Innes' Gives A New Meaning To The Word Spirit...

DJ Innes is well known for working with the likes of Traxman and supported by some of the biggest names in footwork including the prestigious label Teklife. Now, 2017 and Halsted Street Entertainment sees the Tekk Djz member bring forth his debut album Spirit.  

Working in music for over twenty years and since having fallen in love with the sound of juke/footwork, he felt it was time to make an album to tell his own story. He's not shy about sharing his influences or about giving praise to those who are deserving and you will find his album full of just that - spirit.

“ has been a life changing experience to have the mentorship, friendship and support of Traxman, DJ X-Ray, RP Boo, DJ Flint, DJ Spinn, DJ Rashad (RIP), DJ Deeon, Jammin Gerald, DJ PJ, DJ Clent, Cuenique, Jana Rush, Slick Rick Da Master, DJ Phil (huge shoutout), Crossfire, Pablo Discobar, Boylan,Marvel Browhow, DJ  Titan, Violet Systems, Juke Nukem, DJ Fulltono, CRZKNY, Shex, DJ Kaoru, Jlin Majik Mike DJ Kuroichi Kuroki, BOOMA, Typhonic, EVE, Club ESC and my whole GETO DJz inc, Tekk DJz, Teklife, Beatdown House, and the Juke Bounce Werk family; and all the footworkers that kick a leg to my trax and have continued to teach me the culture.” - DJ Innes

With all this talent and support surrounding him he was sure to create something unique, personal, and bangin’ to say the least.

Elevating his sound to new levels, Open Our Eyes featuring Traxman and Crossfire, is layered with a snappy snare, toms and kick to beef up the beat, along with a soulful melody. The sample breathes easy but gives the percussion more vitality as it travels through to the end. A D160 favorite to start the album off right. 

“I've done a lot over the years but with Chicago bringing me into the family i've been happier and more driven than ever.” - DJ Innes

The title track, featuring DJ Phil is brash, aggressive and holds tight to its form through heavy drums and the intense synth melody. It's an energetic experience and will definitely get some movement out of you. It's Magic finds Innes teaming up with Traxman once again laying down a bouncy beat with a cheerful rhythm then bringing more life into the track with those bumptious drum works. Praise II gives praise to the sound of ghetto house, juke and footwork all at the same time. This track takes no short cuts and it commands respect from its listeners. The drums are ferocious, wild and will make you want to get your works on. Another high energy track, With U feat. Boylan, uses his signature drums, lays this one down with some light airy soul samples floating overtop, giving the album some texture.

“For the first time, I got to work with my father, with him playing trumpet on Bloom. That has been a huge life goal for me to bring my family's 3 generations of jazz legacy into my music.” - DJ Innes

Bridging the gap between jazz and footwork, Mr. Innes plays trumpet over thumping drums and beautifully selected chords. Dreamlike would best describe the mood after playing Bloom a number of times over. Paving the way like the calm before a storm, Cyber Threat comes at us with it’s distortion and bass. Taking this album in a completely different direction, this one rolls through with percussive force and weirdness. Phoenix Mirror has this adventure coming to an end with a bit of everything. This could be one of those parking-lot pimpin’ joints. A progression of hip hop style at 160bpm layered with full bodied string and horn samples, it’s a strong finish for the LP.

 DJ Innes' debut solo album holds its own in a catalogue of the music we are hearing today. Spirit speaks directly to his influences and family. Now you can show your support too by listening to his story and sharing the links below.

Written by: iamvictorious/Edited by: jamfransisco

Whats Real With DJ T-Rell...

With so many emerging artists in the worldwide footwork community, DJ T-Rell is one of Chicago’s own. As part of DJ Clent’s Beatdown House crew he has separated himself from the pack with a string of top quality releases. Our D160 correspondent Sideswipe takes a few moments to chat more about music with DJ T-Rell himself in this “get to know” interview.

Tell us a little about yourself...

My Name is DJ T-Rell. Born & raised In Chicago, moved to The South Side/Englewood in The Early 90's. Basketball WAS my dream but I chose djing over basketball.


How did you get into the Chicago footwork scene?

I started listening to Ghetto House in 1993 and the music KEPT evolving. In the early 2000's I started to attend ALL the events that involved Juke & Footwork. (Whether it was) dance-downs, after practice party's, I ain't give a fuck. I started building relationships and showing my face anywhere I could. Whatever flyer that was out in the streets, (wherever) the party was at, I was there.


How did you become part of the Beatdown House crew?

DJ TY, my brother Shorty and myself had got word that DJ Spinn was supposed to dj at Union one Friday, so that was the move. Friday came and we got there but Spinn didn’t show. DJ C-Bit was there - which was dope as shit - I had JUST heard the South Side Connection 2 mixtape so I was completely blown away!

C-Bit took me under his wing, which brought me closer to DJ Spinn. Then Majik Myke heard me dj and put a bug in DJ Clent's ear. Shortly after that Clent and me grew cool as A/C and he then introduced to me DJ Rashad in '02.

And I'll tell you, Clent IS NOT easy to please musically. He told me "No" A LOT!!! Hell, he still does! But that pushed me to really work hard on developing my sound. It took me YEARS to prove myself, and if it wasn’t for my brother Shorty Dowop (RIP) I wouldn’t have even met DJ Clent. Took me a while but I’m here..


Who would you most like to collab with and why?

RP BOO. I've been listening to RP since I was 10 and he always shocked the shit outta me with that style - HELL, HE STILL SHOCKS ME DEAD! I used to buy his cassette tapes off of 63rd & Halsted (circa ‘92) and I’m blessed to have him as a mentor now. A collab would definitely be LIT!


Who would you say is your biggest influence outside of footwork?

The Man upstairs keeps me grounded. I’m more focused than I've ever been.


Finally, what’s next for you?

More tracks, mos def. but nevertheless a consistent flow of music. More shows, prayerfully a tour - hey, God got me.

A huge thank you and much respect to DJ T-rell. Catch his latest T-Rell Tuesday Mix and any other releases at the links below.

Written by: Sideswipe/Edited by: JamFransisco