Looking for a night of old school hip hop, funk and soul music in an interesting and local venue? The Rialto Theatre presents Juke Joint 2.0 featuring DJ Roger Riddle and DJ Vinnie G. We spoke with Riddle about what makes the Juke Joint 2.0 such a unique show.
The Devil Strip: How is this show different from the shows you normally do?
Roger Riddle: The show is special because I’m teaming up with a couple of friends. The force behind it that put this idea together is Eriq Troi and he’s a local musician. He also brought in DJ Vinnie G, who’s a really cool guy that I’ve just gotten to know. A lot of the events I’ve played have been more pop and mainstream in the music, this getting a little deeper. It’s a lot of old school hip-hop, a lot of old school funk and soul so it’s more like what you hear from a mixtape from me if you were listening to my mixes online, as opposed to what you would see at some of the other spots I’ve played around Akron.”
TDS: What is like to be up there DJing?
RR: It depends. When the crowd is dancing and having a good time, you definitely feel it. I probably talk a lot more on the microphone and there’s a lot of back and forth. As a DJ you’re watching the crowd and see what kind of songs they’re responding to so I’m kind of changing in real time what I would like to play next. I put together a list but that’s not necessarily what I’ll stick to the entire night. If I see a particular style that’s drawing more energy out of the crowd then I’ll start to play a little bit more of that. It can be a lot of fun. As the crowd responds, I respond and hopefully they respond again. We get to feed off of eachother.
TDS: What’s the difference between DJing in Akron and DJing other places? How do the crowds differ?
RR: One thing I’ll say about Akron’s crowd is that when they come to party, they dance from the beginning to the end. I’ve done some shows where it’s just networking and those are just people kind of standing around chit chatting and those are fun, but when there’s a real party and people want to dance in Akron, compared to other places where they have to get warmed up first before they get into it. The first songs out and someone’s on the dance floor in Akron.
TDS: Who are some of the artists you will be playing?
RR: I’ve got a lot of remixes, so songs that people may know that they haven’t heard that way before. There will be some old school Michael Jackson, Gladys Knight and the Pips and Marvin Gaye. Hip hop wise De La soul, Big Daddy Kane and even some more obscure stuff. Cece Peniston for 90s fans, which may be a little bit obscure but she had a big hit that was fun in the 90s. Obscure stuff like Jazzanova.