Theo Parrish was born in Washington, DC in 1972 and raised in Chicago, IL where his passion for music developed. Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder, Jimi Hendrix, Nina Simone, Bob Marley and his uncle, jazz musician Dexter Sims, all influenced Theo's early musical life. Parrish began spinning and producing tracks in 1986 at the age of thirteen. In 1994, he received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from KCAI with a concentration of Sound Sculpture, a form of orchestration using live generating devices. The same year Parrish moved to Detroit where he has lived ever since and become a pillar of the citys vibrant underground music scene. Producing music and delivering unique and dynamic DJ sets in venues throughout the world Parrish has gained attention and respect of DJs, producers, listeners and dancers alike.
It seems though Theo has become frustrated within the industry that he loves most. In a recent interview by Moodmat, where he was presented with a question about racism within the music industry and particularly in dance, his answer unleached a build up of anger that he has obvioulsy been bottling up.
"Id say this has been going on so long, its expected to eventually happen in every known musical discipline, but that doesn’t make it less of a crime, or less irritating... The music industry , like most huge industries, is owned by white men. Black men and women(musicians) tend to provide the labor(talent) that makes the product(songs). This isn’t a mystery and nor is it shocking since everyone white, black and otherwise living in the western world lives their respective lives with slavery as a backdrop to everything they do... As for commercial dance music: we’re not allowed. White skinny dudes from the uk or france are preferred(Jamiroquai/Moby), but generally an underground dance artist has to do commercial dance numbers for us to care.(Goldie/Carl Cox) Underground dance music, which is not controlled by the industry directly, is where we exist, but also have a lot of control, because to get music out we have to start our own labels usually."
Well it seems old Theo has got a lot to say about the subject, check out the whole interview (http://www.moodmat.com/?p=977) if you can, it's a kracker, and congrats to Moodmat for asking such a provactive question. Slightly reminds me of Lauren Hills rant a while back.
If you want to see Theo is action, he is in London at the moment, and will be playing at the 3rd San Miguel Hidden Depths event next Thursday 31st July. Register at http://www.sanmiguel.co.uk/ to win tickets. Hopefully Theo will turn some of that rage into a positive, and bless us with a set to remember. Let's hope!
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