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Vinyl records spin during ‘Sunday School’

A DJ mixes with a vinyl record. (Feb.

A DJ mixes with a vinyl record. (Feb. 3, 2012) Credit: Ian J. Stark

There’s no question mainstream dance music continues to dominate the beats spun at Long Island clubs and bars, and in 2012 the alternative sounds of EDM (like drum-and-bass, dubstep) have also found steady play at smaller venues. But, when it comes to “soulful house,” it's a subgenre mostly left out -- a strange happenstance, indeed, as it is among the oldest divisions of current dance.

Finding a soulful house party in New York City is no challenge, as DJs spin the style -- typified by funky and simpler beats found in house music from between 1980 and 1995, and also involves bits and pieces of soul, jazz and gospel music -- in spots throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn on an almost nightly basis. The feel is generally considered to be uplifting and positive -- and for longtime fans of house, even the newest of cuts tend to feel familiar.

On the other hand, the sound is often ignored on the Island, but -- among older DJs and those who actively support the dance community -- soulful house is locally enjoyed largely through Internet radio, mixes found on SoundCloud.com and at private functions.

However, on Sunday, July 8, fans of the genre will get a six-hour chance to experience the sound -- and, in true, dedicated-to-the-music fashion, many of the evening’s tracks will be presented via vinyl records.

Called Sunday School, this event will take place at Christopher’s in Huntington from 5  to 11 p.m., and it is the premiere night -- meaning that if all goes well (as in solid attendance), there will be more of these Sunday parties to come.

DJs Tony Troffa, Chris McNally, Craig Marshall and Keith Andrews will handle the “wax” (an old-school reference to vinyl records), and all will mix soulful house, as well as some nu-disco, rare dance cuts plus other deep, earthy sorts of sounds -- with the turntables set up out in the courtyard. There’s no admission fee. Age of the crowd is expected to be between 30 and 50.

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