So how did house fundamentally differ from disco? Like hip hop, it was built on new technology. Like Knuckles, Ron Hardy had disciples who used cheap new technology to make tapes or cassettes of new music for him to play at the Music Box. Jesse Saunders was first with the primitive “On and On,” which came out on Vince Lawrence’s Mitchbal label. Unlike disco, this wasn’t music made by musicians, it was made by clubbers for clubbers. The distance between self-starter impulse and execution was, as it had been with punk, rapidly diminished.
From Chapter 52: Chicago and Detroit: House and Techno in Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!: The History of Pop Music from Bill Haley to Beyoncé by Bob Stanley, out now in paperback and ebook. Listen to the Chapter 52 playlist on Spotify.