Theo Parrish Interview

I can’t resist posting about this one question interview with Theo Parrish because it’s just so contentious.

From the piece: “The curtain that supposedly hides all this is the bullshit illusion that dance music has no race, no gender, that its about the celebration of some sort of utopian concept. This mere notion wasn’t even circulated until some white folks were made to feel uncomfortable at a party they had no business being at, and came face to face with the fact that this music like all other music is originated on african/black experience, and that perhaps they were very much like every other Elvis and Eminem that ever came or went, That perhaps they too, are tourists, but they still want to be superstar-dj-such-and-such”

I think the first thing to say is that as a white person I generally feel I have no real right to talk about racial discrimination against black people with any authority, at least not in a field as ambiguous as popular culture.

It’s one thing if somebody racially abuses someone on the street, or if a neo-nazi party are running a candidate in my local elections, but I personally feel unable to stridently argue the cause for stolen cultural property.

Afterall, as a white person, what gives me the right? The cultural property was never mine to begin with. How dare I define what was black music? How dare I define what was theft? What would I say if a black person disagreed with me? How would I look?

What’s interesting in Parrish’s comments is that after the initial dissection of the music industry, a fairly hackneyed series of points which make no provision for artists themselves choosing to make music in a particular way, or the public choosing to buy their records, there are no musicians named.

For instance: “There are a few non black underground dance artists that simply have gravitated to the form because its as free a musical form as you can get. They don’t even care who their music sounds like, they are just trying to express themselves honestly and truthfully. I’m not talking about them. They are rare and appreciated. They are original. Whatever success they garner is deserved.”

We can only wonder who the few hallowed individuals that escape Theo’s wrath are. And hence it’ll be very easy for people to agree with him, safe in the knowledge that they know exactly who is doing the stealing, and who is expressing themselves honestly and truthfully. That Theo knows too. That everyone agrees it’s not themselves. And hey, it’s not their favourite acts either!

But everyone doesn’t agree. Barely two people who might agree with Parrish’s points above would have universally the same view on which white artists are frauds and phonies and which are okay. As with any political debate a view which villifies a nameless other can tempt people into believing they share in a consensus view that actually doesn’t exist.

Similarly, I wonder which black artists are co-opted by the money men of the music biz, and which are just choosing to release a gangsta record? What about black artists who make dance music that doesn’t conform to the Detroit ethos? There must be hundreds. I mean, does anyone honestly think that garish or cheesey or tacky music is solely the preserve of white people? This is an age old slice of madness.

Theo Parrish is right to point out that race matters in dance music. Race matters everywhere, and there are racial matters everywhere. But I don’t hear many people arguing otherwise. In fact I’m imagining some hippy-dippy 90s strawman when I hear it suggested that white people eulogise about how race doesn’t matter in dance music. I’ve never heard this argument expanded on much. The other point is that Theo Parrish has a multitude of white fans. Are these exempt from his anger? What if a white person agrees with Theo here? Is that part of the solution or part of the problem?

And why is racial militancy so much more a part of dance music discourse than sexual militancy? Wouldn’t it be quite easy to construct similar arguments about gay people in the music industry? About the theft of disco? Then we’ve left race behind and things become even more bewildering. But surely gay culture has filtered into vast swathes of pop music for aeons? Where are dance music’s militant gay people to muddy the waters a bit further?

Above and beyond all of that, I can’t help but feel that there are much more serious issues of prejudice in the wider world than in the world of techno. Okay, so that’s easy for me to say, I’m not a black techno musician. And sure, making the world a better place is less about making prioritised lists of goals and more about a series of them being achieved in tandem, but still. Is the music industry really the first place you think of when you think of injustice? Of racial injustice?

In the end, like other Parrish interviews, the piece is so very scriptural, so biblical. It’s a cryptic guarded sermon that doesn’t really pin the blame on anyone or anything in particular. It leaves just enough get out clauses, including a nice big one for his white fans and buddies at the end. Mind you the question is pretty leading to begin with.

