Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2023-09-06



PASSAGES: Chicago musician, producer and DJ Don Crescendo
by Carrie Maxwell

This article shared 2596 times since Sun Sep 24, 2023
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Queer Chicago musician, producer and DJ Rodney Donovan Taylor, a.k.a. Don Crescendo, was fatally stabbed on the evening of Sept. 12 in his Avondale neighborhood apartment building. He died Sept. 15 at Illinois Masonic Hospital after multiple surgeries and monitoring.

Taylor's death is currently being investigated by Chicago Police Department Area Five Detectives. Her was 28.

Taylor (who used both he/him and they/them pronouns) was born Jan. 15, 1995, in South Carolina, where he spent his youth.

When Taylor moved to Chicago, he became a staple of the city's LGBTQ+ nightlife community, spinning tunes at many bars and nightclubs, including The Whistler and Smartbar. He was known for his edits of Ariana Grande, Charli XCX and Beyonce. Taylor also staged queer nights in Chicago, which he called Late Nite and The Hookup Party.

Taylor's albums as a music producer included 2016's Rough and 2017's Raw and Ready. Last year, Taylor released two singles called "Again" and "Hot Right Now."

A Go Fund Me page was created by close friends and chosen family members Alana Harris and Meredith Wohl to raise money for his funeral and other expenses. As of this publication, the Go Fund Me page has raised almost $53,000 of its $75,000 goal.

In a joint statement on Taylor's Go Fund Me page Harris and Wohl said, "For those of us who knew and loved Donovan, his community spanned across the country and he deeply loved growing roots in Chicago over the past few years. Known to some as his musical alias Don Crescendo, to others as an unforgettably brilliant friend, to his family as a caring oldest son and to everyone as a loving, generous and laughter-inspiring person, Donovan left an indelible impression on everyone he met."

In an Instagram post artist Yves said, "Don was a beautiful and proud black queer person who was very much adored in Chicago. Don was well-known for their charity, dedication to the arts and involvement in the community. They were a prosperous businessperson who enjoyed working on various projects to help poor kids and local artists. Don was a musical genius, a brilliant creative, a personable friend and loving and generous to everyone they encountered. Don volunteered at shows, exhibits, events for the culture, anything for the culture in the Chicago art scene, you name it, Don was there."

Good friend Claire Lucas said in a Facebook post, "His community was far and wide and I am so grateful for the time that I was able to spend with him. We hadn't been very close these past few years, but it was so special to go on trips with him, have him visit us in DC and keep in touch over socials in our earlier twenties … Watching him grow as a musician and build an amazing queer community in Chicago more recently was so cool, and I know he will be severely missed in those spaces."

In a Facebook post, colleague and good friend Vaughn Postema-Swain said, "When [Meredith and Donovan] approached me at College of Charleston and asked me join CisternYard Radio, I did not know how much that would impact my life. … I have to acknowledge and appreciate the role that Donovan played in who I am today. The encouragement was genuine and his love for his friends was unmatched. He had the guts to believe in the bigger picture, even if it wasn't clear in that moment. Thank you, Donovan."

About 50 friends who considered themselves to be Taylor's Chicago chosen family members gathered around a bonfire with memorial candles and flowers on the evening of Sept. 18 at one of his favorite places in the city, Hollywood Beach in Edgewater, to honor his life and contributions to Chicago's LGBTQ+ community.

A funeral service was recently held in South Carolina and a celebration of life ceremony will take place in Chicago. Details TBA.

News coverage at .

See to make a donation.

This article shared 2596 times since Sun Sep 24, 2023
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Out and Aging
Presented By


Gay News

Jussie Smollett loses appeal, might head back to jail
Embattled out gay actor Jussie Smollett could soon be back behind bars after an Illinois appeals court backed the ex-Empire actor's disorderly conduct convictions stemming from a faked 2019 hate crime and lying to Chicago cops, ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ 'Bodyshop,' Beyonce, Ani DiFranco, Billie Jean King
The Breaking Glass Pictures film Bodyshop will be out on digital on Dec. 5, per a press release. The plot is described thusly: "The ghost of a young soldier sexually assaulted by his lieutenant says goodbye ...

