Analyzing “Footwork,” a form of electronic dance music local to South and West Chicago, and now also a major genre within the wider networks of dance music culture, this article presents an argument regarding the constitution of Footwork as black music. Focusing on the organizational, social, geographic, and aesthetic dynamics that reflect its status as “ghetto” music, the author makes the case that the question of its blackness needs to be understood in terms of the way that the sonic and performative qualities of Footwork mark a collective reconceptualization of the spatial and territorial modalities of race and class in the city.

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