When the dust settles, Theo Parrish could be ranting about you, me, his own fans, or the crowd at a Tiesto concert, provided they’re white. Or he could be ranting about all of these! But then if he got specific the impact would be lost as people argued about whether they liked a producer he blasted or didn’t like him. How enfeebling nuances can be eh?

In this piece, forget nuances. The essential ingredients here are hellfire and brimstone, and what a unifying force they can be. Thousands of people might agree with this article, yet none of them will agree with each other. Bolshy bluster is inspiring, if you doubt it, look at who’s the US president.

The only climbdown from all this relativism is that I think a black person really does have more of a right to comment on cultural appropriation or discrimination than a white person. So as Theo Parrish’s view of the world, this tells you some interesting stuff about Theo Parrish.

Beyond that, as soon as a white person begins to talk about or agree too keenly with the idea of white people “stealing” music of black origin, you must ask what right a white person has to define such a theft? Isn’t that once again seizing the controls?

I wonder which race invented the idea of cultural appropriation in the first place. If you know the answer, please tell me.

Comments 44

  1. jeremy wrote:

    A lot of American imports are really good: movies, computer technology, porn, space exploration, GPS. But there are other American things that really that the rest of the world would be better off without: Hummers, sports, evangelical religion.

    The less people are exposed to American, and especially Detroit-style race relations, the better.

    Sad.

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 11:38 am
  2. tom/pipecock wrote:

    “But there are other American things that really that the rest of the world would be better off without: Hummers, sports, evangelical religion.”

    we invented sports and evangelical religion? you better check yourself on that one, sonny.

    “The less people are exposed to American, and especially Detroit-style race relations, the better.”

    ignoring it isn’t going to make it go away. talk about a pointless comment.

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 5:01 pm
  3. Ronan wrote:

    For a guy concerned about the effects of racism you are pretty hateful Tom.

    Do you ever consider just being nicer to people as part of your plan to change the world?

    Genuine question…..I’m sick of the arguments.

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 5:12 pm
  4. clom wrote:

    Ronan,

    This is post is so on the money.

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 5:21 pm
  5. tom/pipecock wrote:

    i hate based on peoples ideas, choices they make, things they have control over. i don’t hate based on race, gender, etc. the difference is huge.

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 5:21 pm
  6. clom wrote:

    Durrrr.

    My post is not so is on the money.
    Feel free to delete/edit.
    Or keep it as a warning to others on the perils of drinking two bottles of Irn Bru in the afternoon.

    :)

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 5:23 pm
  7. Ronan wrote:

    it’s still hate…just for the record, this’ll be the last time you post here since I want there to be one place on the internet where discussions about music can be about music and not tom pipecock. maybe that’ll make you happy, maybe you’ll be delighted, I frankly don’t care, I just can’t be bothered moderating a guy whose dayjob is posting on every single dance music messageboard.

    I reckon most people will be happy with that too.

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 5:23 pm
  8. Ronan wrote:

    @Clom thanks, glad you liked the post.

    I applied for a job in Glasgow recently so might be on the Irn Bru one day soon!

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 5:31 pm
  9. jeremy wrote:

    A wise decision, Ronan

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 5:31 pm
  10. Sven wrote:

    I saw Theo Parrish a couple of weeks ago at Sonar and his set blew me away. The records he played sounded very “black”, a lot of soul and house straight from Detroit. I enjoyed every minute of it, and so did the rest of the crowd that must have been 80% white. Theo seemed to enjoy himself too behind his decks, but after reading this interview, I wonder what he’s thinking when he is up on stage in front of a mostly white crowd playing his black music? Does he allow us (white folks) to like his music or not?

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 6:21 pm
  11. Tom B. wrote:

    I can’t believe your banning someone cos u dont agree with what they say !!! Fucking hell Ronan …

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 7:00 pm
  12. Ronan wrote:

    it’s not because I disagree, it’s because I want discussions on this site to be more than me arguing with Tom about the exact same things, every single time. I want new posters to feel welcome and discussions to be open and not some weird feud that nobody understands.

    if he wants to disagree with me on his site then fine….one thing is sure, Tom will be disagreeing with me in plenty of other places…

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 7:17 pm
  13. Ronan wrote:

    “Theo seemed to enjoy himself too behind his decks, but after reading this interview, I wonder what he’s thinking when he is up on stage in front of a mostly white crowd playing his black music?”

