Johnny Dynell

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Johnny Dynell
Johnny dynell by Alex Colby.jpg
Johnny Dynell (photograph by Alex Colby)
Background information
Birth name John Savas
Genres Dub
Occupation(s) DJ, record producer, recording artist, remixer, nightclub promoter
Years active 1980–present

Johnny Dynell (born John Savas) is a New York City DJ, record producer, recording artist, remixer and nightclub promoter, and nightlife impresario.

Club DJ[edit]

Dynell started his DJ career at the Mudd Club in 1980 and has been a resident DJ at influential New York City clubs for over three decades including Danceteria, The Roxy, The Limelight, Area, The Tunnel, Susanne Bartsch parties, Jackie 60, Crobar, Mr. Black, Greenhouse and Marquee.[1][2][3][4][5]

Nightlife Promoter and Club Owner[edit]

In 1990 Dynell, along with others, founded the performance club Jackie 60, a center of New York art club performance. In 1996, Dynell and Valenti took over full-time operation of the venue that housed Jackie 60, renaming the club MOTHER. The venue, designed by Dynell, also housed Click + Drag, a “cyber-fetish-gothic weekly” and New York City’s first weekly vampire themed club, Long Black Veil. MOTHER closed in June, 2000. New York Times, May 24, 1992.[6][7]

Music Recording Career[edit]

Johnny Dynell's first single "Jam Hot" (ACME Records, 1983) became a cult classic and has been remixed and sampled many times over.[8] In 1990 Norman Cook aka Fatboy Slim and his group Beats International released "Dub Be Good to Me" which sampled the “Jam Hot” rap "tank fly boss walk jam nitty gritty/ you're listening to the boy from the big bad city, this is Jam Hot, this is Jam Hot".[9] The song was the seventh best-selling single of 1990 in the UK, reached #1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart and #76 on the Billboard Hot 100. The term "Jam Hot" is now in the Urban Dictionary. In 2010 a remix project on Smash Hit Music included re-workings by Tensnake, Peter Rauhofer and the song’s original producer Mark Kamins.[10] As a recording artist Dynell has also been released on Atlantic Records, Arista Records, Epic Records, Heinz Records, Tribal Records, GIG Records, Xtravaganza Records, Pow Wow Records, Warlock Records and his own label Endless Night Music since 2011. Dynell, a longtime member of the House of Xtravaganza, helped to introduce to the culture at large the "voguing" dance form with his 1989 release “Elements of Vogue”, performed by MC David Ian Xtravaganza, a co-writer of the song with Dynell and David DePino.[11] As a song writer, Dynell has also collaborated with Malcolm McLaren and Pink Martini on “Una Notte a Napoli”.

Selected Discography[edit]

Year Title Artist Label Notes
1983 "Jam Hot" Johnny Dynell & the New York 88 ACME Music Corp.
1983 "The Big Throwdown" Johnny Dynell & the New York 88 ACME Music Corp.
1986 "Rhythm of Love" Johnny Dynell Pow Wow Records
1989 "Elements of Vogue" David Ian Xtravaganza Extravaganza Records Co-writer, producer, remixer
1990 "Love Find A Way" Johnny Dynell Atlantic
1992 "The Jackie Hustle" Jackie MC’s Arista Producer, remixer
2004 "Una Notte A Napoli" Pink Martini Naïve Co-writer


  1. ^ Brewster, Bill and Broughton, Frank. Last Night A DJ Saved My Life. Headline (U.K), 1999, p. 229 (Mudd), p.232 (Roxy)
  2. ^ Shapiro, Peter. Turn The Beat Around: The Secret History of Disco. Macmillan, 2006, p. 260 (Danceteria)
  3. ^ Musto, Michael. Downtown. Vintage, 1986, p. 65-67 (Area)
  4. ^ Maddex, Alison. Sex In The City. Universe/Rizzoli, 2002, p. 296-7 (Jackie 60, Click + Drag)
  5. ^ Fikentscher, Kai. ”You Better Work!”: Underground Dance Music in New York. Wesleyan University Press, 2000, p. 71 (DJ Jackie 60, Mother)
  6. ^ Degan Pener. The World Is Our Thrift Shop (Jackie 60)
  7. ^ Maddex, Alison. Sex In The City. Universe/Rizzoli, 2002, p. 296-7 (Jackie 60, Click + Drag)
  8. ^ Johnny Dynell & the New York 88. song, [1] Jam Hot, record single, ACME Music Corp., 1983
  9. ^ "Best International's Dub Be Good to Me sample of Johnny Dynell Jam Hot". WhoSampled. 2013. Retrieved 19 August 2013. 
  10. ^ "Johnny Dynell – Jam Hot / Big Throwdown (File) at Discogs". Discogs. 2013. Retrieved 19 August 2013. 
  11. ^ Regnault, Chantal and Lawrence, Tim. Voguing and the House Ballroom Scene of New York City 1989-92. Soul Jazz Books, 2011, p. 7

External links[edit]