East End Dubs Says Drake and Beyoncé Dabbling in House is a Good Thing

Oct 21, 2022

Staley Sharples

3 min read

For East End Dubs, house music has always been here to stay. As a DJ, producer, and label boss of house imprints East End Dubs Recordings, Little Helpers, Eastenderz and Social, he is always searching for records that will connect with a wide range of audiences.

The genre happened to step into the mainstream spotlight this summer with the huge co-signs of the genre from A-listers Beyoncé and Drake. Both international superstars debuted house-inspired projects within weeks of each other, making 2022 the summer of four-four dancefloor grooves.

Drake called in GRAMMY-winning producer Black Coffee as well as &ME and GORDO to assist in Honestly, Nevermind, a sampler of club-oriented sounds that showcased a lesser-known side of the Canadian rapper and singer. Then, for her seventh studio album Renaissance, Beyoncé brought in a slew of the biggest names across music, tapping Honey Dijon, Skrillex, Solomon, The-Dream, AG Cook, Bloodpop, and more for a collection of her take on reimagined classic house genres.

House music is, of course, not a new genre, having grown into a worldwide phenomenon from its roots in Chicago in the early 1980s. Nor is popular culture’s embrace of the sound new. In the ‘80s and ‘90s, innovators like Frankie Knuckles introduced house music to pop icons Madonna, Janet Jackson, and Paula Abdul. House music fans of today nonetheless began to hotly debate the credibility of modern stars like Drake and Beyoncé exploring the house sound, and how that might impact the state of the scene.

DJ, producer, label head, and house music tastemaker East End Dubs weighed in on the fusion of underground movements being thrust into the musical mainstream in Gray Area’s Spotlight interview. As a risktaker himself, the London-based artist felt that it could be a good thing to introduce more listeners to these timeless rhythms.

“I don't mind people getting to know our music that way and then going a little more underground to discover us,” says East End Dubs. He sees it as a chance to educate people about the history of the genre through an entry point that might be more accessible than obscure, classic cuts.

“You know, it's something that we share together,” he says. “I think people can start with Beyoncé or Drake and then fall in love with house music. It's a beautiful thing. Why not?”

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