    It’d be interesting to pose that as a follow up question.

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 7:23 pm
  14. Tomo wrote:

    ‘But the copying goes on here the worst. We don’t have a lot of protection against thieves because their aren’t a lot of lawyers, because there’s usually just enough money for the artists to survive on, unless you helped father the form’.

    did he pay any of the artists he edited on the ugly edits? like fuck he did.

    so it’s ok for him to sample/ edit black artists because he’s also black and its seen as an art when he does it, but as soon as a white person samples the same artist or samples him, its stealing/ copying.

    Posted 16 Jul 2008 at 11:49 pm
  15. Jacob wrote:

    Damn good point, actually.

    Posted 17 Jul 2008 at 8:48 am
  16. Barry wrote:

    Yeah , its a pitty Theo has this hostile attitude to anyone who doesnt fit to a fairly specific catagory . I know i dont , but i still love his music .

    Posted 17 Jul 2008 at 1:09 pm
  17. Woody wrote:

    Being a black techno listener/musician, Ive never felt that there was a racial barrier between black and white listeners. Yes, obviously there is one race that follows the genre more then the other, but I have never felt like what Theo explains here ” This mere notion wasn’t even circulated until some white folks were made to feel uncomfortable at a party they had no business being at”. Maybe in Detroit this is the case but here outside NYC I never get this vibe. Many a times have I been the only “Black” person at a party but I feel that I nor anyone else is affected by this fact. Everyone that is there, is there for the music. When I walk into the club everything else is thrown out the window and the music is the only thing that matters at that point and time. In addition, I wouldn’t describe anything with soul or funk to be “Black” music. Just because it has a certain sound that has been often used by black artist over the years doesn’t define it as “Black” music, in my opinion. I could go on about this topic but I think I have ranted enough…..White music/Black music…does it really matter? Shouldn’t it be all about the music anyway? What difference does it make?

    Posted 17 Jul 2008 at 2:18 pm
  18. pete wrote:

    If anything, Theo Parrish is being the racist.

    Posted 17 Jul 2008 at 4:33 pm
  19. chaton wrote:

    I think Theo Parrish, like moodymann or mad mike, has strong values about faith, way of life, the concept of black community, music. no doubt that he is a really good person. the problem is that probably 99% of the black community don’t even know his existance nor his music. on the other hand the little europeans white thrash who are really at the opposite of his believe, make him a superstar. it’s like marilyn manson playing at church every sunday. enough to be really really disappointed…. so may be now he prefer to stay true to his way of thinking, even if he loose his audience…
    talking about samples : it’s really funny to see how techno/house artists can be really mad when there’s sampled by another techno artist. aril brihka vs shlomi aber recently, dan bell/josh wink, brinkmann/raresh…. but on the other hand when djs pick up samples in another musical category(mothership/ coltrane, ricardo/enfants, luciano/amelie poulain, parrish/ugly edit,brinkmann/madonna), they’re acclaimed and the techno scene agree….weird. sampling is part of our culture. the rule is : NO RULE !

    Posted 18 Jul 2008 at 9:22 am
  20. t parrish wrote:

    clarifications: ugly edits were a rookie mistake, didnt think them through. Never to be re released again until properly liscensed, which is in the process now(even though I got the go ahead from a few). Mistake:Rage is not an all white band. When any white musician deals with social dynamics, its Its appreciated except by the ignorant. If black musician talks about social dynamics is can make some white folks uneasy,Theyll flip it and say arent you grateful you have white fans?youre not talking about us now are you? It seems like he has a good time when he plays, he doesnt seem angry. sometimes theyll call you rascist for even expressing an opinion that doesnt fit thier world view.Some arent very confrontational, hence prompting them to bring up the bs utopian idea…..when this music was very young, in chicago you would never see any white folks on the southside at a basement party. at the time underground dance music was part of the black community.o in terms of the theivery, sample what you want, but damn, be yourself. Sampling music from any cultural source does not give anyone license to pretend to be anything other than who they are.
    And if an opinion from an artist makes you uncomfortable enough to question your support of that artist, than you really dont want that artist to be honest. you want that artist to cater to you. That artist is responsible for his work, but not your opinion of them. And yes artist just like everyone else makes mistakes, (in my case putting out the ugly edits). Other than that, these days and times require long hard looks at social dynamics given the facades technology provides that we hide behind to avoid dealing with each other honestly.

    please carry on!!!

