Stylistic origins: Electro, Funk, Disco, Synthpop, R&B
Cultural origins: 1980s, New York, Chicago, United Kingdom
Typical instruments: Synthesizer - Drum machine - Sequencer - Keyboard - Sampler
Mainstream popularity: Large, especially late 1980s and early 1990s United Kingdom
Derivative forms: Rave - Nu jazz - Madchester
The Detroit Connection: early 1980s - late 1980s

A form of music was forming at the same time in Detroit, what became known as "Detroit Techno". Music heavily influenced by European Electronica (Kraftwerk, Art of Noise), early b-boy Hip Hop (Man Parrish, Soul Sonic Force) and Italo Disco (Doctor's Cat, Ris, Klein M.B.O.) this music was pioneered by Juan Atkins, Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson. The first group of songs to be rotated heavy in Chicago House music circles were the 1985's releases of "NO UFO's" by Juan Atkin's group Model 500 on Metroplex Records, Let's Go by Trans X-Ray (Derrick "MAYDAY" May") and "Groovin' without a Doubt" by Inner City (Kevin Saunderson) on KMS Records.

Juan Atkins on his Label Metroplex Records followed the release of "NO UFO's" with 1986's "FUTURE", 1988's the "Sound of Stero / Off to Battle" and 1989's "The Chase".

KMS Followed with releases in 1986 of Blake Baxter's "When we Used to Play / Work your Body", 1987's "Bounce Your Body to the Box" and "Force Field", 1988's "Wiggin" by MAYDAY, "The Sound / How to Play our Music" and “the Goove that Won't Stop” and a remix of "Grooving Without a Doubt". In 1988 as House music began to go more commercial, Kevin Saunderson’s group with Paris Gray released the 1988 hits "Big Fun" and "Good Life" which eventually were picked up by Virgin Records. Each EP / 12 inch single sported remixes by Mike "Hitman" Wilson and Steve "Silk" Hurley of Chicago and Derrick "Mayday" May and Juan Atkins of Detroit. In 1989 KMS had another hit release of "Rock to the Beat" which was a hit overseas and in Chicago

Derrick "Mayday" May had a style that was similar to Chicago native Larry Heard (Mr. Fingers), but soon became distinct and unique and was received well in Chicago, with releases on his Transmat Label, between 1986-1989 Transmat released hits like "Nude Photo", "It is What it is" and "Beyond the Dance" by Rythim is Rythim, "The Groove" by Suburban Knights, and "Illusion" by R-Tyme. The biggest hit and most influential in the House Music scene was Rythim is Rythim's "Strings of Life" which became a cult classic in dance music clubs internationally. Derrick May also recorded with Kool Kat "Nude Photo 88" with the cult classic "Sinister".

Though Detroit Techno is a music form in its own right and part of the "Electronic" / "Techno" worldwide music, it and its pioneers were also instrumental in the forwarding of House Music internationally and especially in the United Kingdom.


Copyright 2024 All rights reserved.
Unauthorized duplication in part or whole strictly prohibited by international copyright law.