04 Detroit 12 September - 17 September, 2011

From Motown to garage rock and techno, Detroit is the birthplace of some of the most seminal records of all time; records which stand for whole musical eras.

In tribute to this capital of innovative music, the Red Bull Music Academy has created a museum-level installation of music production and studio equipment. Over five days, true musical pioneers drive home the most respected records to come out of Detroit, with a different music field explored each day. In these studios, lectures and hands-on workshops are held with the living legends who have shaped the music landscape on a global scale. Two night time events put the theory into action, with heavy dancefloor excursions courtesy of 3 Chairs and a special Tribe Records showcase.

  • Workshop: Theo Parrish, Carl Craig

    Flat 151
    151.W Congress, Suite 600, Detroit, MI 48226

    Free Admission, Doors open 5pm

  • Workshop: Mike Banks, Juan Atkins

    Flat 151
    151.W Congress, Suite 600, Detroit, MI 48226

    Free Admission, Doors open 5pm

  • Workshops: Mike Chav, Nick Speed

    Flat 151
    151.W Congress, Suite 600, Detroit, MI 48226

    Free Admission, Doors open 5pm

  • 3 Chairs Clubnight

    TV Lounge
    2548 Grand River Avenue, Detroit Michigan 48201, 313 965-4789

    6pm till 2am, Free Admission
    Free wings & fries 6pm till 9pm

  • Workshop: Dabrye, Ed Wolfrum

    Flat 151
    151.W Congress, Suite 600, Detroit, MI 48226

    Free Admission, Doors open 5pm

  • Workshop: Marcus Belgrave & Wendell Harrison (Tribe), Amp Fiddler

    Flat 151
    151.W Congress, Suite 600, Detroit, MI 48226

    Free Admission, Doors open 5pm

  • Workshop: Wayne Kramer (MC5), Jim Diamond, Paul Riser

    Flat 151
    151.W Congress, Suite 600, Detroit, MI 48226

    Free Admission, Doors open 3pm

  • Tribe Showcase feat. Phil Ranelin, Marcus Belgrave & Wendell Harrison

    Flat 151
    151.W Congress, Suite 600, Detroit, MI 48226

    Free Admission, Doors open 3pm, Concert starts 10pm

Theo Parrish

Theo Parrish

Born in DC, raised in Chicago and currently residing in Detroit, Theo Parrish is a DJ, producer and the owner of Sound Signature Records. His offbeat 4am grooves are as much a product of his notion of ‘sound sculpture’, as the classic house, jazz and funk influences he channels, from Strata East and James Brown to Lil’ Louis and Ron Hardy. He also records with his free-wheeling jazz group The Rotating Assembly.

On Discogs >
Carl Craig

Carl Craig

One of the most prolific and successful DJs and producers of Detroit techno’s second wave, Carl Craig runs Planet E records, and has released critically acclaimed records by peers like Kevin Saunderson, Kenny Dixon Jr and Alton Miller. His own distinctive productions have come under aliases like BFC, 69, Paperclip People and The Innerzone Orchestra, steadily building his global reputation as an innovative futurist who appeals to anyone who loves dancing.

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Mike Banks

Mike Banks

Producer, DJ, and hot-rod racing obsessive, Mike Banks is head-honcho of Underground Resistance, the shadowy group of anonymous Detroit techno operatives whose cult status is legendary amongst electronic music fans. Mike prefers the shadows of the studio to the glare of the press and has rarely been photographed or interviewed, preferring to let UR’s militant press releases, ballistic artwork and gigantic futuristic discography speak for itself.

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Juan Atkins

Juan Atkins

Widely credited as one of the originators of techno music, along with partners in crime Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson, Juan Atkins is the founding member of the group Cybotron, whose cross-over hits ‘Clear’ and ‘Cosmic Cars’ brokered the new electronic sound of Detroit to the world. Juan also recorded peerless electro tracks under the alias Model 500 and helmed the legendary Metroplex record label.

On Discogs >
Dabrye

Dabrye

Dabrye is the alias of Ann Arbor native Tadd Mullinix, whose unique take on hip hop strips it to its minimal, mechanical core. Possibly best known for his tracks ‘Hyped Up Plus Tax’ and ‘Game Over’ featuring the legendary J Dilla, his music has inspired a global instrumental beat movement and set the standard for innovative productions.

