With 20 years of being in the business, we’ve certainly seen many evolutions of rave culture here at Disco Donnie Presents. From Jnco’s, to fuzzy leg warmers, teddy bear backpacks, and kandi, rave attire has always been known to raise a few eyebrows. With most society unaccustomed to the appearance of the party-goers, Donnie decided to poke a little fun at his rave family with Attack of the 50ft Raver Zombies.
Taking place on January 24, 1998 at State Palace Theater, the inspiration for Attack of the 50ft Raver Zombies was fairly innocent, “I took something from my childhood that I was interested in and basically tried to make it into a party,” Donnie says, “I used those early memories as the catalyst for what I was doing.”
As a kid, you probably could’ve found Donnie in front of a black and white TV watching horror films on the UHF channel, “It was interesting to me,” Donnie recalls, “you had like The Creature from the Black Lagoon, The Planet of the Apes, The Blob… when I was trying to come up with a different theme for a show, I just strung some of those movie concepts together.” For Donnie, using this format to think of new themes worked for quite some time too, but we digress.
Thick in the burgeoning rave movement, those on the outskirts of the culture weren’t really sure what to think of ravers, “It was kinda like this time where everyone was down because [people thought] ravers were terrible; nobody liked ravers, you know?” Trying to bring some comedy to opinions of outsiders, Donnie started brainstorming, “I took something from my childhood that I enjoyed and I tried to make a party theme of an old movies from the 40s and 50s – what would it be like if instead of Godzilla or giant 50ft woman, its like a 50ft raver. Back then, people were scared of aliens, in the 90s, people were scared of ravers.”
Attack of the 50ft Raver Zombies had a rather haunting lineup as well. Headliners included West coast rave favorite Astral Matrix, Chicago house legend DJ Sneak, and “Get Get Down” creator Paul Johnson.
Many parties derived from the Attack of the 50ft Raver Zombies theme – but we’ll save those for next week.