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Review: Discotext Magazine: Vancouver Club Culture and the History of EDM 1988-1990

Friday 28th, November 2014 / 14:28
By Susanne Tabata

CoversVANCOUVER — Have you ever wanted to know what the first DJs played in their dance sets at the onset of house music in the late ’80s?

Early house DJ Robert Shea has just published “Discotext Magazine: Vancouver Club Culture & the History of EDM 1988-1990,” a limited collector’s edition tome of this time in our music history.

We give props to visionary Vince Alvaro, who in 1986 reimagined a dance club to rival anything in New York City and opened Graceland, alley entrance only at 1250 Richards Street. The club was the place to be if you stood anywhere close to the intersection where new music meets fashion and art. Even Prince partied there. At the time, Vancouver’s dance underground fit into one room and the DJs ran it. They received so many requests to publish their playlists that in 1988, they published their first issue of Discotext, for fans of Graceland and electronic dance music.

Mainly run by Debbie Jones and Robert Shea, the magazine now serves as a time capsule, and its reissue captures the zeitgeist of that era. Kudos to the early DJs Robert and Mick Shea, Debbie Jones, Bill Leeb, Phil Fontaine, Mario David, Carylann Loeppky, Robert Armstrong, and George Barrett. They made us dance and curated the entire experience in a thoughtful magazine, which is now being released as an entire 31-issue anthology.

Celebrate this book launch at a party on Thursday, December 18 @ 7 p.m. XiShi Lounge Shangri-la 1128 West Georgia Street. Featuring Tyler Stadius, Kevin Shiu, Vernon Douglas & more. Co-presented by LuvnGrace and XOXO.

Susanne Tabata is the creator of the punk film Bloodied But Unbowed, a college DJ alum, and writer of the forward to “Discotext Magazine: Vancouver Club Culture & the History of EDM 1988-1990.”

Back cover of a Graceland matchbook.

Back cover of a Graceland matchbook.

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