Remembering the Life and Legacy of DJ Deeon

RIP DJ Deeon (1967 – 2023)

3 min
1 3
Jul 20, 2023
Harry Levin

DJ Deeon, Chicago legend and pioneer of the Ghetto House movement, has tragically passed away.

The artist’s Facebook page confirmed the news earlier this week on Tuesday, July 18:

“Admin Jim here. I am sorry to announce the legendary Artist, Producer, DJ, Label owner, and my friend Deeon “DJ Deeon” Boyd gained his wings today. The family thanks you for your support and will announce arrangements in the coming days. Thank you for your understanding. #DJDEEONforever #GRC #lowendforlife,” a post on Facebook read.

DJ Deeon, real name Deeon Boyd, had been very open about his struggles with health issues in recent years, starting a Crowdfunder to help with costs related to a quadruple bypass surgery and a series of strokes, among other complications.

Releasing original productions from the late ’90s all the way until just weeks before his passing, Deeon’s legacy will live on through his vast discography and the countless artists he’s inspired.

Across the last 25 years, he’s made entries into widespread labels like Defected Records, Drumcode, Nervous Records, and Dirtybird, always maintaining the Ghetto House sound he brought to dance floors everywhere.

His ascension took place in the ’90s when the two genres that defined Black culture were rap and house music, and so both styles are essential to his sound. The use of vocals on tracks like recent tunes like “Who-U-Wit” and classics like “Let Me Bang” integrate the hype-man feel of an MC over minimal, uptempo, funky beats — creating a fresh new approach to house music that was truly groundbreaking when it first hit the airwaves.

Deeon was also celebrated as a collaborator, bringing his sage insight of dance music to other legends like himself as well as exciting newcomers. HI-LO, Gettoblaster, Dance System, DJ Haus, and Wehbba all have shared credits with Deeon, spreading Ghetto House energy to fanbases from all walks of club life.

Beatport has put together a chart to celebrate and look back on the timeless contributions that this dance floor pioneer has blessed us with over his incredible career. Listen below or check it out on Beatport.

The influence of DJ Deeon was indelible and he will be truly missed by the dance music community at large. See below what some of his peers had to say:

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