Rock The Bells chopped it up recently with a few Queens Hip-Hop icons about their favorite Queens venue, The Encore.
"My favorite club that we used to rock at when I was younger was The Encore," said Run of Run-DMC. "The Encore had all these amazing events, and I remember some of the engineers like Elai (Tubo). That was definitely the spot if you wanted to get busy."
Roxanne Shanté said the iconic club was a favorite as well. "My favorite spots were The Encore and The Q Club," she said. "They were really close to each other and that was a time when I really started to party, and I also performed at both."
"Salt-N-Pepa filmed a part of the video for 'Tramp' at The Encore."
- Spinmaster Finesse
DJ Spinmaster Finesse recalls The Encore as a more upscale spot. "Queens was a little bougie when it came to the music," he remembered. "If the music wasn't Frankie Crocker and WBLS approved it wasn't gonna rock the set at parties. The Encore came at a time when more underground spots like Fantasia and The Jamaica Armory had died down. It was more of a Bentley's styled club that played dance music. If I came with my Kangol and sneakers, they'd tell me to lose the sneakers, and I'd have to turn my Kangol around. They did loosen up after a while though."
Courtesy Spinmaster Finesse
"My favorite club in Queens is the one and only, iconic and legendary Encore," said DMC of Run-DMC. "It was right across the street from the Jamaica bus terminal. Everybody knew The Encore and the club even had its own national anthem which was "Encore" by Cheryl Lynn."
Geechie Dan, tape archivist, collector, and co-host of Planet of the Tapes on Rock The Bells Radio, echoed DMC. "The Encore was right across from the Jamaica bus terminal on Merrick Blvd," he said. "I'll never forget DMC's birthday party there on Memorial Day weekend in '87, he said that everyone from Hollis could get in free and it was packed. I also remember seeing Grandmaster Vic, U.T.F.O. X Clan and EPMD. The club changed names to Mysteries and I remember 50 Cent performed 'How To Rob' and Q Tip performed 'Vivrant Thing' there around '99 or so. The club eventually became part of the Jamaica library."