History of Montreal disco(s)
October 21, 2009 11:58 AM   Subscribe

Funkytown: The Montreal Disco Era. Studio 54? Qu’est-ce que c’est? By the late 1970s, “Montreal had platinum-status admission to the VIP lounge of coolest-of-the-cool disco cities.” An oral history of the city where no one bats an eye at going out to dance at 1:30 AM in –20°C weather. (Contains links to MP3 of CBC Radio documentary.)

Incidentally, the film Funkytown mentioned in the comments is an upcoming bilingual historical comedy-drama about the Montreal disco scene that, by the looks of it, will feature some really bitchin’ wardrobe.
posted by joeclark (14 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Montrealers are some tough, dedicated party people. They host an annual electronic music festival over several consecutive weekends that goes well into the evening. Outdoors. On a pier by the water. In January.
posted by googly at 12:07 PM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]

Very, very few places can party like Montreal parties. They are indestructible fun machines.
posted by The Whelk at 12:26 PM on October 21, 2009 [2 favorites]

Hey is there still a club in Montreal called FunkyTown?

That was good times, calling up your friends and telling them "Meet me at Funkytown, I'll be on the dance floor!"
posted by mannequito at 12:33 PM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]

Those interested in this period of Quebec's trouser-flared history would do well to check out C.R.A.Z.Y., a Quebec film from 2005 that deals with a kid growing up in '70s Montreal -- it deals with the disco scene of the era a bit, IIRC.
posted by Shepherd at 12:42 PM on October 21, 2009

Thanks for posting this, joeclark.

I listened to the radio doc a couple of weeks ago. (Also other great shows at Inside the music.)

Nice summary of Montreal as party destination and how it started during Prohibition with people from New York and Boston. (It's been twenty years since I read the book in high school, but now I understand why Gatsby talked about going to Montreal.)
posted by philfromhavelock at 12:46 PM on October 21, 2009

Nice! They've even got Guy Lafleur's disco LP!
posted by The Card Cheat at 12:50 PM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]

Oh. My. God.

This is amazing. Im a huge discophile and had never even heard of Montreal's stature in that scene.

One of the best things about being a massive disco geek is that you can literally mine forever. As many times as you might think you have heard every track, every story, you find out a whole other thread of it that stretches on forever in a whole other direction.

I was like 3 years old at the time and I knew that disco was huge, but it must have been densely huge. There's just so much of it. So many rich, vibrant tracks that no one remembers, or were just lost in the blizzard of other great tracks.

/end geeking.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 1:04 PM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]

Studio 54? Qu’est-ce que c’est?

Fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa?
posted by Joey Michaels at 1:12 PM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]

Also, let's see Guy Maddin make a film about this :p
posted by Senor Cardgage at 1:26 PM on October 21, 2009

Le freak, C'est chic!
posted by longsleeves at 2:25 PM on October 21, 2009

The 14 year old me feels obligated to drop in from the past and declare that disco sucks.
posted by davebush at 2:32 PM on October 21, 2009

Guy Lafleur's disco album is great.

Hockey instructional tips to a disco beat:

"... then you gots to Deke the puck..."

backing singers: "Deke! Deke!"
posted by ovvl at 5:42 PM on October 21, 2009 [2 favorites]

Great post!
Shoot, none of the Lafleur songs are available at the moment.
posted by Vindaloo at 6:36 PM on October 21, 2009

You can get the English version of "Scoring" from WFMU here, at least.
posted by the dief at 8:12 PM on October 21, 2009

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