PETER BOSCO with ADAM KHAN as part of Soulutions, Saturday (January 26) at 56 Kensington. $5 before midnight,$10 after. Soulutions@lovesmusic.com Rating: NNNNN
When up-and-coming DJ Peter Bosco started his www.garagehousemusic.com site, he never could have guessed that it would end up attracting contributions from many of his idols, both local and international. The message board section ended up becoming one of the main meeting places for local promoters and DJs as well as partiers, yet postings from various parts of Europe and America were also common.
"The board was an incredible source of information and promotion, and a discussion centre not only for Toronto but for the global house music community," he explains from his home in T.O.
"It's been around for roughly three years, has gone through a few cosmetic changes and has now been shut down for the second time in two years. The main reason this time around was the responsibility that it was putting on me. When you feel that you need to babysit a message board 24/7, you know something is not going well and it's time to look for a solution. My solution was to close it. Mind you, that was part one of the solution. Part two is to come shortly, so keep your eye on the site."
As a DJ, Bosco focuses on the vocal side of house music. The gospel-influenced, uplifting style he's known for is called by different names depending on where you are. In Toronto it tends to be called garage after the infamous New York club, but in the States it's more often called deep house, which here usually means instrumental, mellow house.
"I like to joke that I've been 'brainwashed' into thinking that 'garage' means soulful, vocal house music. I blame UK magazines like DJ and MixMag for starting this trend in their music reviews."
Probably the biggest difference between us and our southern neighbours is that we Canadians tend to get our culture filtered through a European perspective, which leads us to segregate sounds into specific genres more than they may have been originally.
This isn't always a drawback. Bosco has managed to cultivate a recognizable sound for himself through his love for the music. The fact that he began as a fan gives his mixes an urgency and passion that are often missing in veteran DJs.
Despite the name of the site, www.garagehousemusic.com also attracts interest from those outside the strict confines of soulful vocal house. Regular posters included more eclectic promoters and DJs like Milk and Denise Benson.
"I'm sure you can unite these names under a more general heading -- for example, something like Underground Toronto would probably work. The music that's promoted is still underground first and foremost. It's music that is not accessible through commercial radio."
Bosco has just started his first residency, Choice at Una Mas, with Andy Roberts and Dino and Terry.
"The way I like to think of the name 'Choice' is that it's a night dedicated to the DJs -- myself, D&T and Andy -- playing our choice cuts. There won't be a compromise as there is at other nights/parties -- we won't be playing for the crowd. If people wanna hear nothing but soulful house music (past, present or future), then this is the night to go out."BENJAMIN BOLES