Turntable Tuesdays: DJ Sean Alvarez

Sean Alvarez DJ Image

Music is Sean Alvarez’s sanctuary.

The foundation was built in the mid 80’s hearing legends like Ron Hardy, Lil Louis, Farley Jackmaster Funk, and DJ Rush. Sean began DJing 25 years ago and since then has earned the respect of being one of Chicago’s premier DJ’s. His love and respect for the music and the culture are the driving forces behind his ambition. He has played at several famous venues in the States and internationally alongside some of the most recognized names in music.

Showing a strong commitment never to compromise his style and integrity he remains true to his roots by playing timeless sounds that range from Deep Soulful House Music, Disco, Classic and Neo Soul, NuJazz, Broken Beat, Classic Hip Hop, and World Dance Music mainly from Africa, Brazil, and Latin America.

Sean believes that the DJ serves as a channel and has a sacred responsibility of providing people with good music. His goal as a DJ has always been to entertain as well as educate his listeners. When Sean plays, he develops a bond with the crowd where they feed off each other. He is often so overcome by the music and the vibe that the crowd can often feel his energy and enthusiasm coming through the speakers. Although he is very selective about the music he chooses to play, he prides himself on his good ear for music and knowledge of how to provide the crowd with music that is good for their soul. After listening to him play, it is likely you will agree.

Here are Sean’s five picks.


1. The Robert Glasper Experiment feat. Ledisi – “Gonna Be Alright (F.T.B.)″

Although I like many of the songs on Black Radio and Black Radio 2 albums, this one is still my joint! I enjoy playing it in an early soulful down tempo set before the party gets crackin’… like at a We Love Soul party.


2. The Foreign Exchange – “Better”

From the new Foreign Exchange album Love In Flying Colors. Definite mellow head nodding action going on here. On this joint Phonte shines lyrically on his lone appearance as an emcee while he, Eric Roberson and Shana Tucker hold down the vocals. I haven’t necessarily narrowed down my favorite song on this project but “Better” has been the song I’ve been feeling consistently and immediately grabbed my attention upon first hearing the album.


3. Patrice Rushen – “Forget Me Nots” (Album Version)

A favorite from the 80’s. As much really dope work as Patrice Rushen has been involved with this one is still my favorite and always goes over well when DJing for soulfully diverse crowds.


4. Lamone – “Your Eyes”

From Josh Milan Presents Honeycomb Music Vol. 1 CD.This has probably been among my 3 favorite house/dance music songs over the last year. Despite how many times I play and/or hear it I never get tired of it. The soulful essence, energy, musical arrangement as well as lead and background vocal arrangements are on point. I also like the fact that is draws from a few different soulful elements thus giving it a bit of versatility in a DJ set.

glenn underground

5. Glenn Underground – “Prelude”

Chicago’s very own Glenn Underground a few years ago blessed us with this classic and still continues to produce great music today. This is a joint I brought back into rotation last month during my event “The AfroJazz Experience” at Maria’s and haven’t been able to keep it away from the decks since then. In terms of jazzy house music songs featuring piano/keys this is among my favorites. This song flows very well and everything about it feels good especially the baseline and key/chord arrangements.

For more info on Sean and his monthly events The AfroJazz Experience and We Love Soul, feel free to log onto www.djseanalvarez.com and www.WeLoveSoul.net. You can also reach him via his Facebook page, and Twitter : @SeanAlvarez

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