Scott Talarico

DJ Scott Talarico

Born 12-22-1950 in Sewickley Pa. (Suburb of Pittsburgh), a drummer from birth, instead of doing his homework in his room he would practice playing the drums on a few books and a set of chop sticks to portable transistor FM Radio.

At age 15 he played in a local rock bands with some of the best young musicians in the area.

Growing up in Pittsburgh, Scott always enjoyed watching people dance on television, a couple of television shows he never missed where Dick Clark’s American Bandstand and a Local dance television show in Pittsbugh, by Clark Race called “The Clark Race Show”.

As young teenager Scott was also influenced by a local DJ Porky Cheswick. Porky was a popular DJ on a Soul R&B Pittsburgh Radio Station WAMO. Porkys Show specialized in underground R&B and dance music. Porky Cheswick also known as, “Pork the Tork” also played live shows at different clubs and venues where people came from miles away to dance to this crazy underground sound that Porky was noted for.

Scott graduated high school in 1969. While studying music and the fine arts in college, Scott played in bands with some of the best musicians in the Pittsburgh area including Hary Cardillo and Erik Buell. Scott was also an original member of the BE Taylor Band that later went on to release one of the first Disco DJ 12″ singles on MCA Records, “Vitamin L.”

At 21, Scott mastered his instrument the drums and but was fed up with bands breaking up and ending up back home with Mom and Dad.

Exploring further his creative side he entered into the fashion industry. Always tops in his field his first fashion line was featured on the cover of Que magazine as well as Vogue, and Glamor. His designs also make the silver screen. His fashions can be seen in major department stores and boutique shops around the world.

While Scott was in New York City working on his fashion line, Disco was underground just starting to develop in a couple clubs in Paris. New York was the second hot spot for Discos’ birth. Scott’s first Disco experience was in a club called Twinkletoe Zone, in Manhattan. Scott was impressed with the whole Disco DJ thing and he thought, “Wow that would be something he would enjoy.” This would be the best of both worlds, people could dance and be involved with music and no band break-ups to worry about.

In 1973 Scott left the fashion industry to become a Disco DJ. Scott’s first DJ gig was at the Flying Machine Ft Lauderdale, where he gave the legendary Bobby Viteritti a couple of nights off. The Flying Machine soon changed it’s name to the Copa.

Scott Talarico PlaypenAfter a brief stent at the Copa, Scott landed a DJ gig at a small underground NY style Hustle Club called Icabods. He was the back up DJ to Jim Gabarino, with in a couple weeks Jim left and Scott was left spinning marathons at Ichabods without any back up. After the marathon’s at Ichabods Scott really learned the trade of DJ’ing, moving the crowd, keeping the dance floor packed all night with seamless mixing from song to song.

About one year later, at a mega Ft lauderdale night spot, “Art Stocks Playpen South,” Scott was the head DJ and a major force in developing one of the worlds most attended hot spots. It encompassed two enormous rooms, eight large circular bars, and three massive stages for live entertainment. The back room was converted into the DJ disco room and was know as, “The Playroom.” The dance floor was surrounded by four large bars. This became one of the worlds most attended night spots. During its history, the Playpen had a 4 am lacquer license and the club was jammed packed from 4pm until 4am. During peak season over 6000 people per night attended the Playroom where Scott injected them with some of the best dance music known to man.The Playpen was noted for its party atmosphere. The dress at the Playpen was casual; jeans, shorts, t-shirt, no problem. The crowd was eclectic, and the music was high energy. Over one million people danced on the Playpen dance floor. Number one Hit records broke out of the Playroom and Johnny Depps’ Band, “The Kids,” rocked in the Live Rock & Roll Room.

Scott remained at the Playpen for a decade. While he spun out the beat, he was nominated Best Disco DJ by, “Billboard Magazine.” three times. At Billboard magazine, he was a guest speaker at their forums as well as a reporter for the magazine. His achievements did not end there he also was nominated Best Disco DJ by the National Music Association and Spot Light DJ Cash Box Magazine in the 1978 Year Book Issue. He was a reporter and had his own column in Cashbox Magazine. His own, “Dance Beat,” chart was national distributed throughout the music and entertainment industry. Scott was a featured DJ with a nationally syndicated Disco Mix Radio Show. He became the President and Founder of the Ft. Lauderdale DJ Association. Awarded a Gold Record by CBS Records 1978 “Born to be alive,” by Patrick Hernandez. Scott is currently an official member of the Disco DJ Hall of Fame.

DJ ScottAt the tail end of 1984 Scott left the Playpen moved back to Pittsburgh to take over the family Ford dealership. With the music still in his blood Scott opened a major recording studio in Pittsburgh called the Robert Scott Studios where he learned recording and production under the guidance of guitar superstar David Granati and owner of Daveworld Studios.With the onset of home recording Scott closed his studio sometime around 2004.

To date Scott is currently the President of a Commercial Lending Firm and is exploring Film Loans with the possibility of writing and producing Motion Picture Sound Tracks.

By Leslie A. Borghini with permission from Scott Talarico

  • Idania Moralejo

    What a GREAT interview! Thanx for bringing back such treasured memories!

    DJ Talarico’s talent is well noted and remembered!! :)

  • Paul Cottrell

    I remember hanging out at Scotts house in1966/67 trying to do band things. Left there soon after and haven’t seen him since. It was great seeing all his accomplishments in the missing years.

  • Eric Adamo

    The playpen rocked the house with Scott Talarico at the helm. After my first time at the Playpen going there and witnessing the wild energy he created spinning records, Scott inspired me to become a professional DJ myself. I ran out to Sound Advice the next morning and bought a second turntable and a mixer. Great interview, I learned a few new things about you!!

  • Michael Basciano

    WOW WHEN SCOTT STARTED SPINNING RECORDS AT THE PLAYPEN FROM 4:00 PM TILL 4:00 AM I NEVER SAW A CROWD SO FREAKING MOTIVATED. YOU COULD FEEL THE PULSE….FOR 12 HOURS SCOTT DID THIS”” I STILL TO THIS DAY DON’T HOW HE PULLED THIS OFF HATS OFF TO SCOTT TALARICO

  • Dawn Leone-Parker

    So proud of you Scott! What a great article about your accomplishments!