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Jim Burgess

Written by Bernard Lopez

New York Disco DJ and remixer (b. July 21, 1953 - d. January 18, 1993)

Jim Burgess Jim Burgess (born in Okeechobee, Florida on July 21, 1953 - died January 18, 1993)

(DJ and remixer) More info in the John Ceglia interview.

Photo below of Jim Burgess at the mixing board taken by Waring Abbott.
Jim Burgess at the mixing board



Photo of DJ Jimmy Burgess and Erick Erikson at the Underground, which was owned by Maurice Brahams who also owned Infinity a few blocks away, submitted by Dino Calvao.
Underground, The


 

Your Comments

Allan Surdi |

I've herd many DJ's from all over the world. as a DJ myself since 1981 i can tell you this, Jim Burgess was the very best DJ that i've herd and i've herd the top jocks from all over the world. Jims mixing and timing was just close to flawless live. Im quite certin his great ear had alot to do with his trained opera backround RIP Jim, "There will never be another DJ to take your place.
DJ Allan Surdi

dj mike c |

i have a burgess mix final party at the saint send me an e mail for a copy dj mike c

Dino Calvao |

just want to ad that the picture of Jim and Erick were from Kathy Hynes

mike calvin |

any one have jim burgess mixes?

Mars |

Rest in Peace to Jim our DJ Curtis our Manager and Mr. B. Jones our promotor. I know they all passed away within a few years of each other.

Mars |

Dominick,
It's Mars from the underground!!!! I sure you remember me I was there when Claire, Curtis, Tracy and Maurice went off on you for drinking! If you get a chance pass by One Front Street Brooklyn NY and ask for me. 1-718-625-0300. I have still keep in contact with Ray, Sterlin, Dahvid, Judy and some of the old crew of 1987-91.

Bernard Lopez |

Hi Dino,
That was my error when I copied the text from your submission and left off your name. So sorry about that :-( It's fixed and thank you so much for all the great photos you've submitted.

dino Calvao |

and l have his stick headphone from Infinity and i have abot 20 sets recorded in the club itself one reel to reel from the Ice Palace where he played also.I got to meet in 1976 at Infinity's and remained friends till he left for Philly.i had 3 years of experiencing his amazing talent at Infinity and at many other clubs was at the Funhouse opening at the Underground opening saw hin in studio, heat ,Ice palace .never made it to the Saint my loss was invited a number of times ,Miss your talents Aunt Bea your friend .

dino Calvao |

that picture of Jimmy Burgess is a private picture was not released to the plublic till yesterday at least give me credit for the picture just like the one for Infinity .also he past away in 1993,his first club was 12 west ,then Infinity till 79, february 14 night of the fire,then to Heat on hubert st ,then he opened the funhouse the following month the he opene'd the Saint with Roy Thodes and Allen Dodd . then the Underground ,he played the Padise Garage ,Studio 54.

Mario Nunez |

I knew Jim Burgess suring the time I lived in NYC (1978-1982). Jim was one of the most talented DJs that worked the dance floors of that magical time where music was endless and everybody was young. I remember going to his loft in the East Village and listening to Wagner and Beatiful Bend. Very few people know that Jim was a classically trained musician (he had a degree in music from University of Miami in Miami, FL),and had a love for classical composers. We laughed together when listening to the raw recording of Madleen Kane's "Forbidden Love" which he remixed (she had absolutely no voice!)and he casually commented how he would have to enhance her performance. Jim loved his vices, but his vices did not loved him back. He was ascerbic, with a poignant sense of humor. But he was also a gentle soul that very few people had an opportunity to experience. My lasting image of Jim was his goodbye performance at The Saint, where he proceeded to play his set in tuxedo, and began the whole magical, intoxicating thing by playing a snipped of Bette Davis' dialogue from "Now, Voyager"(1942): "Oh Jerry, don't let's ask for the moon. We have the stars!" while the enormous Saint dancefloor was completely darkened...and then there were stars. Sheer genius.

kryptonbear |

Jim Burgess was one of the DJ's who played the Final Party at the Saint. At one point the music stopped and he played the dialogue from the finale of the film Now, Voyager. As the voice of Bette Davis delivered the immortal line about not asking for the moon because she and her lover had the stars, the star machine on the dome lit up and swirled around as the music from the film scene swelled to a climax. It was one of the most incredible moments ever at the Saint or any disco.