    Theo Parrish

    Posted 18 Jul 2008 at 5:30 pm
  21. Ronan wrote:

    Most of the time when any artist of any race talks about social dynamics people are critical….at least that’s how I see it.

    Posted 18 Jul 2008 at 7:10 pm
  22. Sven wrote:

    “And if an opinion from an artist makes you uncomfortable enough to question your support of that artist, than you really dont want that artist to be honest. you want that artist to cater to you.”

    I found his set from Sonar on the Red Bull Music Academy website. Have been listening to it all day. I still think it is amazing music, despite this whole discussion.

    Posted 19 Jul 2008 at 6:06 pm
  23. todd wrote:

    does this mean theo doesn’t want to be facebook friends with me ?

    Posted 19 Jul 2008 at 8:21 pm
  24. Jon wrote:

    I thank Theo for his honesty and hope for the day when the term ‘cultural ownership’ is no more.

    Posted 20 Jul 2008 at 1:04 pm
  25. kent williams wrote:

    Honestly, the only objection I had to Theo’s rant was what I call the ‘Chomsky They.’ Chomsky’s writing is rife with discourse about a hypothetical ‘they’ who collude to make us all miserable for their own fun and profit.

    Theo’s ‘they,’ as you point out — is a straw man. The ‘they’ that controls popular entertainment and mainstream dance music can’t possibly be as coherent and deliberate a cabal as his comments imply.

    If you start looking at the individual people in the popular music business, what you see is people making decisions based on their own fear of losing their jobs. Their agenda is their next paycheck, not any sort of racial discrimination. Martin Luther King and Motown — and the enthusiasm of fans of all races — killed the ‘race records’ idea dead in the 60s. When it comes to commercial pop music, the only color that matters is green.

    As for banning Tom, whatever. Everyone who objects to Tom that I’ve observed objects to the way he expresses himself, without addressing the points he raises. Now style counts for something, undoubtedly, but crap, how can someone be active in Internet discourse and be thin-skinned? Why not actually answer the questions he raises, and let the style slide?

    For that matter, I sure don’t see the hatefulness of his comment here. I have to assume that something he said in comments on other posts are the real issue.

    Posted 20 Jul 2008 at 6:46 pm
  26. Ronan wrote:

    Well, you can give me the benefit of the doubt or not, that’s really up to you. I don’t want to expand too much because then we’re back to the problem. If anyone wants an emailed reasoning about this then go ahead…..

    Posted 20 Jul 2008 at 6:54 pm
  27. Scott Ferguson wrote:

    First off I have to say that when you are asked a question as Theo was, you may get an answer that does not please everyone. Also I think to properly judge Theo you would have to be in his shoes. (meaning afro-american) You would need to spend a good amount of time in Detroit. (which for me, is the most racially segregated area inside the United States) Also to judge Theo you may have to consider the fact that virtually everything that you know and love about music would not exist without Black Americans and you would have to take into consideration that the majority of the American mainstream musical culture does not acknowledge Afro Americans contribution. I think you would find it frustrating, demoralizing, and down right sad. Sometimes its to easy to criticize standing on the outside. (this goes for me, you, and Theo too) I think most importantly if Theo’s music or Deejay sets move you or make you feel good then that is what we should be concentrating on. Theo and Kenny inspired me to buy records, get turntables, learn gear, produce music, make records, and be passionate about something I love. All this despite their political views (whatever those might be). Well, I can honestly say that I believe Theo is a good person who doesn’t hate ‘white folks’. I think he gets frustrated like everyone. He likes to Deejay to anyone one who enjoys it and appreciates it. If you don’t believe me, listen to ‘Violet Green’. It will tell you everything you will ever need to know about Theo Parrish.

