Here’s yet another treat for my fellow disco historians out there — it’s the holy grail of disco journalism!

In 1983, Steven Harvey, a British journalist (and today the proprietor of an NYC art gallery), wrote the first true “DJ profile” piece that ran in an obscure UK art magazine called Collusion. As far as the primary sources of disco are concerned, this might be the most important article ever written about dance music, period. The text of this piece has been floating around online for a while in plain text (copied and pasted into many a DJ forum in the late 90’s and 00’s) and as a reprint in DJ Magazine), but the actual pages with photos and layout have never seen the light of day for most of us regular folks.

Harvey was able to get introduced to almost all of the top DJs of the New York scene, and then whittled down his list to six DJs who he felt best represented the moment. Walter Gibbons, David Mancuso, Shep Pettibone, Larry Levan, Jellybean Benitez, and François Kevorkian are all interviewed and photographed in the piece.

It’s an incredible read, not just because of who Harvey was able to talk to and when, but also because of how forward-thinking the piece is. It reads like contemporary journalism and social commentary — Harvey seemed to grasp all of the social, economic, racial, and orientation issues inherent to disco at that time, and somehow he’s able to present its history without judgment while simultaneously nailing the future issues that will face the dance music community for decades to come. It’s almost telepathic.

In Tim Lawrence’s most recent book chronicling the history of dance music, “Life and Death on the New York Dance Floor, 1980-1983,” (buy it, seriously!!!!) he fittingly ends his book with a chapter dedicated to this very article (and to a classic Jools Holland clip from “The Tube” that mysteriously disappeared from YouTube recently). If you want to get a feel for the New York DJ scene in the early 80’s, this is the best way to do it.

Please click the images below to view Steven Harvey’s “Behind The Groove: NYC’s Disco Underground” article from Collusion Magazine in 1983.

And in case you missed it, we previously posted a rare article written by Arthur Baker in April, 1978 on “The Rise and Triumph of Euro-Disco.”

Right here we have quite a delightful tidbit of Boston disco history.

Back in the late 1970’s, John Luongo was the heart and soul of the Boston disco scene. Not only was he a top flight disco mixer, capable of blending tracks and making changes that would keep dancers on the floor for hours, but he was also the city’s biggest champion of dance music. When he wasn’t busy performing on the radio and at club gigs, or running the Boston Record Pool, Luongo was the founder and editor of the city’s monthly disco publication, called Nightfall Magazine. Dedicated to arts and entertainment, with a heavy dose of nightlife mixed in for good measure, the back issues of Nightfall are a disco historian’s dream. Luongo himself seems to have willed Boston into becoming one of the top disco capitals of the US, alongside New York, Chicago, and Philadelphia. Nightfall certainly played a part in that success, as it ended up launching its own disco awards show that would bring the industry’s top names into town each year.

In this issue of Nightfall from April of 1978, we have a guest article written by none other than Arthur Baker, one of the most prolific electronic musicians and producers of all time. Baker was a Luongo protegé who learned to DJ but ultimately found his niche on the production side of things. Arthur Baker’s resumé is unreal, and his discography is a veritable who’s who electronic music and record labels. And yes, I will also mention that Baker was the recording studio dude with long hair in New Order’s video for “Confusion” where you see him cut the song on reel-to-reel and bring it over to the Funhouse for the Italian pizza girls and b-boys to dance to.

Baker would have only been 23 when he wrote this piece, but actually would have worked with Luongo and another local legend, Joey Carvello, on a record called “Losing You” that had been released several months earlier. In this article you not only get Baker’s thoughts, you also get some great insight into the history of Eurodisco, a genre dominated by another Boston legend, Donna Summer.

I’ll have some more interesting tidbits on Donna Summer in the next few weeks, but in the meantime please enjoy this article from Arthur Baker on “The Rise and Triumph of Euro-disco.”