Carl Craig

Carl Craig

Barrio Loco

Carl Craig is described as a creative visionary, an electronic music icon, an esteemed Grammy-nominated composer, a world-class DJ and an ambassador for his native Detroit. Yet the common thread that runs through Craig’s broad musical canon and creative projects is a resounding fascination with futurism. The prolific producer has cultivated a unique path as an artist, entrepreneur and civic leader, guided by his tendency toward forward thinking.

“My livelihood is making music that I can perform, whether I’m doing orchestral production or modular strangeness or generating club music. I don’t restrict myself,” said Craig. “I defined myself by being who I am. The ultimate self respect is when you say you’re going to do something and you go and do it to the best of your ability.”

Craig released his first track in 1989 on a Virgin UK compilation album, two singles followed on labels run by his first collaborator, Derrick May. After a series of ambitious releases for his co-owned Retroactive imprint, in 1991 Craig launched his record label Planet E, with the groundbreaking EP “4 Jazz Funk Classics”, under his alias 69. Planet E turned 20 in 2011 and Craig celebrated the label’s history by taking Planet-E and its artists and collaborators on a world tour for the first time ever. As well as this, Planet E invited friends of the label – including Luciano, Kirk Degiorgio, Loco Dice and more - to pick their favorite Planet E track to remix and re-release. Reflecting a year that was packed with events and releases, Craig readily admits that when he started the label he was hoping “it would last forever.” He cites artistic freedom as the highlight of running the label and adds, “It was never a struggle for the label to be an outlet for my or other people's music. It was always a struggle to stay in business, actually a war to stay in business.” In 2012, Craig took his 69 alias on a live tour; ‘69 Live’, headlined festivals and clubs around the world, fusing masks, darkness and the music of 69. In the same year he was also voted in the top DJs that rule the Earth in Rolling Stone and appeared on the cover of the world’s biggest electronic music magazine, Mixmag. In 2013, he released a 3-CD album on Ministry of Sound, entitled ‘Masterpiece’. The album includes one disc of music Carl was inspired by, one disc of current selections and one special disk of new music, entitled ‘Meditation’, a modular jam of Moroderesque compositions, inspired by David Lynch’s meditation techniques (Lynch, a great advocator of Transcendental Meditation), and an electronic tribute to his beloved city of Detroit.

Looking back now to Craig's early releases from 1989-1992, one can see how much the wild variety found in his early music set the groundwork for his diverse career. He's fortunate to serve as an inspiration and influence to countless artists in the underground electronic music scene, as well as crossover acts like Underworld, Hot Chip and LCD Soundsystem. His 1992 Innerzone Orchestra cut “Bug in the Bassbin” was credited as the spark that inspired the evolution of drum‘n’bass. In typical Craig fashion, “Bug...” continued to develop, morphing into a live jazz composition in 1996. In turn, those experiments laid the ground for Craig to incorporate Jazz elements onto his 1999 I.O. album “Programmed.” Then in the 00's Craig explored jazz further still as producer on the albums “The Detroit Experiment” and “Rebirth” (2009) for legendary Detroit Jazz collective, Tribe. This is but one example of Craig's continually evolving exploration of sound. Craig’s prolific nature is reflected in the many recording projects he has used throughout his career including 69, BFC, C2, Innerzone Orchestra, No Boundaries, Psyche, Paperclip People and Tres Demented. This rotating cast of aliases has enabled him to continually explore new directions through a long succession of full length albums, mix CDs and singles including “Throw” (1994), “Landcruising” (1995), “The Secret Tapes of Dr Eich” (1996), “More Songs About Food and Revolutionary Art” (1997), “Programmed” (1999), “The Detroit Experiment” (2002), “The Workout” (2002), “Just Another Day” (2004), “Fabric 25” (2005), “The Album Formerly Known As” (2005), “Paris Live” (2007), “Sessions” (2008), “Recomposed” (with Moritz Von Oswald) (2008), “The Legendary Adventures of a Filter King” (2009), “Modular Pursuits” (2010) and “Last Decade” (2012).

