Richie Hawtin Uses His CNTRL: Beyond EDM Tour to Educate Your Ass, Then Make it Shake

Courtesy of Laura Deschner
Richie Hawtin and Loco Dice

Richard "Richie" Hawtin has been a pioneer in electronic music for over 20 years, originating the Detroit techno sound here in America. This English/Canadian artist has played a pivotal role in the rise of electronic music all over the world while mastering the art of the technology that is used to make this kind of music. As one of the most respected and in demand artist of his kind he has participated in Insomniac's EDMbiz Conference in Las Vegas earlier this year and just finished his own 17-stop CNTRL: Beyond EDM Tour. We talked to Hawtin about his plans to help America discover and showcase electronic and techno(logy) based music across North American college campuses.

OC Weekly (Alejandra Loera): Has having your own stages at Electric Daisy Carnival featuring PLASTIKMAN live and your own Richie Hawtin Presents ENTER stage at Escape from Wonderland influenced you to do this CNTRL tour across North America?

Richie Hawtin: I think the whole Insomniac thing started off with playing different music and catering to a different crowd and what they are proving right now is that they want to expand the sound and bring lots of diversity. I think the main important point for me in electronic music is that everybody gets to hear all the different types. The way I feel right now is there are hundreds of thousands of new electronic music fans who are getting into this music and perhaps only know a small little part of it. Our CNTRL Tour is meant to widen their musical spectrum. It's not to say what we do is better, or what we do is worse. The idea that electronic music is getting bigger and bigger in America is an incredible force. We just want to see the music continue to evolve and people to continue to get into electronic music on a very deep level.

See Also:
*The American Music Awards Celebrates New EDM Category
*Sonar Festival Brings EDM Insanity From Spain to the States
*Top Five Best and Worst Parts of Escape From Wonderland - NOS Events Center - October 27,2012

What did the CNTRL: Beyond EDM Tour encompass? We understand you did lectures as well as play shows for young EDM fans, what kinds of things did you school these kids on?

We had a number of artists like myself, Loco Dice, Ean Golden, Kevin Saunderson, Seth Troxler, Gaiser and lots of different special guests join us. We did lectures in the day at the colleges where students and young electronic music fans could come and hear about producing music, how to DJ and become inspired. It worked on so many different levels. I've been involved in electronic music 20 plus years, so I think it's partly my responsibility to continue to educate. What I mean by education is just playing great music and talking about music that inspires people to dig deeper into this genre. That's the kind of education we tried to achieve on the CNTRL Tour.

Does the CNTRL Tour have any plans to hit the West Coast anytime soon?

Right now we did 17 dates on the east coast but we're already having emails, calls and faxes from fans and companies from the west coast who want us to come over here. We would love to do that and make it happen, maybe in May of next year. It won't be this year. My mission [for CNTRL] is to just keep continuing traveling around the world around North America, spreading the word about what we do and kind of what I believe electronic music can be and should be. I'm sure we will find our way back to the west coast.

So what do you think electronic music can be and should be?

Electronic music should be a music that continually pushes forward. It continues to innovate because electronic music is very much tied to the technology that is used to create it. Technology as we know with iPhones and the internet has everybody waiting for the next big thing from Apple or whomever. There's always something new and because that newness in technology is tied to the music, the music is always fresh, exciting and new. That's what you should expect from electronic music. This is what I think is happening in America right now -- a lot of what's very popular is starting to sound very formulated. Very much like everyone sounding the same. That doesn't mean electronic music is boring. It just means you need to find another angle into electronic music. The whole spectrum is incredibly vibrant.

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I hope Insomniac keeps that trend of bringing some great diverse tech talent from all over the world to their tech stages at all future events!

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