DJ OF THE WEEK 6.4.12: BENJI CANDELARIO
Holy shit, it’s June!! Half of the year, gone like that. I hope the Mayans weren’t right and 2012 is in fact the end of the world, we wouldn’t want the world hating all things Latino. I mean, people with half a brain know the Mayans weren’t Latino but, we all know there are many people missing that other half. Now, as is customary here at 1200Dreams June is Latin month and all of the DJs we feature in DJ of the Week will be of the brown persuasion. They won’t bring on the end of the world, but they’ll definitely rock it. So, without further ado, we begin with the amazing Benji Candelario.
It was the late 70’s, Disco ruled the nite; the mecca of this world was the legendary Studio 54 located in Manhattan’s midtown neighborhood, its glitz and glamour a world away from the Washington Heights neighborhood where a youngster by the name of Benji Candelario hailed. Yet as fate would have it, it was there that he was first introduced to the club scene and his future.
Of course, Candelario didn’t know what his future had in store, but he could have never imagined that within a few years he would be in the studio working alongside some of the greats of the Disco era such as Grace Jones, The Bee Gees, and Evelyn King. Yet, this is exactly what happened and by the mid 80’s Candelario was making a name for himself as a DJ, producer and remixer, and he was just getting started.
Early on in his career when the Latin Freestyle movement emerged, Candelario was right there in the midst of it all producing some of the genre’s biggest and most memorable hits. In fact, two tracks from that era that continue to be played long after the short lived genres demise are Candelario productions, Nitro Deluxe ‘Let’s Get Brutal,’ and Hashim ‘Al Naafiysh’.
Candelario has always been a multi-faceted individual. Aside from his prodigious skills in the studio such as his keen ear for music and an impeccable ability to create hits, Candelario has made a name for himself working behind the scenes of the music industry as well. From his first gig working in the promotions department of Capitol Records to his A&R position at AM:PM Entertainment and his own companies such as 2nd Colour Entertainment and his latest venture Transitori Music, Candelario has earned his stripes on both sides of the game.
With over three decades in the game, and still looking like a recent college grad if you ask me, it is easy to forget that despite his studio success, Candelario is a DJ through and through. He has played the world over and then some. From Ministry of Sound in the UK, Angels of Love in Italy to clubs in France, Greece, and of course, the island of inequity that is Ibiza. If you haven’t caught him at any of these places you could always catch him in the city where it all began for him, New York City, where though the clubs might not be as glamorous as Studio 54 was back in the day, the underground still thrives. With Benji Candelario behind the decks, you can bet the underground is in good hands.
BENJI CANDELARIO (Only For The One’s That Really Know Pt. 1) LIVE 14 APR 12 byBenji Candelario onMixcloud
BENJI CANDELARIO (Only For The One’s That Really Know Pt. 2) LIVE 14 APR 12 byBenji Candelario onMixcloud