The origins of the term “house music” are disputed. Some house music enthusiasts claim that the term is derived from the name of a club called “The Warehouse.” In the late 1970s and early 1980s, “underground” warehouse parties became popular among the teenagers living in the Chicago area. One of these underground spots, attended primarily by gay black & latino men, became known as “The Warehouse”. The resident DJ at The Warehouse, Frankie Knuckles, mixed classic disco, European synthpop, new wave, industrial and punk recordings. Club regulars referred to his mixes as house music.
Chip E.’s early recording “It’s House” may also have helped to define this new form of electronic music. Chip E. claims the name came from methods of labelling records at the Imports Etc record store, where he worked at in the early 1980s. Music that DJ Knuckles played at the Warehouse nightclub was labelled “As Heard At The Warehouse”, which was shortened to simply “The House”.
Larry Heard, aka “Mr. Fingers,” claims that the term “house” reflected the fact that many early DJ’s created music in their own homes, using synthesizers and drum machines, including the Roland TR-808, TR-909 and the TB 303 “Bassline”. These machines became known as the “Acid Machines,” and were used to create the “Acid House” sound.