The term disco is derived from discothèque (French for "library of phonograph records", but it was subsequently used as a term for nightclubs in Paris).
By the early 1940s, the terms disc jockey and DJ were in use to describe radio presenters.
By 1959, the term was used in Paris to describe any of these type of nightclubs.
That year, a young reporter named Klaus Quirini started to select and introduce records at the Scotch-Club in Aachen, West Germany.
DJs would select songs and grooves according to what the dancers wanted, transitioning from one song to another with a DJ mixer and using a microphone to introduce songs and speak to the audiences.
Other equipment was added to the basic DJ setup, providing unique sound manipulations, such as reverb, equalization, and echo effects unit.
Psychedelic soul groups like the Chambers Brothers and especially Sly and the Family Stone influenced proto-disco acts such as Isaac Hayes, Willie Hutch and the soul style known as the Philadelphia Sound. The first article about disco was written in 1973 by Vince Aletti for Rolling Stone magazine. Early disco was dominated by record producers and labels such as Salsoul Records (Ken, Stanley, and Joseph Cayre), West End Records (Mel Cheren), Casablanca (Neil Bogart), and Prelude (Marvin Schlachter), to name a few.
Disco clubs were also sometimes associated with promiscuity.
Disco was the last mass popular music movement that was driven by the baby boom generation.
Many disco songs use electronic synthesizers, particularly in the late 1970s.
Well-known disco performers include Donna Summer, the Bee Gees, Gloria Gaynor, KC and the Sunshine Band, the Village People, Thelma Houston, and Chic.