Frankie Knuckles: Goodbye To The Godfather

Chicago's Godfather of House, Frankie Knuckles, who died on 31 March, is one of very few people who really did change the world. In tribute, here are our 10 favourite Frankie moments

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1 FRANKIE KNUCKLES Your Love (1987)

One of the holy texts of house music and yet this early co-production with Jamie Principle barely resembles a conventional house record at all. A true original, not improved by Florence Machine honking all over it 20 years later.

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2 FRANKIE KNUCKLES PRESENTS JAMIE PRINCIPLE Baby Wants To Ride (1987)

From a time when house was in love with Prince and still as gay as a badger, the flipside of 'Your Love' was equally groundbreaking – a filthy, sacrilegious groove in which collaborator Jamie appears to want to have sex with God himself. Yeah, I know.

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3 THE NIGHT WRITERS Let The Music Use You (1988)

More cowbell? No need, there's plenty here on this early production that pumps up all of house's headbursting euphoria in a single tune. Let the music take... controooool! 


4  ELECTRIBE 101 Talking With Myself (Frankie Knuckles Mix) (1988)

By the time of house music's first peak, you were nobody if you didn't have a Frankie mix. He took this Brum-Hamburg robot-soul outfit's already pristine debut hit and turned up the spotlight on the glitterball. Sublime.

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5 ALISON LIMERICK Where Love Lives (Frankie Knuckles Mix) (1990)

The pre-eminent tune from house's moment of big-room massiveness came, of course, with a gleaming Knuckles mix.


6 FIRST CHOICE Let No Man Put Asunder (Frankie Knuckles 12-inch) (1983)

This 1977 Philadelphia girl-band soul track was a disco staple abd an enormous influence on house. Frankie's first-ever remix was the bridge between the two.

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7 SOUNDS OF BLACKNESS The Pressure (Frankie Knuckles Classic Mix) (1991)

If house wasn't ecstatic enough for you, how about a giant gospel choir giving it maximum churchiness? If you went out at all in the 90s you felt like you were in a cathedral.

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8 FRANKIE KNUCKLES PRESENTS SATOSHI TOMIIE Tears (Classic Vocal) (1989)

The zenith of Frankie in his heartbreak-on-the-dancefloor guise, as sleek and timeless as Kraftwerk.  


9 HERCULES AND LOVE AFFAIR Blind (Frankie Knuckles Mix) (2008)

Frankie grew up on disco and was a perfect fit with the New York collective's reprise of the glorious 75-79 sound. This late-period mix is a pearler. 


10  FRANKIE KNUCKLES The Whistle Song (7-inch) (1991)

His biggest conventional hit, a beautifully sunny and optimistic piece of pop that showcased Frankie Knuckles' key gift – he made people happy.