On Discogs >
Amp Fiddler

Amp Fiddler

Motor City keysman Amp Fiddler began his acclaimed career playing in George Clinton’s groups Parliament and Funkadelic, and has gone on to work with such acclaimed artists as Prince, Jamiroquai, Moodymann and Corinne Bailey Rae among others. As well as his own successful solo career, he is also recognized for nurturing the young Jay Dee in the studio.

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Mike ‘Chav’ Chavarria

Mike ‘Chav’ Chavarria

Producer/engineer Mike Chav uses his ear for “The New Sh-t” to bring underground creativity into mainstream focus. Shaped by 80s hip hop and 90s alternative rock, Chav experienced a sonic epiphany on meeting Detroit’s late production guru J Dilla. Since then Chav’s interest in DIY innovation has led to collaborations with Jay Electronica, Denaun Porter, Amp Fiddler and Erykah Badu.

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Wayne Kramer

Wayne Kramer

The MC5 blazed a noisy trail from the 1960s into the 70s, but profoundly influenced rock music and culture far beyond. Lead guitarist Wayne Kramer’s ‘sheets of sound’ style gave voice to the band’s radical politics. Kramer describes his uniquely Motor City sonics as “Music that drives", and has gone on to play with artists as varied as Was (Not Was), Mudhoney, and Marianne Faithfull.

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Ed Wolfrum

Ed Wolfrum

By inventing the direct input box (aka the D.I. box) in the early 1960s, electronic wizard Ed Wolfrum enabled studio engineers to record electric guitar or bass directly into a mixing console, forever changing the sound of popular music. As chief engineer at Motown’s Studio B and the legendary United Sound Systems, Wolfrum played a key role in the alchemy behind Detroit’s worldwide musical impact.

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Marcus Belgrave

Marcus Belgrave

Jazz trumpeter and educator Marcus Belgrave represents a living treasure for the city of Detroit. He toured with Ray Charles in the late 1950s, but it was his magnum opus ‘Gemini’ which marked him as a true master. A Detroit jazz icon ever since, Belgrave has performed with giants such as Charles Mingus and McCoy Tyner, while his tireless cultivation of emerging talent speaks volumes about the community values he stands for.

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Phil Ranelin

Phil Ranelin

An avant-garde visionary, trombonist and bandleader, Phil Ranelin spearheaded an underground Detroit jazz movement in the shadows of the Motown juggernaut. With saxophonist Wendell Harrison, Ranelin co-founded the experimental jazz collective The Tribe. Their movement supported political consciousness, while celebrating the city’s musical cultures – soul, funk, jazz, latin, psych and classical – in a vibrant stew both prescient and potent.

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Wendell Harrison

Wendell Harrison

A founding father of the spiritual, afro-futurist movement in jazz, saxophonist Wendell Harrison co-ran the Tribe Records imprint, releasing classic albums like ‘A Message From The Tribe’. He’s recorded with a number of jazz legends, from Sun Ra to Grant Green, as well as playing on Motown records from Marvin Gaye and Aretha Franklin, and now performs with electronic pioneers like Carl Craig and Amp Fiddler.

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Nick Speed

Nick Speed

Nick began his career as a member of underground hip hop crew 9-2-5 Colony, with bandmates Magestik Legend, iLLite and Elzhi, and became a freelance producer for hire in the early 2000s. His discography includes production work for 50 Cent, Lloyd Banks and G Unit Records, as well as a wealth of Detroit’s homegrown talent, including Phat Kat, Proof and more recently, Danny Brown.

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3 Chairs

3 Chairs

Detroit techno’s Justice League. The legendary DJ compound consisting of key members Rick ‘The Godson’ Wilhite, Kenny Dixon Jr. aka Moodymann and Theo Parrish (and frequent cameos by Marcellus Pittman and Norma Jean Bell) reigns over mesmerizing loops and relentless grooves since 1997. All of their rare vinyl-only releases have become collector’s items in no time and milestones of Motor City’s undiluted house heritage.

On Discogs >
Jim Diamond

Jim Diamond

As the man behind Ghetto Recorders analog recording studio in downtown Detroit, and a longtime member of influential group the Dirtbombs, Mr Diamond has been a crucial force in shaping the sonics of rock in Detroit and beyond. At Ghetto Recorders, a swathe of artists including The White Stripes, Electric Six and the High Strung benefitted from his engineering and production savvy.

