Young folks in Philly have embraced Baltimore club music as their own, but they've had very little to do with the production end of the genre's sound. Enter Dante "Dwizz" Winn, Philadelphia's first bona fide party music artist and club music pioneer.
Dwizz's original tracks "Salt Pepper Ketchup & Hot Sauce" and "Let's Go Girl" are lighting up local clubs. While most Baltimore club music clocks in at 130 beats per minute, Dwizz's party tracks hover around the 140 mark. This tempo makes his sound a missing link between Baltimore club and Chicago's "juke" music, although he says he's never heard the latter sound.
Dwizz's tracks are characterized by a relentless chainsaw of percussion, one he says he owes to his influences--Sir Clef (who recently signed on as a beatmaker for TI's Grand Hustle label), DJ Dee Square and DJ Tamiel's Brick Bandits crew.
"I started making regular hip-hop and R&B beats when I was 13. Once I started making party music beats, people really started to notice me," he explains. "I wanted to bring a new flavor to the music industry."
That flavor is best characterized by his recently released debut CD Party Dwizz, which will soon be followed by a second volume.
Mature beyond his years, 16-year-old Dwizz has big plans for the future which include establishing a scholarship fund for underprivileged youth.
"Growing up in the inner city I've heard many parents talking about how hard it is to send their children to college, so I'm creating a nonprofit organization that will provide some additional resources to our community," he says.
Dwizz's musical goals are similarly unselfish. "I'm just trying to form a team of producers from around here that'll put Philly's party music on the map."