    Posted 22 Jul 2008 at 7:41 am
  28. nic wrote:

    ‘Also to judge Theo you may have to consider the fact that virtually everything that you know and love about music would not exist without Black Americans’

    statements like this one perpetuate the myth that music simply did not exist until african americans started doing their thing. absolute rubbish..

    the role they have played in contemporary music ie 20th century is enormous and the american mainstream does not acknowledge this.. but what has the american mainstream ever gotten right? its the mainstream because it follows trends instead of creating them.

    good music comes from all over. music created with an ultimate agenda to ‘sound’ like it has come from a particular place/time/race will probably be bad music =P

    Posted 22 Jul 2008 at 9:07 pm
  29. too old to care wrote:

    Aint got much to say, seems like a storm in a tea cup in a place so far away. but feel i close thoe through his music. and i have understood a lot through his music, i dont see much other than valid points made by theo albeit, lets not forget what quantum physics has tought us: the object of observation will manifest itself according the observer. None of us can escape that. The only way we can find Truth, thus Peace, is to be sincere and challenge what you think you know.

    hope to see you at plastic people Theo,

    and play some Elvis!

    Posted 22 Jul 2008 at 11:19 pm
  30. Scott Ferguson wrote:

    ‘Also to judge Theo you may have to consider the fact that virtually everything that you know and love about music would not exist without Black Americans’

    “statements like this one perpetuate the myth that music simply did not exist until african americans started doing their thing. absolute rubbish..’

    Actually, it is complete rubbish. I meant to say, “I would have to consider the fact that virtually everything I know and love about music would not exist without Black Americans.” (& Gypsies) :)

    Posted 23 Jul 2008 at 2:37 am
  31. cul wrote:

    “I meant to say, “I would have to consider the fact that virtually everything I know and love about music would not exist without Black Americans.” (& Gypsies)”

    True. It wouldnt exist without white people either.

    I agree black americans have started more original styles over the past 100 years than white people. I can only think of noise, punk and (maybe) industrial?? Either way it doesnt matter becuase black people live with white people. They listen to some white music (even if it is black music filtered through a white perspective/experience – it still is filtered). they probably got influenced a little bit. Its all part of the mix.

    There wouldnt be as much reggae in this world if it werent for (english) white people. Because reggae (as far as im aware) was an attempt to copy american r+b and jazz styles while giving it a tropical island twist. Except that americans weren’t into it at all. But it flew out the stores in england so more jamaican musicians were able to create music and have an outlet.

    Yeah island is owned by a white chap (of jamaican heritage). But maybe thats what you need to sell shit to white people – more detailed knowledge and understanding of white culture and buying habbits?

    Is that institutionally racist? I’m not sure. Its just practical isnt it? There probably are less finance options available to black people to set up record labels but I never knew who owned the label when i bought the music. why the fuck would i care?

    If i was trying to sell music to american’s i’d probably hire an american guy to help me. If i was selling to chicks i’d ask some women. If i’m trying to sell to white people (which, we all seem to admit is the most important market in terms of what motivates record labels) i’m gonna hire a white boy to do it.

    Yeah the legality of music has been created by white people from a white musical heritage. They value melody over rhythm. They value ownership over creativity. But is it a race issue? or is it a modern/ancient issue?

    Those rules were set up to look after the popular musicians of the time. Times have changed. I guess its up to the modern musician to try and change things again. Organise a union!

    Posted 23 Jul 2008 at 3:31 am
  32. nic wrote:

    ‘I meant to say, “I would have to consider the fact that virtually everything I know and love about music would not exist without Black Americans.” (& Gypsies) :)

    yes that is fair dinkum scott 😉

    speaking of gypsies and black music…

    http://diduseethewords.blogspot.com/2008/03/let-music-play.html

    Posted 23 Jul 2008 at 6:34 pm
  33. Ciaran wrote:

    This has turned into a pretty ridiculous argument, it would seem that everyone has segregated music into different races which is just odd. African American influence is certainly appreciated from the European scene though I do understand that by American terms dance music is largely unappreciated considering its roots. I don’t really understand what Theo Parrish is getting at but I don’t believe he’s downright racist yet he portrays that people are simpletons because they don’t look at music the way he does…