Craig’s interest in collaboration continually grows. For ‘Versus’, one of his boldest endeavors to date, Craig combines techno and classical music, opening himself up to working in a new format by collaborating with orchestrator / pianist Francesco Tristano, French orchestra Les Siècles, conductor Francois Xavier Roth and Moritz Von Oswald. Inspired by well-received performances in large concerts halls in Paris, Milan and Germany, Craig started the process of developing the project into an album. He also performs as a Trio alongside Von Oswald and Tristano. His occasional appearances with the electronic collective jam band Narod Niki, alongside Villalobos, Luciano, Richie Hawtin, Zip and others, have led to him appearing in part live / part DJ gigs with Luciano. Additionally he’s taken to occasionally bringing keyboardists like Mike Banks (UR), Amp Fiddler and Tristano into the DJ booth with him for special one-off gigs. These mixed performances add some variety in a non-stop DJ schedule that finds him spinning at top clubs worldwide. Craig acknowledges, “Touring has always been the most important aspect of the music industry for artists. There will always be that desire for human interaction.” Let’s also mention that he has recently performed live soundtracks to films, first in Amsterdam then in New York, where he improvised live to an Andy Warhol film at Unsound Festival. The fact is unpredictability is the only predictable thing about Craig and his music.

Outside of his Planet E recordings, Craig also continues to be one of the most sought-after remixers in the world. He has produced a seemingly never-ending list of remixes that now extends over 100 cuts, including mixes for the likes of LCD Soundsystem, Hot Chip, Junior Boys (Grammy Award nominated), Gavin Russom & Delia Gonzalez, Theo Parrish, Tori Amos, Can, Goldfrapp, Friendly Fires, Tom Trago, Slam, Caribou, Tiga, Unkle, Henrik Schwarz, Life & Death, tINI, Yello and others. He was nominated for a Grammy in 2008 for his mix of the Junior Boys “Like a Child.” “It’s been proven that the remix is a valid art form,” Craig said. “When I take on a project, the ultimate goal is that it becomes my record. In many cases I’m actually recomposing the track and the time that I spend reflects how personal it becomes.” Fortunately there is no shortage of artists looking for that Carl Craig touch, so rest assured you'll hear Craig reconfiguring many of your favorite artists for years to come.

In the same way that he likes to make tracks he's remixing his own, Craig’s commitment to his home in Detroit is also something very personal. After launching a festival to rival that of any in Europe with the Detroit Electronic Music Festival in 2000 (now entitled Movement, which today he still has a strong role in). This commitment to Detroit music also extends to how his Planet E family of labels is run. Not only has it given a home to a wide range of Detroit-based artists including Francesco Mora Catlett, Naomi Daniel, Flexitone, Jason Hogans, Kenny Larkin, Monty Luke, Ezana Harris, Moodyman, Mike Agent X, Terrence Parker, Oliverwho Factory, Recloose, Reference, Kevin Saunderson, Big Tone, Tribe, Urban Tribe, and Chaz Vincent, it has also been serving as a distributor for Detroit imprints including Derrick May's Transmat and Stacey Pullen's Black Flag. “The reality of the business is that you have to change. That’s a very difficult process, especially as an independent. I made a conscious decision a few years ago to invest in what I do. It’s turning it around and putting it into the studio and the label for my music to develop. We’re fighters around here. We fight to find new ways of selling. We do manufacture vinyl and there are people who want it. We’re fighting to keep it alive. Fighting for music that we have a vision for,” Craig says about Detroit. “My commitment to the city is like a commitment to your family. I’ve been here all my life and I’ve seen great things happen elsewhere, why not be involved in making my home great?”

In 2014, Carl Craig began a new event concept ‘Detroit Love’, designed to bring together and support the sounds of Detroit and take a little of the techno brotherhood to clubs and festivals the world over. “My love for Detroit is my inspiration, my inspiration is ‘Detroit Love”, says Craig. Detroit Love was launched at ADE 2014, in the underground recesses of Amsterdam’s North Sea Jazz club. Craig invited Detroit natives Recloose, Moodymann - who played a set encompassing disco, soul, house and hip-hop, and Mad Mike Banks to play keys over Carl Craig’s Moog infused 4-cd-deck closing set, which included live editing, sampling, scratching and looping of soundscapes ranging from ambient textures to masterful techno. A Detroit focused line-up, showcasing only a few of the sublime talent that Detroit has to offer, the launch was a special and unforgettable night for those who attended. At year’s end Craig remixed Caribou’s ‘Your Love Will Set You Free’ – which became an instant classic. “Carl Craig is a peerless remixer, I’ve dreamed of having him remix one of my tracks for ages. He was one of the first people to publicly mention how much he liked ‘Swim’ when it was released and we’ve been in touch since then. Before I’d gathered up the courage to ask him to remix a track on this album he got in touch and suggested it himself. The result is superlative and speaks for itself.” – said Dan Snaith. Pete Tong made ‘Your Love Will Set You Free’ his first Essential New Tune of 2015, setting precedent for the year to come, with the remix gaining over 500,000 listens on soundcloud in only a few weeks.

