It’s a bustling sunny Saturday in The Big Apple. The city’s culture tastemakers are buzzing about the multi-talented comedian Deon Cole’s Netflix Special taping at the Historical Kings Theater (formerly Lowe’s King Theatre) in Flatbush, Brooklyn.
A beautiful moment, because the 1929 establishment had its fair share of legendary moments before closing in 1977 and falling to dilapidation. After a $95 million renovation, its grand reopening featured the legendary Motown singer/actress Diana Ross.
Fast forward and the energy continued with Deon Cole doing what he does best, rocking out 2 sold out shows and killing em with laughter. I find it interesting that the theatre’s soulful energy came full circle. Cole’s beautiful tribute to his Beloved Mother who passed away on this same date 12 months prior felt like a heartfelt victory lap for the actor/comedian. Sharing his vulnerabilities and living in his truth while still finding the strength to get up on stage and bring joy to thousands.
Speaking of rocking out with the crowd, the energy didn’t stop there. It carried on with an special after party at Soul In The Horn (SITH) in Bedstuy at Sugarhill, the cherished Supper Club started by Mr. Eddie Freeman and has its own, almost 45 year legacy within the black community.
Earlier in the day, the set-up for the big night was looking and sounding impressive as vans brought dj/mixing/speaker equipment into the space. Eleni Maltas (aka L3ni )…
…coordinated the process like a pro ensuring a quality experience by SITH standards.
The word was out, it’s gonna be a big night with Natasha Diggs and Chicago Legends Dj Terry Hunter and Deon Cole rocking in Brooklyn.
After all was said and done, it was time for the 10pm launch.
L3ni Love was first on the decks. Setting the event off while Natasha Diggs and the Chicago crew finished the Kings Theatre taping. Her set was the perfect warmup to what will be a night of intense energy. Her dance vibes got the early birds open with sprinklings of funk, disco and house.
Natasha Diggs (SITH) arrives in the building after spinning opening sets at the theatre for Cole, looking lovely. More people arrive, as she goes into her classic bag with disco funk goodness.
Twirls, footwork, hand claps and fluid movements was the vibe. Her energy is wonderfully infectious as she dances in between tracks, enhancing the aura.
Chicago house legend Terry Hunter enters the building next, causing the crowd to erupt. Chi-town was in the building in full support once his set started.
The sound danced through classic house, and horn infused soulful and funk vibes. When he threw on The Chase, that was it for me. The heat increased like a 1000 degrees at that point, was no joke, but a real house party does that to the atmosphere.
Deon Cole arrived last, completing the Chicago energy for the evening. Now it’s packed inside with folks having to air out in the cool ass courtyard. As his set plays out, I began to understand the funk of Chicago more. I’m watching and thinking here we have a successful talent in the entertainment business right here pushing the house culture forward. Like a pastor in the pulpit mesmerizing his congregation & uplifting his Disco Sunday Fellowship, controlling the decks and getting into his bag with the community. No ego or bad vibes, just badass tracks for all the party heads to enjoy.
I left the event with this one track Deon played that I heard a few times. One of those rare joints that particular djs play when schooling the crowd. But when its a Chi-Town crowd, they already know what it is. It was a minimal sound, old joint like from maybe late 80’s, sounded like an 808 was used with under 5 layers of sound. Smh, will come across it again and update this ending. Funny part is I actually had a dream that I was listening to it and thought the dream was real. Was literally thinking “yo this is the track right here” and had the name and all. Forgot it when I woke the next morning.
Was it all just a dream?
words by Gibril @thebrooklynword