Rodney Donavan Taylor, known for his DJing, production and performance work as Don Crescendo, has died at the age of 28.
On September 12, Chicago police were called to North Elston Avenue to find Taylor and his neighbour James Traven with multiple stab wounds in a second floor apartment. Both were taken to Illinois Masonic Hospital, where Traven was pronounced dead and Taylor later died from his injuries on the morning of September 15th.
Taylor and Traven’s deaths were pronounced as homicides yet police told Block Club Chicago that as of yet they do not know what led to the stabbings. It is unclear whether the two knew or attacked each other, or if there was a third attacker.
The news has rocked the Chicago queer scene, where Don Crescendo was a prominent figure. The South Carolina born artist hosted queer nights such as Late Nite and The Hookup Party, and had just made their The Lot debut last month.
Crescendo, an avid producer, was known for their sexy house edits of Ariana Grande, Charli XCX, Beyonce and more as well as his original material such as ‘Hot Right Now’, which he also provided vocals for.
Taylor was a pillar of the Chicago queer nightlife community. If he wasn’t deejaying at the Whistler, Smartbar or other gay bars and clubs, he would probably be hanging out there making new friends.
Together the community has come together and organised a GoFundMe to cover funeral and family costs. Alana Harris and Meredith Wohl, dear friends of Taylor who set up the GoFundMe, 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 a 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.”
The fundraiser has already raised $50,000 of its $75,000 target.
You can donate to Rodney Donavan Taylor AKA Don Crescendo’s funeral and family costs GoFundMe here.
Tibor Heskett is Mixmag’s Digital Intern, follow him on Twitter.
Written by: Tim Hopkins