When Craig explains his philosophy, his wry sense of humor seeps into his explanations of far-reaching concepts that merge worlds together. “I have a very special career. When I feel that I’m tired of going on the road I can go in the studio. When I’m tired of concentrating on the studio I can go on the road. I can work with concert pianists, jazz musicians or rock guys. Very few people have that range of interests. Very few people juggle a career that they choose specifically.” No one else can pull it all together quite like Carl Craig.

Artists

  1. 47 Soul

  2. 6Foot7

  3. AAA BADBOY VS DUB BOY (SOCA SET)

  4. AARDVARK

  5. Ace Ventura

  6. Agbeko

  7. Agent Sasco & Dub Akom Band

  8. Agressor Bunx

  9. AJ Tracey

  10. Alabama 3

  11. Alfresco Disco

  12. Alice Francis

  13. Almatic

  14. Alpha Portal

  15. Altern 8 LIVE

  16. Amy Becker

  17. ANJELO DISONS

  18. Aphrodite

  19. AQUASKY

  20. ARCON

  21. Aries

  22. Ariwo

  23. Arrested Development

  24. ASIAN HAWK

  25. Astrix

  26. Atterkop

  27. Baby Queens

  28. Back to the Planet

  29. BAR STOOL PREACHERS

  30. BARBARIX

  31. Bare Knuckle Parade

  32. Beans On Toast

  33. BEARDY WEARDY

  34. Beating Heart

  35. BEN UFO

  36. Benjamin Zephaniah & the Revolutionary Minds

  37. Berg

  38. Big Swing Sound feat. Hypeman Sage

  39. Big Youth + U-Roy

  40. BILLAIN

  41. Black Sun Empire

  42. Black Water County

  43. Blaggers ITA

  44. Blend Mishkin feat. Peppery

  45. BLOCK DODGER

  46. Bobbie Johnson

  47. BODDIKA

  48. BOOKA SHADE

  49. Boys Noize

  50. BRAINCELL

  51. BRAINIAC

  52. Brinsley Forde, Founder of Aswad

  53. BROKEN NOTE

  54. C@ In The H@

  55. Captain Accident

  56. Captain Cactus & The Screaming Harlots

  57. Captain Hotknives

  58. Carl Craig

  59. CASPA

  60. Casual Nausea

  61. CATJAM

  62. CaveMouth

  63. Chainska Brassika

  64. CHALI 2NA and KRAFTY KUTS

  65. Champion

  66. Channel One

  67. Chavo

  68. Cherry Bandora

  69. China Shop Bull

  70. Chris Liberator and Sterling Moss LIVE

  71. Chris Wood

  72. Colonel Mustard & The Dijon 5

  73. Conners & The Con Men

  74. Coppa

  75. COUNTING COINS

  76. Crash Nomada

  77. Cut Capers

  78. Cypress Hill

  79. D-Dots

  80. Danny Wav

  81. Dat Brass

  82. Dave Clarke

  83. Dawn Penn

  84. Dazee

  85. DEAD PLAYERS

  86. DEADBEAT UK

  87. Deathmachine

  88. Deekline

  89. Delhi Sultanate

  90. Destructive Tendencies

  91. Dirty Diesel Outlaw Orchestra

  92. DISMANTLE

  93. Disorda

  94. DJ DAPPER DAN

  95. DJ DIE

  96. DJ Format

  97. DJ Kobayashi

  98. DJ POD

  99. DJ Storm

  100. DJ Vadim

  101. Dolphin

  102. Donae’o

  103. Dr Syntax and Pete Cannon

  104. Dry White Bones

  105. Dub FX

  106. Dub Phizix & Strategy

  107. DUB TREES (dj set)

  108. DUSKY

  109. Dutty Moonshine

  110. E-COLI

  111. Earl Gateshead

  112. Earthling

  113. Easy Stride Band

  114. EAT STATIC

  115. Ed Solo

  116. Ed West & Inja

  117. EEON

  118. Efa Supertramp

  119. El Gadzé

  120. Elder Island

  121. Electrikal Sound System

  122. Elijah & Skilliam

  123. Eliza Carthy and The Wayward Band

  124. EMILY DUST

  125. Empatee Du Weiss

  126. Emperor

  127. Erik & The Worldly Savages

  128. ESCAPE

  129. Escape Roots and Tom Spirals

  130. Eskorzo

  131. EURYTHMY

  132. Eva Lazarus

  133. E.V.P

  134. Extra Medium

  135. F000l

  136. Fabio and Grooverider

  137. Faintest Idea

