“Lost” DJDQ project due on new Herzog Music label

Herzog Music will celebrate the vinyl release of the Cincinnati turntablist's 'Where the Sidewalk Begins' on Record Store Day.

click to enlarge DJDQ's 'Where the Sidewalk Begins'
DJDQ's 'Where the Sidewalk Begins'
New music hub Herzog Music (811 Race St., Downtown, herzogmusic.com) is getting into the Record Store Day action this year by issuing a lost classic by a Cincinnati great. On April 21, Herzog — which sells vinyl alongside instruments and gear — is hosting a listening/release party for Where the Sidewalk Begins, a 28-minute sound tapestry by DJDQ, the local turntablist known for his work as a member of the globally renowned Cincinnati-spawned DJ crew Animal Crackers and the Hip Hop group project Glue.

DJDQ created Sidewalk in just over a month in 2002, using “one mixer, one turntable, one multi-track recorder.” The project saw a very limited release, as DJDQ simply pressed up a few copies to sell on CD-R. Despite disappearing from the marketplace almost immediately, Where the Sidewalk Begins amassed a cult following, thanks to its brilliantly head-spinning collaging of styles and moods, masterfully blending together textures and sounds from snippets of old Jazz, Blues, Indian music and even opera records.

Some fans have bootlegged Sidewalk by posting it on YouTube over the years, and reading some of the accompanying comments provides some insight into its lingering legacy and influence. One poster simply wrote that it’s “a shame more people can’t hear this amazing mix from an awesome Cincinnati DJ,” while another noted the project’s inspiration on their own creative pursuits, saying DJDQ was the reason for them “initially purchasing turntables,” adding that the mixmaster’s influence was “also responsible for providing me with an opportunity to play in front of an audience on a weekly basis for nearly a year.”

Already a wide-net music operation with its offerings — including lessons and repairs, plus a variety of in-store events, like performances, workshops and much more — Herzog Music has also dipped its toes in the recording biz with its Cincinnati Music Heritage Foundation counterpart, which is housed in the same building. The latter is on the floor that once was home to Herzog studios, where important music by the likes of Bull Moose Jackson, Flatt & Scruggs, The Delmore Brothers and Hank Williams was recorded. In the past few years, Cincinnati’s All-Seeing Eyes and The Tigerlilies have recorded in the Herzog space and released the music as 7-inch singles, the first instances of music made in that hallowed space to come out on vinyl in more than 50 years.

Herzog Music is continuing its new-era vinyl tradition with the re-release of DJDQ’s Where the Sidewalk Begins, which will be issued on high-quality 180-gram vinyl, marking the first release for the Herzog Music label. Those who pre-order the album now at djdq.space (where you can also stream Sidewalk) receive two digital bonus tracks — “Strike Part 1” and DJDQ’s version of “Jonah” from This Will Not End Well, a collection of Electronic-based remixes of tracks by Cincinnati rockers Wussy. The vinyl will also available be available at Herzog Music and other local indie record shops.

For details and updates on the Record Store Day release party with DJDQ, visit facebook.com/herzogmusic.