Together @ home featuring Jay J and Chris Lum
Thu 23rd Oct, 2003 Event Reviewsin
Jay J and Chris Lum are two of the biggest names in deep house music. Both are based in that epicentre of all things House, San Francisco, and both have been awarded with the mysterious title of San Fran Deep House Maestro’s, along with any other house DJ who emerges from the Bay Area. Not to bore you with too much info on their backgrounds other than Jay J made his name with his outstanding ability in the studio, being chief of the production of most of the Naked Music catalogue and releasing his own classic tunes like ‘Rock the Spot’ with Miguel Migs and the current club anthem ‘Keep on Rising’ with Latrice Barnett. Chris Lum made his name in the house scene through massive tribal house cuts like the club favourite ‘Big Tool’ and the slamming piece of tech-house ‘You’re Mine’.
Jay J and Lum had both already played Australia this year, rocking the Globe @ Fly and then backing up for the now famous mid week gigs, but we had never had the pleasure of hearing them both in the one night. Together @ home gave us that opportunity on the Saturday night of the long weekend.
After the first afternoon BBQ of the season followed by some crazy driving by a friend who mistook the streets of Sydney for the roads of Bathurst, we made it to home. Entry wasn’t as smooth as expected, but once inside the quality music and home’s renovations kept me entertained well into the morning.
Deep House was the order of the night and the promoters made a great move by having an all deep house line-up on the main floor. John Deveccius was warming up very nicely and keeping the punters and the house headz happy with a nice mixture of tunes, highlights being the Majik J mix of Crazy Penis’ ‘A Better Place’ before finishing his set with the cult favourite from Metro Area ‘Muira’. Jay J then hit the decks about 1am. Starting out with a sweet A Capella from a CD R, he let us know exactly where they were from, the vocal ‘From the Bay Area y’all…San Francisco’ set the floor up for what was to be a good few hours of deep, soulful house music. Lots of smooth ass beats, funky bass lines and big diva vocals were what Jay J gave us, but I was not alone in feeling the music was just a little too clean and vocal for the main floor of home. This was all forgotten once Latrice Barnet stepped up to open her lungs to the appreciative crowd. This girl can sing. It definitely was a major attraction having the live element and Jay J and Latrice are on to a good thing as it sets a set apart from the usual DJ and turntables. After her three or so songs, including ‘Keep on Rising’, Jay J stepped it up a notch, playing a few tougher tracks, the Crazy Penis remix getting another spin, before Chris Lum started with his deeper, more drums orientated sound. A few R & B bootlegs got the crowd up and going again before Lum started dropping some tribal monsters and hitting his stride. The dirty vocals of ‘You’re Mine’ gave people another reason to smile, ‘Big Tool’ sent the place into a frenzy and Lum finished his set with the feel good tune of last summer ‘Come fly with me’ by Coloursound.
The internationals were great, giving the crowd what they wanted and exposing us to new tunes, but again one man stole the show, Sydney’s’ own Illya. Once Jay and Lum has received their due respect from the crowd (Chris Lum even asking the crowd if he could move to Sydney on one of his many messages written on his record sleeves), Illya let go with his first record which was the a cappella of Bushes by Marcus Nikoli, he then dropped some jacking house which got the party going again in full effect. I was devastated I couldn’t stay for all his set, but from all reports Illya did the Sydney house massive proud and put home’s sound system to good use.
My first proper visit to Together @ home was fantastic – excellent music, not a single complaint about the patrons and a new look and feel for the main floor which made the night all the more interesting. Very refreshing.