Celebrating Black History: The women who shaped dance music - Culture - Mixmag

Celebrating Black History: The women who shaped dance music

From r'n'b to disco, funk and house

  • David McGraw
  • 14 February 2017
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Diana Ross

Most of dance music’s earliest roots are in African-American music from the mid-20th century, and Diana Ross was a pioneer of two separate genres. Her time as the lead vocalist of the Supremes helped to further popularize the genre of r'n'b, but she also dominated with her solo career in 1970 with the release of 'Diana Ross', which featured the legendary disco precursor 'Ain’t No Mountain High Enough'.

Following the releases of four more albums in the '70s, she released a sixth album, 'diana', which was produced by Bernard Edwards and Nile Rodgers. It featured hit tracks 'Upside Down' and 'I’m Coming Out', the latter of which resonated deeply within the LGBT community, most of whom were responsible for continuing the tradition of disco clubs into the house music era of the 1980s. Though she continued to release music after that, Diana Ross had undoubtedly left her mark on the dance music industry already.

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