Jesse De La Pena Talks About First DJ Gigs, Acid Jazz, and Bringing Hip Hop to Chicago Clubs

March 18, 2011

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Jesse De La Pena has been spinning records since 1985 and has helped lay foundation for today's Chicago Hip Hop scene, getting some of those early records into clubs when Hip Hop was yet unrecognized outside the underground / street movements. Beyond Hip Hop, Jesse is known to spin some of the most eclectic sets in Chicago mixing genres like soul, blues, reggae, new wave, funk, rock, DnB, etc.

He was one of the original DJs behind Grammy nominated Liquid Soul ensemble which pioneered Acid Jazz genre, and was a key player in Chicago's House scene in the 90's.

Jesse has recently joined WBEZ's sister station Vocalo 89.5 FM as Music Curator and was interviewed by MusicVox host Jesse Menedez.

De La Pena begins by telling how he got into music and DJing and shares a story about his first DJ gig at Smart Bar in Chicago when he was 19 years old and how the club owner snuck him in on the popular Wednesday nights.

Check out his entire DJ set on MusicVox