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    Home of LA Dance Music. MXNext Dance Music Lives Here

Musician, songwriter, DJ, remixer, and music producer.

John Benitez, better known as Jellybean Benitez or Jellybean (born November 7, 1957) is a musician, songwriter, DJ, remixer, and music producer of Puerto Rican descent. Benitez has produced and remixed artists such as Madonna, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, and the Pointer Sisters.

John Benitez was collecting records from an early age; after he attended a nearby disco club called the Sanctuary in the mid-’70s, he became immersed in the growing disco scene and soon became one of its best DJs as well as an early producer with his reel-to-reel machine. After appearances at the club’s Experiment 4 and Xenon, Benitez moved on to such prestigious showplaces as Studio 54 and the Electric Circus. With the dawn of the ’80s (and the death of disco), he continued DJing with a residency at Manhattan’s Fun House (beginning in 1981), and also hosted a dance show on New York’s high-rated disco station, WKTU.

Jellybean’s burgeoning production and remix career went into full gear during 1981-82; he reworked seminal tracks from Rockers Revenge, the Jimmy Spicer Bunch, and Afrika Bambaataa, then watched as two of his remixes from 1983’s Flashdance soundtrack (“Flashdance” and “Maniac”) became sizeable hits. Madonna, an early club regular who admired Benitez for his DJing as well as his production skills, drafted him to write and produce a track for her debut album later in 1983.

Their collaboration “Holiday” became her first hit, and Madonna returned the favor by co-writing another Top 20 hit for Jellybean, “Sidewalk Talk” from his 1984 EP Wotupski!!?! His 1987 debut album Just Visiting This Planet featured Jellybean in his usual production role though his name appeared on the sleeve; despite the mainly unknown guest vocalists, the single “Who Found Who” with Elisa Fiorillo became another Top 20 hit. His second album, 1988’s ‘Jellybean Rocks the House’.

Though his solo career took precedence, Jellybean spent more time during the late ’80s working on remixes and productions for other pop stars, including Sting, Whitney Houston, Eurythmics, Debbie Harry, Sheena Easton, Book of Love, and Debbie Gibson. Though he released his third album in 1991 (Spillin’ the Beans), Benitez kept to a low profile for the most part during the 1990s, doing consistent remix and production work. In 1995, he founded H.O.L.A. Recordings (Home of Latino Artists) for Latin dance releases.

Benitez continues to deejay globally Benitez owns Jellybean Productions, Jellybean Soul, and Jellybean Music Group.
Benitez is an Executive Producer of Studio 54 Radio, which is heard exclusively on SiriusXM Satellite Radio. Studio 54 Radio launched on August 15, 2011.

 

Written by: AdmX

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