  138. Faith i Branko

  139. Fandjango

  140. Ferocious Dog

  141. FILTERHEADS

  142. First World Pros

  143. FISH

  144. FLAVA D

  145. Floxytek

  146. Forbidden Society

  147. forest of fools

  148. Fourward

  149. Fox (Swing Tings Takeover)

  150. Frank Turner

  151. Freestylers

  152. Friction

  153. Fungus Funk

  154. Future Frequency

  155. Galak Spiritual

  156. GANCHER AND RUIN

  157. GARDNA

  158. Gaudi

  159. Gentleman's Dub Club

  160. GEO

  161. Gilles Peterson (DJ Set) + Earl Zinger

  162. GoGo Penguin

  163. Gypsy Hill

  164. Gypsy Unit

  165. Hallouminati

  166. Heartless Crew

  167. Hedge Gods

  168. Hellfish

  169. Hepcat

  170. Heymoonshaker

  171. Hiphoppapotamus

  172. Hodmadoddery

  173. Hoffmaestro

  174. Holly Holden y Su Banda

  175. Holy Goof

  176. Holy Moly & The Crackers

  177. Hoopy Frood

  178. HORSE MEAT DISCO

  179. HOUSE GOSPEL CHOIR

  180. Hujaboy

  181. HYBRID THEORY

  182. Hylu feat. Zico, A.P Grimshaw & Kosher (Unit 137)

  183. HYPNOCOUSTICS

  184. IAMDBB

  185. Iba Mahr & Harar Band

  186. Icicle

  187. Imperial Leisure

  188. Imprints

  189. Indian Man

  190. Jade

  191. Jago

  192. Jah9 & The Dub Treatment

  193. Jake and the Jellyfish

  194. Jake Martin

  195. James Ray & The Black Hearted Riders

  196. Jamie Berry

  197. JAMIE RODIGAN

  198. Jaye and Foe

  199. Jesse Royal

  200. JIM JONES & THE RIGHTEOUS MIND

  201. JOURNEY

  202. JOY ORBISON

  203. Jungle Brown

  204. Junior Bill

  205. Junior Jungle + Breakdancing Gorillas

  206. Juno Reactor

  207. Jus Now

  208. Just Say Nay

  209. Kaligola Disco Bazar

  210. Kelvin 373

  211. KENTA HAYASHI a.k.a Loop Pedal Ninja

  212. Kid Carpet

  213. Kíla

  214. killbox

  215. K.I.M

  216. KING PRAWN

  217. King Sub

  218. KINGS OF THE ROLLERS

  219. Kioko

  220. Kit Hawes and Aaron Catlow

  221. Kool Tur

  222. KOXBOX

  223. Kumbia Queers

  224. L33

  225. La Inedita

  226. L.A. Salami

  227. Lakuta

  228. Last Edition

  229. Layfullstop

  230. Lazy Habits

  231. Lead Shot Hazard

  232. Legendary Shack Shakers

  233. LEMON TREE

  234. Leo Samson

  235. Liam Bailey

  236. LIMEWAX

  237. LION UNIT (Lionpulse + Unit 137)

  238. Lionpulse

  239. LMZG (Lamuzgueule)

  240. Lo-Fi Funky Space Quest

  241. Los Albertos

  242. Los Dueños

  243. Los Fastidios

  244. Loyle Carner

  245. Lucas

  246. Lutan Fyah

  247. Mad Apple Circus

  248. Mad Dog Mcrea

  249. MAGIK

  250. Maid of Ace

  251. Mama Jerk and the Ladyfingers

  252. MANDIDEXTROUS

  253. MANTISMASH

  254. MARA LEFAY

  255. Mark EG

  256. Maroon Town

  257. MATERIA

  258. Matilda's Scoundrels

  259. MATT JAM LAMONT

  260. Matt Montez Duo

  261. MATT:SCRATCH

  262. MATTYCORE

  263. Mbongwana Star

  264. MEFJUS

  265. M.I.A.

  266. Mick O'Toole

  267. Mike Love

  268. MINDFOLD

  269. Mista Trick

  270. MONKI

  271. MOULDY SOUL

  272. Mr Tea & The Minions

  273. Mr Vegas

  274. MY BAD SISTER

  275. My Nu Leng & Dread MC

  276. Nanoplex

  277. Nattali Rize

  278. Natty Bo & The Top Cats

  279. NATZAN

  280. Navigator

  281. Nérija

  282. NEUTRON

  283. New Daze

  284. New Town Kings

  285. NICKY BLACKMARKET

  286. NIMBUS

  287. NIMI

  288. Noble Jacks

  289. Nomade Orquestra

  290. OCCULAR

  291. Ocean Wisdom

  292. OPTIV & BTK

  293. OTT

  294. OZRICS LIVE PA

  295. Paradox

  296. Pareidolia

  297. PARLY B

