Of Chicago’s many house DJs, probably the most popular–in town, in the country, in the world–is Derrick Carter. In fact, he’s become something of an ambassador for both the city and the style. A DJ since age 13 (spinning at the Basement) and a former buyer for local dance emporium Gramophone Records, Carter currently runs the Classic label with fellow producer and DJ Luke Solomon; last summer the pair issued Thanks for Coming By…(Classic), a double-CD mix of catalog highlights, and in October, Philadelphia’s 611 Records put out the Carter-helmed “About Now…”: Sixeleven DJ Mixseries V.3. On both releases Carter comes across as an irresistible party starter with a wicked sense of pacing. Of the two, Thanks is a little narrower in its track selection, but Carter establishes a groove early with cuts by Herbert and Underground Culture Tourist, then takes off with DJ Bang’s “DJ Bang Make You Jiu-Jitsu”–in which a driving, old-fashioned barrelhouse piano figure switches over to a synth, creating an utterly modern sound that underlines house’s affinities with much earlier forms of dance music. The 611 comp opens with a sound bite from The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman (“The proclamation papers just come down to me, and they say y’all as free as I am”) and segues into the diva wail of Money Chocolate’s “Keep the Love”; the disc’s first half is as fiercely joyful as any DJ set I’ve heard in the past year. Even its jazzy touches–like the luxe keyboard riff of Kojak’s “You Can’t Stop It” or the horns on Eddie & the Eggs’ “Me & My Watermelon”–aren’t so much supper-club smooth as late-night jam-session nasty. And Carter tries out an entertaining variety of vocal styles, spelling the usual soul testifying with the stoned-robot muttering of Stan de Mareuil et L’anglais’ “Le rocher” and the Oscar the Grouch soundalike chanting on Palmer Brown & Blaze’s “More Than Gold.” Thursday, April 25, 10 PM, Smart Bar, 3730 N. Clark; 773-549-4140.