    Posted 27 Jul 2008 at 12:46 pm
  34. bob wrote:

    I dunno pretty full on speach there intrestind i play alot of theo parish music i like alot of his music and specilise in in alot of detroit chicargo house music. I have been bashed by blacks walking down the street and ridiculed for being white i dont think anybody cared the i listened to theo parish whos that he doesnt play comercial hip hop anyway.Its a good thing i dont have to wear a big fubu jacket wors are just that

    Posted 18 Aug 2008 at 8:08 am
  35. dave wrote:

    theo is right and i think that everyone reading this thread knows it too-racism is WHEN YOU FEEL SUPERIOR because of your ethnicity;thus discriminating others-Theo..would you call yourself a rascist? hell no..the effects would be too negative for your musicmarketing; thats why you were shunned and labelled a rascist in germany etc back in 2002;-germans dont get your message-its a homogenious country and they arent that mentally advanced to know the difference between outright racism and an OBSERVATION; which in this case would label the observer as being a rascist-pretty stupid , isnt it?which was very unfair especially when you get wannabe’s purveying “white deep house” and calling themselves ..ixon; who in one article in the groove magazine explicitly said-why do all black americans constantly moan about the origin of house music;which is soul and funk and disco(blackmusic)-why cant it be more upfront and creative? heh? -(guess where the name came from- KDJ ?)-what Theo is trying to get at, i think/assume is that if you are white, you need less talent,looks are enough(look at Djanes-how many mix well and rock without having to show their cleavage??)if there is an available white dude who has 15% in his soul and and deliver 25%-he’s good enough for the industry..and for his fans..dont ask me what the purpose is; maybe it goes way deep into idolism..wanting to see your own people do well-but it has to be pure not faked-the rest is marketing etc–and mind you , its the gigs which rake the cash, not the record deals.and of course, it makes you an angry man. because that is stealing without style and class.look at kruder and dorfmeister-all their work have been sampled-from bob james to….how come the groove magazine in germany always mentions sven vath, dj t(ok.he owns it) and ritchie hawtin and ricardo villalobos?? look at madonna-she literally …cked herself to the top; she cant sing to save her life, her last attempt for a comeback used an abba sample to fool a whole new generation..hello..whats goin on?-what about jellybean benitez who founded her and made her big?what is this weird bilderberg like movement? so, its all true,bruddas and sistas.sell your music on your own and be the master of your own destiny-theo, my respect to you for having the guts to voice this out as freely as you do.life is but short and you will not go unnoticed. god bless.

    Posted 22 Aug 2008 at 8:20 am
  36. Ronan wrote:

    have you been the victim of racism recently?

    Posted 22 Aug 2008 at 9:05 am
  37. dave wrote:

    we are all victims of racism everyday-get used to it-german whites too get their bit in areas like kreuzberg, moabit, neukölln in berlin.its common knowledge here.
    we read about nations being rascist to one another everyday when some dispute appears.the question is how you deal with it-today its more subtle-you get blocked carreerwise-i recently read how spike lee’s movies never make it in germany-the 25th hour etc were amazing movies but just like how theo and moodymann were labelled rascists then and how no booking agency wanted to handle them here back then would tel you how deep denial is here-its like you become the devil himself;exposing the truth.no one wants to talk about it; its spreading “bad vibes” and sometimes i do feel sorry for them because no one actually likes them( except for berlin)-germany is a toilet when it comes to such issues-the country is run by the cdu which supported the nazi regime then and terms like “fatherland” are used…hello? merkel didnt want obama to speak at the brandenburger gate last month ( her reason/excuse was that its a historical place and not to be used for a political campaign)BUT neo nazis have marched through during a legalised demo(all of a sudden its democracy) carrying slogans etc; meaning they are sending a message-they didnt have to speak on a microphone but their message was in the form of huge posters-isnt that the same thing? to answer your question-no-because i dont let them.you must bear in mind that a rascist is the person with the problem.its hard sometimes but what can i say? but i observe stuff like this everyday.sickening, but the truth sets you free, eventually.

