like Ministry, Front 242… We used to go to this record store every week. There was a big mixed dance music scene in Chicago in the early- to mid-’80s when, similar to House Music, the DJs would blend all the ’80s industrial music. You couldn’t just play ‘songs.’ It all had to be beat-matched. From, you know, Severed Heads, Yello, New Order – everything was all beat-matched.

“There was a song that bridged from the ’80s into what dance music turned into in that late ’80s into ’90s period. This is kind of a hidden Chicago classic, by Liaisons Dangereuses. A lot of house and techno stem from this particular song, ‘Peut Être… Pas.’ And there’s another song on here that was really popular in the club called ‘Los Niños Del Parque.’ To this day if someone plays any of those two songs in a club, I’m gonna dance no matter what.

“There’s a group of us old Chicago and Detroit people who know this particular song that’s been sampled a bunch. You can even search on YouTube and find a video of them doing it live in the ’80s. They’re Eastern European, it came out on a French label but they’re Chicago classics, along with some other cities in the Midwest.”


Vinyl Me, Please is also offering a contest to win six records from a “Mark Farina Record Pack” of selections mentioned in HI-FIVES, which includes an autographed copy of Mushroom Jazz Vol 4.