Nearly a decade ago, three friends in the Chicago music scene came together to share their love of ’70s AM Gold and early ’80s rock, which in many circles has become known as Yacht Rock. They launched the Stay Smooth party, which now happens in various forms during the year, but their big summer bash, Stay Smooth XXIII: BREEZIN’, is coming up.
On September 5th, the Stay Smooth DJs will welcome special guests Quadrophonica and set sail for a cruise on Lake Michigan on the Anita Dee II. For $50, you get three hours of smooth tunes (think: Michael McDonald, Fleetwood Mac, Hall & Oates, Kenny Loggins, Steely Dan, Alan Parsons Project), hot dancing, hosted bar by Revolution Brewing and Deep Eddy Vodka and a whole lot of fun. Suggested attire: captain’s hats, rainbows, polo shirts, jean shorts and the like.
Book a trip on this not-to-be-missed Labor Day Weekend soiree. If you want to stay smooth, get tickets now because it will sell out. Below, the Stay Smooth crew pulled together a playlist for us and talks about the party.
CAA: How and why do these songs represent Stay Smooth?
Stay Smooth: Each song has at least a taste of ‘70s/‘80s sax, a walking bass line, possibly a brief lick of an unnecessary wailing guitar, but all let you harken back to a day when pretentious attitudes towards music were muted and times were slower moving.
CAA: How long has the party been going on and how did it get started?
SS: Stay Smooth celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2016 and this year marks it’s sixth straight appearance on a boat of some sort. Chris Baronner (DJ Kriz Baronia) and Steve Reidell (STV SLV), inspired by the Channel 101 Yacht Rock web series, hatched the plan for a Yacht Rock party and found a very willing host in Matt Rucins (DJ MR), who booked the first Stay Smooth in Schubas Upstairs Lounge in 2006. Nostalgia is a hell of a drug.
CAA: What can people expect from the Stay Smooth party?
SS: Three hours of friends and strangers coming together to lose themselves in the sounds of ‘70s AM Gold, ‘80s FM Pop and the beauty of Chicago’s lakefront.
CAA: What’s your favorite thing about summer?
SS: Life slows down, albeit from a break neck pace, but better than nothing.