Ron Blum |

Jimmy taught me DJ in his Philadelphia studio. I went to an opera recital of his not knowing that he was a DJ even though I had heard him play many times previous, hey I didn't know dance music - he taught me.
I had the privilege of taking him out for his last dance at the Troc.
I loved him and he made all my may trips to DJ booths possible and still does.

Richard Slater |

I met Jim in Philadelphia in the '80's when he was at the Curtis Institute of Music. He'd introduced my girlfriend to his voice teacher and the three of us used to make the pilgrimage to New York every week. I was singing in Europe when I heard that he'd died and I pulled out a mix tape that he'd given me and I sat and remembered a good friend. Hey, wait a minute! I lent him my vacuum cleaner!

avouts |

Hi Dominic

I'm very huge fan of Jim who was one
of the greatest dj during 70's & 80's.
I'm very intresting for his live sets , photos and everything about Jim .

Regards

Mark Zimmer |

Infinity...the greatest pre-GARAGE club ever! Jim Burgess was a fantastic DJ / Mixer / Producer that knew his music, and was gifted musically. You can tell when someone was classically trained. It showed in his mixing. Techincal talent with a mix of creative genious.
Rest in peace Jim. We miss you.

Richard Tucker |

Jim Burgess was one the most gifted dj's on the scene back then. He was a true master who would try things others simply would not dare to do. I remember a mix he did at 12 West, around 7am to a packed room, from Jungle Fever by The Chakachas into Tusk by Fleetwood Mac that was so seamless and skilled that I almost stopped doing the lights cause I was looking at him in pure amazement. I miss him and his sweet madness.

vyniljunkie |

I first met Jimmy Burgess at INFINITY in New York in the seventies. He was the guest Dee Jay at their opening week. Soon he was their regular full time jock. He got his start in the MIAMI/FT.LAUDERDALE gay club scene, including, but not limited to, THE COPA(so many deejays began there!). Then it was off to ATLANTA and its underground. At BACKSTREETS he started his theatrical way of spinning. You never knew what was next, or what was up next. He was capable of anything to get his crowd roaring. Whatever it was, it was always BRILLIANT!! Jim Burgess was gay, but I was a straight man. That didn't prevent him from helping me. He showed me what it took to become a GREAT CLUB deejay. And we know that there is a difference. He got me into the business, introduced me to ED"THE WORM" ROTHSEIN of BINGHAMPTON'S FERRY BOAT who hired me, and the rest was history. Jimmy was my MENTOR, he gave me a break, and we know we all need one every now and then! I remember when he lost thousands of records when INFINITY was struck by "JEWISH LIGHTNING". He didn't miss a beat(PUN INTENDED). He continued to be the best there was, the best there is, and the best there ever will be! The last time I saw JIMMY BURGESS was in MIAMI, years later. He was about to play his last GIG in SALVATION in 1982. When he saw me, he called me over. He remembered me! He gave me a big hug and told me how happy he was that I was there. He made me feel important. I was very surprised at that statement, I thought he wouldn't remember someone, especially me, who he once showed the ins and outs to , so many years later. It was surprising then, but today I realize, that that was JIMMY!! NOW--- How about his re-mixes!! His first seventeen re-mixes on vinyl went on to be #1. He re-mixed hundreds more before he was done. What I enjoyed most though, was that he also re-mixed LIVE at the DISCO, wherever he was working. That became my trademark as a deejay. Thanks JIMMY, without you there would not have been a VYNIL JUNKIE!! GOD BLESS, you'll always be missed. GOD BLESS YOU, and THANKS!!

