'Godfather of House Music' Frankie Knuckles Dead at 59

(Radio.com) Shock and sadness hit the music community hard last night (March 31) as news spread that pioneering and Grammy-winning DJ/producer Frankie Knuckles had died at the age of 59.

His passing was confirmed by longtime business partner Frederick Dunson, who told the Chicago Tribune that Knuckles had "died unexpectedly this afternoon at home." While details are forthcoming, Knuckles had been living with late-breaking Type II diabetes.

Knuckles was known as "The Godfather of House," among the cornerstones of house music and culture through his legendary DJ residences at Chicago clubs like Power Plant and the Warehouse, where he'd spin a wildly diverse range of music re-edited for maximum dance-floor impact. His signature style became known as the Warehouse sound and was the original source of the term "house music." In 2004, a portion of Jefferson Street in Chicago where the Warehouse once stood was renamed "Frankie Knuckles Way."

As his legend grew, Knuckles would go on to release a series of seminal original productions and remixes, including 1986 single "Your Love" with vocalist Jamie Principal and probably his most famous production, 1991′s "The Whistle Song." more on this story

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