52 min

EX.714 Juan Atkins RA Exchange

    • Music

"What is it about my music that's touching other people?" One of the forefathers of techno reflects on his legacy, the state of techno music and the city of Detroit live from IMS.

Most people in nightlife are familiar with the name Juan Atkins. One of the originators of techno, he grew up in Belleville, a middle-class suburb of Detroit, and would become one of the Belleville Three alongside Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson. This first wave of Detroit techno artists was inspired by the late night emissions of radio DJ The Electrifying Mojo—a late-night presenter who famously mixed different synth music, like Krautrock and the German outfit Kraftwerk—and the writing of futurists like Alvin Toffler, who imagined a different, utopic vision of urban life and technology.

In this keynote interview recorded live at International Music Summit in Ibiza, Atkins reflects on his roots and the musical movement that's grown from his first experiments with techno in the '80s. Returning to his adolescence, he unpacks the origins of his electro collaboration Cybotron, his solo project Model 500 (coming to Houghton this year) and his label, Metroplex, which became a blueprint for a hoard of techno imprints that would emerge in its wake. Now 61, Atkins also reflects on the broader impact music has had on his life—he has given lectures on the intersection of physics, music and spirituality—as well as the remaining stones left unturned as he enters the (very much still active) sunset in his career. Listen to the episode in full.

"What is it about my music that's touching other people?" One of the forefathers of techno reflects on his legacy, the state of techno music and the city of Detroit live from IMS.

Most people in nightlife are familiar with the name Juan Atkins. One of the originators of techno, he grew up in Belleville, a middle-class suburb of Detroit, and would become one of the Belleville Three alongside Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson. This first wave of Detroit techno artists was inspired by the late night emissions of radio DJ The Electrifying Mojo—a late-night presenter who famously mixed different synth music, like Krautrock and the German outfit Kraftwerk—and the writing of futurists like Alvin Toffler, who imagined a different, utopic vision of urban life and technology.

In this keynote interview recorded live at International Music Summit in Ibiza, Atkins reflects on his roots and the musical movement that's grown from his first experiments with techno in the '80s. Returning to his adolescence, he unpacks the origins of his electro collaboration Cybotron, his solo project Model 500 (coming to Houghton this year) and his label, Metroplex, which became a blueprint for a hoard of techno imprints that would emerge in its wake. Now 61, Atkins also reflects on the broader impact music has had on his life—he has given lectures on the intersection of physics, music and spirituality—as well as the remaining stones left unturned as he enters the (very much still active) sunset in his career. Listen to the episode in full.

52 min

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