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DJ Eddie "Flashin'" Fowlkes
Related: Detroit techno - American music
God Father and Originator of Techno SoulIn September of 1977, amidst the thick fog, flashing lights, and crowded dance floor of the underground Park Ave. Club, fourteen-year-old Eddie Fowlkes undergoes a magnificent epiphany. While watching Darryl Shannon, he is hypnotized by the stream of seamless beats leading him to uncover a deeper understanding of music’s power to affect people.He immediately acquires a mixer for Christmas and begins crafting the skills that soon reflect his impressive technical abilities. By drawing on various jazz and funk influences, and the Motown sound, Eddie further develops the creative and artistic aspects of his musical talents. And although still only in high school, his DJ sets are already entertaining and impressing his peers. While away at college in 1981, Eddie spins at countless campus parties (at WMU, EMU , and U of M). Eddie’s frequent visits to the Warehouse, (Chicago’s famous house club) led him to meet Frankie Knuckles who used sound effects, reel to reels, and three turntables.Returning home from college, to Detroit in 1983, Eddie is invited to be a member of the Deep Space mixing club with old friend Derrick May. Here, his innovative ideas and consistently flawless sets render his name synonymous with the word ‘quality’ in a town where everyone wants to be a DJ.
On one historic occasion, the Deep Space crew organizes an event where they add a massive sound system and a Roland drum machine to their usual setup. In the dramatic moment where the records stop and the 808 takes over, the crowd goes wild and Eddie awakens to a second divine revelation. He realizes that not only is he destined to mix records but also to produce them. That revelation led to Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson following suit to produce records.Thanks to his early contributions as one of the Techno originators in Detroit’s dance scene during the mid 80’s, Eddie ‘Flashin’ Fowlkes directly paves the way for other now legendary Techno artists.He also single-handedly establishes a new genre of dance music, ‘Techno-Soul’, by combining deep, soulful house sounds with the more digital, electronic elements of his own hometown.Eddie’s first track in 1986, “Goodbye Kiss” [METROPLEX], is an instant classic throughout his community. Worldwide attention quickly follows with 1987’s “Time to Express” (a major component of The Techno Sound of Detroit [VIRGIN]) and 1988’s “Standing in the Rain” [KMS] which send him touring all over Europe. For the next five years, Eddie creates some brilliant tracks for his label and other labels like LOGIC, CREATION, PLAY IT AGAIN, SAM, and TRESSOR (where he produced the 3MB projects in 1992 and 1993). The release of “Deep Pit” [SONY Germany] in 1998 and “Instant Replay” [AZULI] in 1999 further demonstrate the true genius of this DJ/Producer with over twenty years experience who is recognized as an undeniable founder of the techno movement.
The broadening scope of electronic music as an integral component of 21st century life, is due in part to the uncompromising efforts of Detroit techno originators like Eddie Fowlkes. Their inventive visions not only help to initiate other styles of popular electronica, such as jungle and progressive house/tech house, but also to catapult dance/street music into a multi-million dollar industry. Although the spiritually-charged foundations of this movement are always under the threat of corruption by auspicious promoters, DJs, and producers, Eddie remains constantly rooted by his genuine love for the music, which you can hear on his label CityBoy Recordings. --http://www.submerge.com/bookings_premier/eddieflashin.htm
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