DJ Pierre complains about white people colonising dance music – so WHY did he collab on a new version of “Acid Trax” with Paul Van Dyk, one of Germany’s most famous ever DJs?

Few people would try to dispute that the Black community weren’t central in house music’s creation. Yes, there were a number of white influences involved – the likes of Kraftwerk and Giorgio Moroder being just two often cited examples – but the earliest tracks themselves came from mostly young, black men in the United States of America.

Of course, it didn’t take long for the whitewashing of history to begin – upon hearing how exciting this new sound was, the majors started offering deals. The problem is that many of the deals on offer weren’t that good – they brought cash advances, but they also demanded master recording rights, too.

The result is that many artists from the early days aren’t as financially well off as they should be. For example, Chicago’s DJ Pierre claims that he – along with his band Phuture – invented acid house. We’ve explored this question before, and our conclusion was it’s entirely possible he’s correct.

Indeed, last year, Pierre – real name Nathaniel Pierre Jones – got very angry after a Facebook page claimed that “Acid Trax” wasn’t the first acid house track made. Explaining his position, he said “People hate (especially when the person is African American) when someone has done something or created/invented a thing that they themselves couldn’t have imagined ‘before’ having experienced that thing that you created”.

Taking to the comments section, he had this to say when responding to someone discussing white Europeans – especially British ones…

Which begs the question – if Jones is as against the colonisation of dance music as he portrays himself to be, then why on earth has he just released a new version of the first ever acid house track made with one of the most prominent white European DJs of all time?

This is not a slight on Paul Van Dyk in the least – the German DJ and producer has a prolific history of his own that he can be proud of. He’s worked with numerous singers such as Jessica Sutta, Saint Etienne, and Johnny McDaid from Snow Patrol, his list of remixes is enormous, and he has played in countless countries around the world.

One might go as far as to say Van Dyk wouldn’t be where he is today without the work that the likes of Nathaniel Pierre Jones put in. Yet here is Jones, apparently allowing Phuture’s record – which actually belongs to the band, not just him – to be whitewashed in a way that he would normally condemn.

But then again, Jones has form for bandying around accusations of racism when it suits him. Last year, he posted about the rape allegations surrounding Erick Morillo at the time of his death – and used the opportunity to describe Mr C as “a racist, opportunistic hater”.

Jones then publicly declared his support for Morillo, saying “I am not obligated to simply believe these accusations just because they were made and neither do you… at this point, the full story can never be known”. He then immediately undermines his own point by explicitly saying “I do not trust nor believe these accusations”.

He finishes off his tangent with some nonsense about “cancelling the Queen of England” – a line that many at the time interpreted as a direct attack on the British. Would these be the same British people who have been inviting him over to play for decades now, and who keep doing so?

Britain’s colonialist past is something which can be better dissected elsewhere – we’re a music site, not a history and politics one. But what we do know is that the UK embraced the house and techno sounds coming out of the USA in the 1980s – something which the US itself was strangely reluctant to do.

Had Britain not done so, who knows what the effect would have been on the rest of Europe? Indeed, it’s highly doubtful that, in this alternate universe, he would have worked with Paul Van Dyk at all – or that his beloved house music would have had much more of a shelf life beyond 1987…

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