So here at Daily Beat we are all about the idea of music being a lifestyle. For each genre of music there are always going to be the starting roots on which the genre began to grow. We can become wrapped up in new versions of that genre forgetting about that original sound that started the wheels turning. Regarding techno, the foundations lie in the original underground movement of techno that began the history that we have today. Very few artists manage to maintain that original sound loosing it in the development of their genre, leaving just a few striving in that original foundation. For me, one of those selected producers driving that original sound is the sensation that is Richie Hawtin. For any of you who are unaware of the talent of this guy, I beg of you, keep reading.
Richard Hawtin was born on June 4, 1970 in Banbury, Oxfordshire. I guess this is my way of saying suggesting that the British produced this amazing artist despite many disagreeing with me I'm sure. Hawtin then moved when he was aged 9 to LaSalle, Ontario, a suburb of Windsor. This was just across the river from Detroit, the birthplace of techno, which I am sure was a large influence in creating Hawtin's original feel for the music we hear today. He began to DJ in clubs in Detroit at the young age of 17, with his early style being a mix of house music and techno. With Canadian DJ John Acquaviva he formed the label Plus 8 in 1990 to release his own tracks under the name F.U.S.E. He spent part of 2002 and 2003 living in New York City, and has since moved to Berlin, Germany. He is quoted to have said, "I’d always wanted to move to Europe. I needed somewhere that was inspiring and where there were like-minded musicians and artists, somewhere you could still experiment with music and with life." I draw two things from this. Firstly, to all the New Yorkers out there reading this, and I know there's a few of you, HOW did you let an artist like Richie escape? Madness! Secondly, Hawtin seems is confirming what I said earlier about the heart of each genre being all about the soul of the sound. Music and life are a combination and don't let anyone tell you anything differently. Hawtin has recorded music under the aliases Plastikman, F.U.S.E., Concept 1, Forcept 1, Circuit Breaker, Robotman, Chrome, Spark, Xenon, R.H.X., Jack Master, Richard Michaels and UP, and has also recorded and performed, in combination with other artists, under group names such as The Hard Brothers, Hard Trax (with his brother Matthew Hawtin), 0733, Cybersonik, Final Exposure, Just For Fun, Narod Niki, Two Guys In The Basement, Spawn and States Of Mind. Now if that list doesn't show you what a large amount Richie has done for the music industry then I am not sure what more information will.
In 2011 we saw the release of Arkives 1993 - 2010, which was a massive box set containing everything Hawtin has released under his Plastikman moniker, as well as a new mixed set and previously unreleased material. This brings a grand total of 12 album releases from Richie, which is an outstanding achievement, and with new tracks appearing on his soundcloud every month, he shows now sign of slowing down. I happened to catch Hawtin at Tomorrowland last summer, ending my festival with a 2 hour set with him. I could not of ended the festival on more of a high. Richie was a different level to what I had experienced before in regards to minimal, and I wasn't the only one who was blown away by Richie's set. One of the friends I was at the festival with stated, and I'm quoting here: "It changed me." If you ever get the chance to see Richie, may i suggest that you drop everything and just do it. I guarantee you will not be disappointed. Let me just give you a flavour of what to expect:
I'm sure that you've all got a feel of Richie now so all that remains for me to say is please go and check out his sounds, whether its on Beatport, SoundCloud, or even YouTube. For everyone who didn't know of Hawtin before hand, make sure you let me know what you thought of him @BeaconSam. I'll post some quick links for you guys below. Peace.
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