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Paul Riser

Paul Riser

Grammy Award-winning trombonist, composer and arranger Paul Riser lent his inimitable touch to many of Motown’s most essential recordings, including ‘I Heard It Though The Grapevine’ by Marvin Gaye and ‘Papa Was A Rollin’ Stone’ by The Temptations. One of the ‘Funk Brothers’, he was the uncredited trombonist on most of Motown’s hit records of the late ‘50s, ’60s and early ’70s. He has gone on to arrange for and work with diverse artists from Quincy Jones and the Carpenters to Patti LaBelle and arranged many of the songs on R.Kelly’s ‘Chocolate Factory’.

Machine And Soul

The Motor City’s pivotal music makers break down their favourite piece of equipment.

Korg MS20

Juan Atkins

When you made tracks, what gear were you using?

“I was using one of the first affordable Korg synthesizers, the Korg MS series, with a Roland RS-09 string and a DR-55 rhythm machine. That was the whole set up back there.”

2009 interview with Ron Slomowicz

Carl Craig

What’s the most integral part of your kit?

“Any sampler I have. The sampler is most revolutionary piece of gear designed since the modular synthesizer. You know a lot of people collect records, some collect gear, some collect cars.”

Carl Craig, as interviewed by A Man Named Omar

Akai Sampler
MC5 Live

MC5

“I never saw equipment destroyed the way they destroyed it. I mean they really did it right. No doubt about it – the best equipment destroyers in rock’n’roll history.”

Jon Landau , Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

MC5

What’s the most integral part of your kit?

“I’ve got a Gibson Thunderbird bass borrowed from Ron Asheton of The Stooges, since he had switched to guitar. Which I subsequently destroyed not long after that at the Grande Ballroom in the famous guitar bashing stunt with Wayne at the climax of the show where he wasted the flag Strat. Actually, I had broken the headstock off the bass a week earlier, when I jumped from the top of a PA stack at the end of another show. I put it back together with a screw, and it held up long enough until Wayne and I wound up and smashed them together, destroying both instruments. We’re hitting our stride by now.”

Michael Davis, bassist of MC5

Thunderbird
Dabrye

Dabrye

How do you go about constructing a song?

“Usually, I begin with a very basic idea and I work on it with instruments until I’ve got something that I think is interesting. Sometimes I experiment until I get something that sounds good and then I elaborate on the main ingredient.”

Dabrye, interview with Bleep

Dabrye

What musical set-up / equipment do you use?

“I use Technic 1200 turntables, a personal computer, a Roland tr-808, tr-909. tb-303, sh-101, mc-202, tr-606, sp-404, tr-505, tr-707, Alpha Juno 2, Boss DR-660, Yamaha CS-15, DX-7, Ensoniq ESQ-1, Realistic/Moog Concertmate, Casio RZ-1, SK-1, and whatever FX I can get my hands on.”

Dabrye, interview with Bleep

Dabrye's gear
Akai MPC2000

Kenny Dixon Jr./Moodymann

“A lot of people, after work, you go home you take a bath. A lot of people you go home you fuck your wife, a lot of people go home, you cut your grass. I go home and I fuck that motherfucking MPC all fucking night.”

Moodyman, Red Bull Music Academy 2010

Essential Tracks

Phillip Ranelin & Wendell Harrison
What We Need (A Message From The Tribe)
Listen
Dabrye feat. Jay Dee & Phat Kat
Game Over
Listen
Theo Parrish
Capritarious #7
Listen
Diana Ross
Reach Out and Touch (Somebody’s Hand)
Listen
Cybotron
Clear
Listen
MC5
Kick Out The Jams
Listen

On Red Bull Music Academy Radio

Tribe
Tribe – On The Floor!
Live at RBMA World Tour - Detroit - Pt 1
Play >
Tribe
Tribe – On The Floor!
Live at RBMA World Tour - Detroit - Pt 2
Play >
Detroit Special feat. Carl Craig & Theo Parrish
RBMA World Tour 2011
Detroit Special feat. Carl Craig & Theo Parrish
Play >
Amp Fiddler
Amp Fiddler (Muthas Of Invention, Strut, Detroit) – Headphone Highlights
Play >