Barry Lederer is a New York native and was born in Far Rockaway, Queens. After college Barry became a social worker for the City of New York for about six years. Around 1970-1971 Barry started going out to Fire Island, which was and still is a summer beach retreat for New York City area residents. It was at one of the clubs on Fire Island called the Sandpiper (now the Pavilion) that Barry heard DJ Don Finlay play music he had never heard before. Tracks like “Harlem” by Bill Withers or the Detroit Emeralds-stuff that wasn’t normally played at the clubs in the city. It was this introduction to music at the Sandpiper that got Barry Lederer hooked on buying records upon his return to New York.
One of his favorite record shops was the one in a subway station at 42nd Street and 8th Avenue where the clerks turned him on to even more underground sounds like the releases on the Invictus label.
Having gotten his feet wet to this new sound and now owning a respectable amount of records Barry Lederer first spun records at Le Club, which was a very upscale straight New York nightspot for celebrities similar to Studio 54. It was a good experience, but they only wanted to hear the Top 40 material on the radio. He would soon make his way to a place called the Firehouse, which was part of a gay activist alliance. The Firehouse had dances on Fridays and Saturdays, but Barry wasn’t thrilled with the overly pop sounds the DJ was playing and complained to the owner who in turn asked Barry if he could do better. Barry ended up bringing over two turntables along with a mixer and started playing the new sounds he had just been introduced to. Barry explains, “Although I was not the greatest mixer at all at the Firehouse, the music I played really did the trick. In the beginning they would have 200 people, by the time I left six months later for the summer there was like 1500 people showing up at the door. At the time people were into doing their Saturday night thing and it was all in good fun, but it really increased the attendance.
In 1972 I passed the baton on to someone who went on to become a real popular Disco DJ and his name was Richie Rivera. “
The late Richie Rivera played at the Firehouse and would later go on to play at the Sandpiper, Flamingo and also do his famous “Midnight Mix” remixes on several Disco 12-inch records of the late 1970s.
The Botel, Sandpiper and the Tom Moulton Tapes.