One of the best Remixers of the 80'ies Dance scene.
John Benitez was born in South Bronx, New York city, back in 1959. The family lived in an apartment on Burnside Avenue in the Bronx, and his sister Debbie was the one who gave him his nickname - Jellybean.
Already as a child he used to entertain his family and friends by playing them different records
on the turntable. This was the time when songs like "Don't leave me this way" by Thelma
Houston was among the hottest songs in the charts. It was back then he first started to collect records
and he soon learned, during his home sessions, that he could get the "audience" in different moods
depending on what song he played...
Jellybean started his DJ career in 1975 in a club in the Bronx, called Charlie's. But he really wanted
to go further... he wanted to work in the famous Manhattan clubs. He got a gig at a club called
Experiment 4 and by getting the right contacts he came to play at the trendy Xenon.
This was really a break-through for his career...
John had achieved his DJ goals and he now wanted to go on to remixing singles. His first remix was
"the Bubble Bunch" by Jimmy Spicer, later followed by the classics "Walking on Sunshine"
by Rockers Revenge and Africa Bambaataa's "Planet Rock".
In the DJ news sheet of Disconet's volume 2 program 5 release, the following was written:
Other memorable remixes are the ones he did for Peter Brown - "They only
come out at night" and "(Love is just) the Game", which are some of my very favorite tracks.
In 1982-83 he helped his girlfriend at the time to remix her songs, starting out with "Everybody"
and followed by "Physical attraction", "Borderline", "Lucky Star" and her radio
breakthrough - "Holiday". "Holiday" was the first song he ever produced from scratch and the
girl was of course... Madonna!!!
Jellybean now started to produce other acts and he also got into song writing. He also created and
mixed tunes for motion picture soundtracks like "Flashdance", "Footloose", "Top Gun"
and "Back to the future".
Next step in his career was to release a record in his own name. In 1984 he release a cover of the
Babe Ruth's 1972 classic "the Mexican", inspired by the Bombers 1978 version
he brought new life to this hit. He even managed to track down Janita Haan, the original
singer from Babe Ruth, to sing in his version. The song really worked the dancefloors and reached
the No.1 spot in the Billboard Dance Charts. The song was included in a 5-track EP called
"Wotupski!?!". The EP also included another song that also reached the No.1 spot of the
same Charts, namely "Sidewalk Talk". This song was written by John's former girlfriend Madonna,
and she also did the background vocals in that song. Jellybean sends a special thanks to Madonna
in the inner sleeve, saying just "Goo goo gaa gaa"???!!!
In 1987 he released the album "Just visiting this planet". In this album he tried a new idea
he had... He wanted the songs to have various stages of relationships, so he decided to use 3 different
singers in the album - Elisa Fiorillo, Adele Bertei and Steven Dante. He also choose
to record the songs the reverse way of how songs traditionally are recorded. He made sure to first
capture the best vocal performances before fitting the rhythms around the vocals. Usually the vocals
is the last thing that's added.
Following up the success of "Just visiting this planet", John decides (as the remixer he is) to release
a remix album. The result is "Jellybean Rocks the House" in 1988. This is a double record set
of remixes and re-remixes specially made for dancing to. All songs are in long 12"single versions...
It's almost like a greatest hits album, all the old hits are remixed or even re-remixed and there is
also a new track called "Coming back for more" with vocals by Richard Darbyshire.
Richard is the singer of the group Living in a Box which hit the charts in 1987 with their
song with the same name - "Living in a Box".
Download the FREE basic RealPlayer...|
CLICK to listen to
CLICK to hear some Jellybean songs...
Coming back for more
Just a mirage
the Real Thing
Spillin' the beans
What's it gonna be
Who found who
CLICK to hear some Jellybean remixes...
Right on track
Flashdance... What a feeling
Love's gonna get you
(Dance it) Freestyle rhythm
(Love is just) the Game
They only come out at night
CLICK to hear some related songs...
All night thing
Invisible Man's Band
CLICK G-clef for a small medley...
Click to buy from
Pump Up The Jam - Technotronic (featuring Felly)
Move This - Technotronic (featuring Ya Kid K)
Get Up! (Before The Night Is Over) - Technotronic
Rockin' Over The Beat - Technotronic
Techno Medley - Technotronic
Sidewalk Talk - Jellybean (with Madonna)
Who Found Who - Jellybean (with Elisa Fiorillo)
the Mexican - Jellybean
the Real Thing - Jellybean (featuring Steven Dante)
Just A Mirage - Jellybean (with Adele Bertei)
Click to buy from
I Love Music - Rozalla
Rock the Boat - Hues Corporation
That's the Way (I Like It) - KC & the Sunshine Band
Rock Your Baby - Ed Terry
Parece Mentira - Marc Anthony
Back Stabbers - The O'Jays
TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia) - MFSB
Got to Be Real - Cheryl Lynn
Lady Marmalade - LaBelle
Pillow Talk - Sinoa
Watusi - Ray Barretto
Oye Como Va - Santana
You Are So Beautiful - Billy Preston
John continues to produce other artists like Whitney Houston, E.G. Daily, Hot Streak,
Sheena Easton and the lady with the powerful voice - Jocelyn
Brown, just to mention a few.
Jellybean returns again as an artist in 1991 with the album "Spillin' the beans". Again he's using
different singers for the tracks... This time the vocalists are Niki Haris, Cindy Valentine
and DeAnna Eve. It's Niki who sings the album's biggest hit - "What's it gonna be". This
song becomes a major dance/club hit and was followed by the album's not as successful James Brown
inspired title track "Spillin' the beans".
Since then John "Jellybean" Benitez have started his own Jellybean Productions with a record label,
JB Recordings, and a publishing company, JB Music Publishing. Through his companies he has
released many Dance music acts as well as Spanish releases. He also released the Disco Classics CD 'Joe Causi
presents Greatest Dance Classics of All Time'.
In a ceremony in September 19, 2005 in New York, Jellybean got full recognition for his successful DJ career when he,
along with DJ colleagues
There's no understatement to say that the club DJ and remixer from South Bronx have turned out to be one of the most influential moguls of the entertaining industry...
Jellybean - still...
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