  298. Petrol Girls

  299. Phace

  300. Phat Sam

  301. Phosphenes

  302. PIEMAN

  303. PITCH BLACK

  304. Pizzatramp

  305. PLASMOTEK

  306. Poor Old Dogs

  307. Portico Quartet

  308. PRO-GRAM

  309. Protoje

  310. PSYCHOSONIC

  311. QUANTA

  312. R-ZAC

  313. Raging Fyah

  314. RAMA

  315. Randall

  316. Ras Kwame

  317. RAY KEITH

  318. Real Roots & Ramon Judah

  319. REALITY GRID

  320. Redlight

  321. Reel Big Fish

  322. Reno Divorce

  323. Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band

  324. Rockwell

  325. RONIN

  326. Runkus & The Old Skool Band

  327. Rusko

  328. Rusty Shackles

  329. Sam & The Womp

  330. Sasha Steppa

  331. Schlachthofbronx

  332. Sea Bass Kid

  333. Selby & the Dharma Blitz

  334. Shanty

  335. Sheelanagig

  336. Shootin the Crow

  337. Shumba Youth

  338. Shy FX

  339. SILAS NEPTUNE

  340. Sinai Sound

  341. SK Shlomo

  342. SKA’N’SKA

  343. Skata Tones

  344. Skindred

  345. Skitz

  346. SLACKBABA

  347. Slightly Stoopid

  348. Smerins Anti Social Club

  349. Smith & The Honey Badgers

  350. Smokey Joe & The Kid feat. Mystro

  351. Solana

  352. solardo

  353. Solid Gone

  354. Solo Banton & Horseman with The Upper Cut Band

  355. Solomento

  356. SONIC SPECIES

  357. SONIC WAVE CONTROL

  358. Sonido Vegetal

  359. Sons Of Kemet

  360. Soom T

  361. Sounds Of Harlowe

  362. Soweto Kinch

  363. SP23 SUNDAY Takeover

  364. Spectrasoul

  365. SPINDRIFT

  366. S.P.Y.

  367. Stagga & Magugu

  368. STAR.ONE

  369. Steamchicken

  370. Stick Figure

  371. Stillhouse

  372. Sublime With Rome

  373. Sugar Hill Gang with Grandmaster Mele Mel and Scorpio's Furious 5

  374. Suns Of Dub

  375. Surfin Birds

  376. SUTEKH

  377. Swindle

  378. Swing Patrol - Dance Classes

  379. Swing Ting Label Showcase

  380. T-MENACE

  381. Tapioka

  382. Technimatic

  383. The Allergies

  384. The Balkan Wanderers

  385. The Bonner Brothers

  386. The Boot Hill All Stars

  387. The Breath

  388. The Brewer's Daughter

  389. The Comet Is Coming

  390. The C**ty Bumpkins

  391. The Din

  392. The Discount Orchestra

  393. The DJ Producer LIVE

  394. The Downsetters

  395. The Dreadnoughts

  396. The Dualers

  397. The Eskies

  398. The Filaments

  399. The Folkestra

  400. The Furrow Collective

  401. The Generators

  402. The Heatwave

  403. The Hempolics (PA Set)

  404. The Inexplicables

  405. The Infinite Collective

  406. The JB Conspiracy

  407. The King Solomon Band

  408. The Mighty John Street Ska Orchestra

  409. The Nanofish Dippers

  410. The Original Blues Brothers Band

  411. THE PLANET SMASHERS

  412. The Prototypes

  413. THE SICKEST SQUAD

  414. The Ska Vengers

  415. The Specials

  416. The Speed Freak

  417. The Tribe

  418. The Ufoslavians

  419. The Whiskey Rebellion

  420. The Wooden Men

  421. The Wurzels

  422. They Say Jump

  423. Thrasher

  424. Toddla T

  425. Toots & the Maytals

  426. Town Of Cats

  427. TQD

  428. Trashtucada

  429. Tree House Fire

  430. TUN UP!

  431. Turner Brothers

  432. UKAUKA

  433. Uncle Dugs

  434. United Vibrations

  435. Unknown Era

  436. Upbeat Sneakers

  437. Urban Lions

  438. Utah Saints

  439. VANDAL

  440. Vibe Tribe

  441. VOLATILE CYCLE

  442. Wax Tailor

  443. WICKI

  444. Will Wood

  445. WOLF TECH

  446. WONK UNIT

  447. Xtrah

  448. YUSUFLA

  449. ZEN DUB

  450. Ziggy Marley