Chicago House Music Oral History Project
Interview with Lora “Lori” Branch


Micah Salkind



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Lora “Lori” Branch grew up in a large, conservative household on Chicago’s South Side. It was a space suffused with jazz and pop music, and a love for the church. She remembers that before becoming a DJ, she had attended several Vertigo parties with her friend Jean-Pierre Campbell, and that she would also accompany him on record buying trips to Wax Trax!. Branch says that Vertigo founder Eric Bradshaw knew that Campbell had amassed a significant collection of 12” singles, and that she was not only a music lover, but would draw a crowd because she was attractive. At his direction, Branch went to work, learning how to mix and program disco punk music under the tutelage of Craig Loftis’ friend José Gomez. She has held residencies at CK’s/Auggies’s, Shelter, Trade N Flavor, The Union, Paris Dance, The Cotton Club, and Red Dog and also spun at Estelle’s, Berlin, and Avalon.

Publication Date



Columbia College Chicago




House Music, Chicago, Illinois, Vertigo, Wax Trax! disc jockey

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


African American Studies | Gender and Sexuality | History | Latina/o Studies | Music | Regional Sociology


This interview is part of the Chicago House Music Oral History Project held at Columbia College Chicago and was captured for Do You Remember House? Chicago's Queer of Color Undergrounds authored by Micah Salkind and published in 2019. The work integrates histories of music, production, DJing, dance, fashion, and slang and addresses movements that led to the development of Chicago's house music.

Interview with Lora “Lori” Branch