909rewind Vol. 15… Shep Pettibone

Welcome to 909rewind, a series from 909originals that explores the early musical careers of some of clubland’s biggest names, uncovering hidden gems and familiar classics from the archives.

We dive into an artist’s back catalogue to uncover rare singles, albums, productions, remixes and more… the tracks that helped shape their sound and set them on the path to legendary status.

Today, 10 July, marks the 60th birthday of arguably the greatest unsung hero in the formation of modern dance music… Shep Pettibone.

With that in mind, for the latest 909rewind, 909originals is proud to bring you close to three hours’ worth of classic cuts from the New Jersey native.

Pettibone made his name on New York’s WRKS 98.7 Kiss FM for his innovative ‘mastermixes’, as well as his role as remixer/producer for seminal labels Prelude Records and Salsoul Records.

Pettibone’s ‘mastermixes’ for WRKS 98.7 Kiss FM were so legendary, that many went on to be released

Taking advantage of the nascent 12-inch format for singles, Pettibone’s remix work stood out from that of his peers due to his ability to strip tracks down to their constituent parts and reassemble them… often with the dancefloor in mind.

This ‘rip it up and start again’ approach earned him the attention of Madonna, Pet Shop Boys, New Order, Depeche Mode, Erasure, Duran Duran, David Bowie… in fact, such was his prolificness, that you were a pop act in the 1980s and early 90s, chances are at some stage you had a sprinkle of Pettibone magic on one or more of your productions at some point.

Alongside Arthur Baker, Pettibone played a pivotal role in the evolution of dance music in the early- to mid-80s… paving the way for emerging producers in Chicago and Detroit to put their own spin on the stripped-back sound.

Our playlist spans approximately a decade’s worth of Pettibone reworks, from disco classics like Loleatta Holloway’s Love Sensation to pop crooners such as Seal and George Michael. Enjoy!

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