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Bert Bevans

Bert Bevans and his twin brother Robert were born in Belize, British Honduras in the late 1950's.
Bert's twin brother came first, so Bert was the younger of the two and he had to stay in hospital for almost 3 months in an incubator after this birth.
Unfortunately Robert passed away in July of 1991 when his kidneys couldn't take any more after hard drug abuse. But the brothers were always very close through out life and their family could sometimes not deal with how close they were. They even used to finish each other's sentences.
The family moved to New York July 27, 1969 and settled down in Jamaica, Queens and later moved to Hollis, Queens - where he lived during his teens. After school he studied aviation, but he never finish the education - as he tells me himself: "If I had graduated, I would have had to go to Vietnam, so I left. I still love flying though!".
Bert explains that he becoming a DJ was kind of a "Natural Progression". He started out doing "Block Parties" in Hollis and then things more or less just happened. He never planned to be a DJ, but when he worked in Melody's Record Shop, most of NY DJ's came there to get the latest releases. They liked him and would invite him to their clubs... And the rest is history!

    

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Among other things Bert worked as Assistant Promotion Manager for Starr Arning at Prelude Records. His friend Francois Kevorkian helped him to that job. Starting out with the "Block Parties" with the "boyz in the hood" - guys like Run DMC, LL Cool J and others - in Hollies in the early 1970's, these parties led to other and between 1975 and 1977 he could be heard in clubs like Sesame St, Leviticus', Pep Maguire's and many others.
All of this leading to the work in the record store which led to Bert's first paid gig...
"My first paid gig was a guest spot at Infinity's on Broadway for Maurice Brahms. Jim Burgess was the resident, but he didn't want to play, so I got the gig.
John Addison found out about it and the next week I was doing lights for Francois K and Raul Rodriguez, and even sometimes DJ'ing at New York, New York.


In April of 1977 the most famous club of all times opened up it doors in New York, the club was of course Studio 54. It didn't take long before Bert played his first private party in the club and it definitely was not his last one in '54'.
For example he played the release party for Swedish Absolut Vodka there in 1979. And in September 23, 2004 - he was hired to play the 25 years party for Absolut in Stockholm. I had the pleasure of being there in the booth with Bert during that night and it was a great evening with Bert working the 70's dressed crowd out...
He started out with a spoken intro by a very high Janis Joplin to cut in Barry White's "It's ecstasy...", mixing it up with "I will survive" by Gloria Gaynor followed by Donna's "Hot Stuff". He also played an awesome Bert Bevans remix of "Stand by me" [Ben E. King] as well as his "Mega-Chic" medley, along with LOTS of other great tracks.
I really loved what Bert played and just watching his techniques and the way he played around creating special sound effects just by using the mixer's treble and bass controls.
It was really something being there and hear him live. Bert also gave me a pumping special white label 12" single remix of James Ingram's "Yah mo be there", which I will cherish.
In October 31, 2009 Bert was back in Stockholm again and played at ABSOLUT's 30 years party at the

Lydmar Hotel. Actually the gig wasn't really inside the Hotel, as the Absolut's event agency - KNOCK - had built a huge club outside the hotel, it was like a huge tent but with real walls and everything.
I met up with Bert in his suite prior to the gig and we hung out, talking music and memories along with listening to tunes that might get played during the gig. Bert played me some great yet-to-be-released Frankie Knuckles and David Morales remixes, along with other promotional music. He also played me a track of his own which he's about to release, an awesome cover of a classic Disco gem.
We went down to the "club" and listened to some of the other DJ's doin' their things, until it was time to Bert to enter the booth which was located 3 meter up over the dancefloor and behind a giant see-through wall of textile which was projected with Bert's name and various shapes and colors throughout the gig.
As always Bert gave the audience a great work-out with his mixture of House beats along with some Disco classics. Several of the tracks he played me while up in his suite made great success on the floor and it remained packed until the arrangers had to close the party down due to regulations. ABSOLUTely another memorable night...

 


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