Unit 11 – Exploration of Specialist Study and Context (Mock)

Richie Hawtin


DJ, Producer, Record Label Owner

At the age of nine Richie moved to the origin of techno, Ontario which was on the other side of Detroit. Richie was introduced to the electronic music genre by his father, who was a robotics technician. His Father enjoyed listening to Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream which he showed to Richie when he was still young. Richie’s brother had a career as a visual artist and as a DJ, his music selection for very ambient.  At the age of 17 Richie started to perform as a DJ in clubs in Detroit, mainly sticking to house and techno music.

Richie along with others such as Carl Craig in the early 1990s influenced the second wave of Techno music in Detroit. He started his career performing at underground parties as a DJ, in different clubs such as Detroit’s Shelter. This is where he came into contact with his partner, John Acquaviva, together in 1990 they established the Record label “Plus 8” which went on to become very impactful in the techno scene. Richie released the tracks the he had been producing under the alias F.U.S.E, which was identified as intelligent dance music. Plus 8 went on to release tracks from different artists such as Speedy J and Kenny Larkin.


Richie has been a producer, DJ and a record label owner whilst leading the way in the underground Detroit techno scene. He mainly uses digital mixing equipment and a laptop.  Having formed a different techno sound to others, this particular sound was identified as the sound of Detroit. Being influenced by the Roland TB-303, Richie Hawtin was able to make a characteristic full and unique sound, which over time has become essential in acid house recordings. Richie had found the right sound that his future fans were looking for, in exactly the right time and place. In 1993 Richie Hawtin signed a contract with Nova Mute, which is when he had his gigantic achievement, with the project called; “Plastikman”. This new alias came with many iconic singles as “Spastik” and albums such as “EX” or “Sheet One”, resulting in touring a live show for the following decade.

Richie Hawtin launched an array of 12-inch singles with the work of Robert Hood, over a monthly basis in 1996, pioneering the minimal techno genre. This project of monthly singles worked alongside his future record label M_nus, that was focused on the same direction. Decks, EFX & 909 was a the first of three mix album’s which was released in 1999, this was so influential to technological input it created an advanced standard for this genre of music production. Richie Hawtin established M_nus Records in 1998 which is now based in Berlin, Germany and Windsor, Canada. His previous label Plus 8 stopped releasing tracks and by 2005 his new label M_nus was releasing 2 – 3 CD’s with 12 – 14 records a year.


Previous to establishing on his record label M_nus in Berlin Richie Hawtin lived in New York City for parts of 2002 / 2003, but he decided to pursue the focus on his label, by expanding the careers of other DJ producers such as; Troy Pierce, Magda, Gaiser and Hearttrob. In 2006 Richie Hawtin started a project for the opening ceremonies of the winter Olympics, by collaborating with Enzo Cosimi. This composition was named “9.20” and was inspired by Richie’s interest in pushing the limit for the audience and both of them as artists, for sounds that could have never been accomplished before.


M_nus presented the global tour called “Contakt” in 2008, different DJ producers signed to the label and also Hawtin himself, all performing on new wireless technology such as the Lemur Controller. After this success Richie revealed his new live Plastikman performance at the Mannheim festival in 2010, which was called Plastikman 1.5 which also resulted in a global tour. Richie Hawtin worked on installations a long side with Anish Kapoor, in the Grand Palais in Paris in 2011. Then starting a project called: CNTRL: Beyond EDM in 2012 aiming to help promote EDM. Together with Loco Dice and Ean Golden they toured North American Universities, holding seminars about music business, production and live performances.


In 2012 Richie Hawtin first presented ENTER. in the space club Ibiza, which was an experiment for him during the summer season with a black dot as a marketing strategy. The concept of ENTER. is made up of five rooms with unique designs which each have their own selection of electronic music. 2013 Richie Hawtin worked with his brother and they created concept pieces which where showcased in Miami at the Art Basel. In July 2015 the University of Hudderfield presented Richie with an Honorary Doctorate of Music Technology from confirming his accomplishments in music technology. This award was given to him for his unique input to the world of music technology, being his third major honor in the past year. ( Outstanding Contribution to Music award – Assn. &, London & Sale Samurai Award – Sake Samurai Assosiation, Kyoto.

List of all alias Albums:

F.U.S.E. : Dimension Intrusion, 1993

Plastikman: Sheet One, 1993

Plastikman: Recycled Plastik, 1994

Plastikman: Musik, 1994

Plastikman: Sickness (EP), 1997

Concept 1: 96:CD, 1998

Concept 1: 96:VR, 1998 (remixed by Thomas Brinkmann)

Plastikman: Consumed, 1998

Plastikman: Artifakts [bc], 1998

Plastikman: Closer, 2003

Plastikman to the power of 9: Kompilation, 2010

Plastikman: Arkives, 2011

Plastikman: EX, 2014 (UK Dance #16)

Richie Hawtin: From My Mind To Yours, 2015



Resident Advisor, (2016): „Minus presents Contakt“. Last accessed on 08. 02. 2016, http://www.residentadvisor.net/news.aspx?id=9288.

Resident Advisor, (2016): „RA: Richie Hawtin“. Last accessed on 08. 02. 2016, http://www.residentadvisor.net/dj/richiehawtin/biography.

Staff, Crack (2016): „RICHIE HAWTIN | Crack Magazine“. Crack Magazine. Last accessed on 08. 02. 2016, http://crackmagazine.net/article/music/richie-hawtin/.

Wikipedia, (2016): „12-inch single“. Last accessed on 08. 02. 2016, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/12-inch_single.

Wikipedia, (2016): „Minus (record label)“. Last accessed on 08. 02. 2016, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minus_(record_label).

Wikipedia, (2016): „Novamute Records“. Last accessed on 08. 02. 2016, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novamute_Records.

Wikipedia, (2016): „Plus 8“.Last accessed on 08. 02. 2016, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plus_8.

Wikipedia, (2016): „Richie Hawtin“. Last accessed on 08. 02. 2016, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richie_Hawtin.

Wikipedia, (2016): „Richie Hawtin“. Last accessed on 08. 02. 2016, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richie_Hawtin.


Create Digital Music, (2012): „Make Controller Layouts on an Ipad“. Last accessed on 13. 04. 2016, http://createdigitalmusic.com/2012/12/make-controller-layouts-right-on-an-ipad-new-lemur-arrives-livecontrol-2-0-soon-ios-gallery/

Dj master course, (2015): „The Three Most Famous Detroit Techno DJs“. Last accessed on 13. 04. 2016, https://www.djmastercourse.com/famous-detroit-techno-djs/

Edm Sauce, (2013):„Richie Hawtin at Marquee Las Vegas October 26, 2013 [Review]“. Last accessed on 13.04.2016, http://www.edmsauce.com/2013/11/08/richie-hawtin-marquee-las-vegas-october-26-2013-review/

Juno, (2016): „Plastikman Splipmaps“. Last accessed on 13. 04. 2016, http://www.juno.co.uk/products/plastikman-slipmats-black-with-white-plastikman-logo/210898-01/

News Source Dot Com, (2013): „EDM producers djs blog“. Last accessed on 13. 04. 2016, http://newssourcedotcom.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/newssourcedotco-m-edm-producers-djs_23.html


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s