    Posted 22 Aug 2008 at 11:09 am
  38. clom wrote:

    a digression,

    where did this DJane term come from?

    it makes me want to die.

    Posted 25 Aug 2008 at 1:00 pm
  39. James Braun wrote:

    I grew up listening to Theo Parrish and he was as important to my musical upbringing as I’m sure May, Saunderson etc was to him, but I’m not black and I grew up in Europe. I see his points, but it is like hearing a speech from the sixties. Until Americans wake up from there slumber, after the decline of the US as a sole super power, and get into the global mind set, this will just be a self-perpetuating status quo. Race? I don’t care, I don’t even notice because it doesn’t matter to me. We’re all human beings, and this isn’t some hippe hipocricy, it’s just fact. So dry your eyes Theo. There would be no Berlin scene without a Detroit scene, but everything has roots – no matter colour. And if you’re tired of the US, come over here. We still love you.

    Posted 31 Oct 2008 at 9:03 am
  40. andre wrote:

    lol totally agree with this dude , and I think alot of music would not exist without the black people getting involved. Yeah, of course they were influenced by European culture, but at the end of the day, who isnt influenced by someonelse’s culture. At the end of the day , they dont get acknowledged, and thats what really sucks, not that they originated it, but they originated it, and they suffer for their creativity, all because white people want ot stay on top of everything

    Posted 09 Feb 2009 at 5:52 am
  41. Ross wrote:

    Having read this message, listened to many of the ugly edits, bought one, mistakenly bought a bad bootleg of one too, and downloaded and listened to others, I say that:

    I love Theo’s music, I love the music of which he has sampled, I love each and the other in their respective contexts.
    Theo, if you are there i’d like to say that having seen you three times now, and love the sound that you have to offer, for it is so far from those which other people have played to me, and different from my own sound too.

    I don’t have enough money to buy records all the time, especially the ugly edits which are few and far between and about £50 for the best of them. So I swap music with friends, and pay tribute to bands and acts alike by visiting them at their and my preferred destination concert.

    I try to spread the good word as much as possible with regards to the music I love, sending internet links out to discogs pages as well as imdb for films and the like. With the advancements of the world wide web, I see that there isn’t such a race issue as a format of perception, and an opportunity to help each other through the times ahead with reference to one artform or another. To lubricate the lives that some of us live by paying tribute to those who made it, wanted to make it, didn’t want anything other than express themselves. And their expression in whatever abstract form is most gratefully received.

    After reading your comment Theo, I have one thing I would like to say. The ugly edits weren’t that much of a mistake. They were great. If people archive things using recording equipment, then those things are materials as much as they are thoughts.

    Best Wishes to all concerned

    Posted 11 Feb 2009 at 4:55 pm
  42. Ross wrote:

    I do however understand what is meant when referring to the utopian dream, and also understand that white people throughout history have proved themselves towards taking what wasn’t theirs. Detroit has offered a lot more originality than a lot of other musical havens, as has chicago. It seems bad for me to play detroit instead of uk electronica, I do love both of them. I suppose the best way for anyone to dj is with originality of variety, which is in itself a hard thing to achieve without really getting in there and letting the sounds flow more than just playing song after song. A tribute is what’s needed, a real consideration of the sounds mixed together, so that a feeling flows and a context is appreciated and met. Anyways..

    Posted 14 Feb 2009 at 7:38 pm
  43. Ross wrote:

    Lastly though I must say again, should anyone stumble upon this now ancient thread as they trawl the internet for techno race relations topics…

    What came first?

    Debussy, Walter Murphy, Moodymann?

    Kraftwerk or Africa Bambaata + Planet Rock?

    I love debussy.

    I love Techno too.

    I love to subvert modernity as much as possible, when given the chance.

    Posted 31 Oct 2009 at 7:04 pm
  44. Ross wrote:

    What can I say though ultimately he’s the greatest thing to happen to detroit in a long time, fair play to anyone who takes their art seriously, it’s amazing to hear some good music.

    Posted 10 Nov 2009 at 8:29 pm

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