Tony Humphries


One of the pioneering DJs and producers of house music, Tony Humphries’ brand of uptempo soul has influenced and entertained audiences across the globe. Born in Brooklyn in 1957, Tony started collecting records at the age of ten and joined a DJ club while attending Manhattan College. After graduating, he took a job in the editorial department of New York’s Daily News. A subsequent strike at the paper in the early 80s halted his career. But Tony never looked back on journalism. In July of 1981, producer Shep Pettibone asked Tony for a mix tape after hearing him spin at Club Tribeca in Manhattan. Pettibone used the tape to fill air time for a no show DJ at New York City’s KISS-FM radio station. This lead to a weekly mix session, where Tony was given creative control to work on his style of music.


Tony Humphries’ name is synonymous to the early “New Jersey sound”. As being exposed to The Loft and David Mancuso in the beginning, Tony has done a major contribution to the house music culture since then. In 1982, while still holding down his mix show on KISS, Tony began his residency at Newark, New Jersey’s Club Zanzibar. Under the influence of resident DJ Larry Patterson, Tony began a tenure that would last eight years. During this time, he began producing and exposing new artists to a wider audience.


Working with everyone from Chaka Khan to Donna Summer to the Jungle Brothers and Queen Latifah, Tony became a sought after studio magician, scoring hits like “Juicy Fruit” for Mtume. Up and coming artists constantly name checked him as an influence in their work. November of 1990 brought a tearful end to Tony’s residency at Club Zanzibar. But with it came different opportunities in Europe and at home. In January of 1993, Tony accepted an offer to become the resident jock at London’s famed club the Ministry of Sound and produce for its label. His sound stretched to Italy, as he gained a residency at the club Echoes in Rimini.


In 1998, Tony gave life to Yellorange where he released many garage classics for 5 solid years.

There is no doubt that Tony has earned acknowledge and respect in the culture and is truly a house-hold legend. He also is known as the Godfather of the New Jersey sound to most. In 2004, with the introduction of a new label, Tony Records, the legendary producer and DJ continues to challenge himself by taking different directions in the music he helped to spawn.