DOMINICK PINTO |

I worked in the Underground with Jim. I just found out recently that he passed away. I'm so sorry.

Your music is one of a kind. All DJ"s have a certian style and your"s was to be flawless, a blending master. I have so many stories i would like to share with the people that remember the good old days. I have photo"s from the DJ booth in the Underground and a collection of Jim's music I'd like to donate something for all to remember a great person and a awesome DJ.

Your music will live forever with us that remember. I hope you will accept some items from me for your web site. I remember the the old times & they bring back memories that will last forever

Me and my wife will miss him. God bless you Jimmy.
- Dominick pinto

Gary Alan |

Originally from north Jersey I went to INFINITY in 197? After several trips around the block looking for a sign (naive me) I caught a glimpse of some people leaving out of a building and asked them if they knew where INFINITY was they replied here. The week was July 4th and it was a Saturday night. I walked through the main entry and there was a big muscle bound guy sitting in a chair turned backwards. I then proceeded to enter another world. I first looked for the dj booth (aspiring to be a DJ someday) and found it high up and at the end of the dance floor. There he was one of NYC top DJ`s JIM BURGESS. He was mixing the music flawlessly. He blew me away when he let a song run out & down from the ceiling in the center of the dance floor was a great big AMERICAN FLAG. If that wasn`t enough on the turntables went THE STAR SPANGELED BANNER" followed by Patrick Juvet "I LOVE AMERICA into Voyage "LADY AMERICA". Need I say more...WOW?

Richard Tucker |

I was Jim's lightman on that night at the Saint. He did stop the music, pick up a rose that was given to him, and walked thru the crowd and left the club. What a night!...He did play flawlessly that night.

Richard Tucker |

As a lighting man I worked with Jim many times at !2 West and The Saint. He was an amazingly gifted dj musically. I remember one mix in particular...the Saint...7:30 am..packed room...1800 people...he actually played Jungle Fever by Chircakas on a 7" 45 rpm vinyl...then did a flawless mix into Tusk by Fleetwood Mac! and the crowd didn't even flinch!..they went nuts.
I just looked at him during that moment thinking...what the...! He never underestimated the musical intelligence of his audience. He was fantastic.

Richard Tucker

exdj |

THE MAESTRO @ INFINITY. HIS TECHNIQUE, TIMING, & MIXE'S WERE TRULY FLAWLESS. HE HAD A MIXED & WONDERFUL CROWD TO PLAY FOR AND NO BETTER PLACE THEN HERE. JIM'S SELECTION OF MUSIC COULD LITERALY KEEP YOU DANCING FOR HOURS AND NEVER WOULD YOU WALK OUT THE DOOR TO GO SOMEWHERE ELSE. TO THIS DAY WHENEVER I RELIVE THOSE WONDERFUL NIGHTS INFINITY IS RIGHT AT THE TOP OF MY THOUGHTS. ENJOY!

JudyDoggie |

His lover, who chooses to go nameless, said that Jim Burgess died at age 41 in January of 1993. The brunt of a lot of gossip in the NYC community, he performed a "swan song" retirement as I recall when he was quite young -- and I was younger -- at the Saint. Just when the room was getting revved up early in the morning, he had his friends collect his records and he walked out of the club. Enough was enough. He'd given his adoring fans their "last taste."
He did guest spots at the Ice Palace on Fire Island in the late '70s and early '80s and could get a crowd going. His mixing was quite artful and sometimes he'd just cut out a loud song and as the last drumbeat still echoed he'd play a clip from a soap opera or even better, something from Bette Davis or Ethel Merman, and then bring up the next song. I was not privy to his best work at 12 West and the Saint and am sure that there are other members of this Forum who're much more qualified to discuss him; as he and I never worked directly together.

 

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