Gay News

Jerry Mitchell bops into Boop!
Director and choreographer Jerry Mitchell is bringing black-and-white Boop! The Betty Boop Musical into a world of color at the CIBC Theatre this winter. It's a pre-Broadway world premiere for the musical starring Jasmine Amy Rogers ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Billy Porter, queer novel, 'Tammy Faye,' queer DJ, Bella Ramsey
Billy Porter released his long-awaited new album, Black Mona Lisa, via Island Records UK/Republic Records, and it's executive-produced by Justin Tranter, a press release noted. Porter said, "So many of the songs on my album have ...

Gay News

NATIONAL Trevor Project, anti-trans crimes, priest sentenced, hate-crimes unit
The Trevor Project announced the extension of its partnership with the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline, reaffirming its commitment to providing specialized assistance to LGBTQ+ people who call 9-8-8, The Advocate reported. Interim Senior Vice President ...

Gay News

Photographer Irene Young launches book with stellar concerts
"Something About the Women" was appropriately the closing song for two sold-out, stellar concerts at Berkeley's Freight & Salvage November 19, in celebration of the new book of the same name by Irene Young, the legendary ...

Gay News

SAVOR Fairmont Lodge, the MCA's newest sandwich and Krispy Kreme
Owning it: As I have mentioned, The Ramova Theatre will officially reopen this fall in Chicago's Bridgeport neighborhood, at 3520 S. Halsted St., as a live music venue, craft brewery, beer garden and grill. However, news ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Music awards, military film, Tom of Finland, Yo-Yo Ma, 'Harley Quinn'
Video below - Brothers Osborne—a duo that includes gay brother TJ Osborne—won Vocal Duo of the Year for the sixth time at the recent CMA Awards, per a media release. Backstage, TJ told reporters, "I did not expect us ...

Gay News

'Jersey Boys' stars reunite as Midtown Men on Dec. 2 in Glen Ellyn
The original stars of the Broadway hit Jersey Boys—Christian Hoff, Michael Longoria, Daniel Reichard and J. Robert Spencer—will reunite as Midtown Men on Saturday, Dec. 2, at 7:30 p.m. at McAninch Arts Center's Belushi Performance Hall ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Kaytranada, NFL star, Alexandra Billings, video game, George Michael
Out Montreal DJ/producer Kaytranada teased his latest single, "Out of Luck," with Mariah the Scientist, on Twitter, Complex noted. "THIS IS THE ANTHEM!" Kaytra wrote in his quote-tweet of the song playing at a release party. ...

Gay News

PASSAGES: Chicagoan Lisa Love
Chicagoan Lisa Love was shot and killed in the early morning hours of Oct. 17. She was 35, and at the time was the 33rd transgender, nonbinary or gender non-conforming American to be killed in 2023, ...

Gay News

Longtime Edgewater framing business owner contemplates what's next
The large spit stains were still crusty and dry on Wall to Wall Framing's window on Saturday. They're evidence that remains more than two weeks after the incident that brought attention to the custom-frame shop's years-long ...

Gay News

Chicago Gay Men's Chorus celebrates 40 years of holiday music in 'The Big 4-0, ho, ho'
--From a press release - CHICAGO, November 1, 2023 — Chicago Gay Men's Chorus celebrates its 40th Anniversary with The Big 4-0, ho, ho!, a celebration of CGMC's holiday favorites over the last 40 years. Featuring festive arrangements from current Artistic ...

Gay News

In Praise of Sondheim: Theo dedicates the rest of its season to a legendary composer
Evanston’s Theo theater company didn't originally set out to devote the majority of its 2023-24 season to the late gay composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim. But then the company's artistic leadership saw a creative Sondheim offer ...

Gay News

CABARET Karen Mason celebrating Davenport's 25th anniversary on Nov. 10-12
On Nov. 10-12, award-winning vocalist, Broadway star, actress and recording artist Karen Mason will return in concert to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Chicago cabaret venue Davenport's, 1383 N. Milwaukee Ave. Mason was the first performer ...


Copyright © 2023 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.

All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.






About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam     
Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.