David Mancuso, Pioneer of NYC’s Underground Dance Music Scene Passes Away

David Mancuso

Mancuso in 1974. Photograph: Allan Tannenbaum/Getty Images

We are very sad to learn that David Mancuso has passed away at age 72. A true pioneer and leader of the NYC underground dance music scene, David will be missed by the many people whose lives he touched.

I had the good fortune to play David Mancuso’s loft parties a couple of times with my band Groove Collective in our early days. Even though it was years after it’s peak the parties still had such a unique and beautiful vibe, perhaps even more so as one of the rare clubs that maintained a community aesthetic like Paradise Garage and Body & Soul, but the Loft was always smaller, less commercial, and more of a family than any of it’s offspring. David continued to maintain the superb sound system that he was always known for. The Loft sound system set the bar. Mancuso was a true pioneer and an individual who made a real difference to so many. He started a pure underground dance scene that existed simply for the love of music and community. His parties were private members only events, allowing him to serve food and drinks to a community of friends without restriction and his parties were not run for profit. His legendary loft parties sparked the NYC underground dance music scene, laying the ground work for Paradise Garage, The Gallery, Studio 54 and a scene that continues to this day. Love Saved the Day! Thank you David Mancuso

Loft baloons