PAUL VAN DYK
Submitted by Clubsguide on January 2nd 2006
Born December 16th, 1971 in Eisenhuettenstadt, East Germany, Paul grew up in communist East Berlin. Prior to Germany's reunification, he at least had an early window to the capitalist world via the cross-border airwaves.
"We were able to see Westside - TV and listen to western radio stations. We recorded the music and replayed it at our parties, because in the east we didn't have something like a club culture. In those days I listened to the radio show of Monika Dietl. I was really captivated by the music of 'The Smiths' and 'New Order'. It (the music) was very strong and emotional...
Then in 1989, as the wall finally came down, a broad Club culture sprung up throughout all of Berlin. "Mainly they played that hard Detroit - Techno. I liked this energetic spirit, but something was missing. I (was looking out) for something else."
That search would never leave him. Stemming from two crusty old turntables, the first remix tapes of his musical ideas were created. And only a bit later, in March 1991, his unique style of dance music was played for the very first time to the public at the embryonic Berlin club "Tresor".
Around this same period, Paul also started making his own original compositions. His first production "Perfect Day", put together with Cosmic Baby as "Visions of Shiva", was released in 1992. "I was pleased like a little child, holding my own very first record in my hands!,... Paul remembers. "Perfect Day" was published by the Berlin underground label 'MFS', and launched a promising career, which aimed without pause or hesitation for the top !
In 1993 Paul created the club hit of the year with his remix of Humate's "Love Stimulation". The following year, his first album "45 RPM" was recorded, while he was also regularly spinning sets at the legendary club 'E - Werk'.
Over the next few years Paul garnered further respect by remixing tracks of many renowned artists such as Inspiral Carpets, Sven Väth, Curve and New Order. This was of course until the release of his second album, "Seven Ways", which firmly established him as one of the world's truly great electronic artists.
'Seven Ways' unleashed a frenzy of national and international interviews, and many globe-roaming DJ - sets as well, as Paul was catapulted into the Top 100 - Salecharts. Even the English music media, typically protective of their own homespun DJ artists, unanimously praised the record. Readers of "DJ Magazine voted 'Seven Ways' as the Number 1 album of the year. Bellowing singles such as "Beautiful Place", "Forbidden Fruit" and "Words", featuring remixes of Salt Tank, Quattara and Curve, fully secured him a place as a major player in the British and European dancecharts.
Before the club closed, Paul became an institution at Berlin's 'E - Werk', regularly spinning new musical magic, with guest appearances by fellow superstar DJ's Nick Warren, BT, Dave Seaman and Sasha.
In 1998 his first album "45 RPM" was released in the UK, and the new remix of the single "For an Angel" attacked the worldwide dancefloors. The album buzzed for two weeks at number 1 in England and four weeks at number 1 in the German dancecharts, and also achieved major postings in the American, Australian, Dutch, Belgian and Scandinavian dancecharts.
However, Paul's core sentiments are not as a producer, to be shuttered away in some stealthy studio, but as a performing DJ very willing to be seen, and with a deep desire to have contact with his audience, whether it be 500 people or 1.5 million...
"As I began my career as a DJ I discovered that there is a really deep communication between DJ and people. I learned to observe the different vibrations, learned how to move the crowd, and how to create atmosphere." Paul remembers, "because while spinning, an interaction takes place between the people and me. I never come into a club and spin just a ready set. It is also a very new experience for me every time, and nobody knows in advance how it will end."
Now he creates that experience regularly, as resident - DJ in New York's "Twilo" club, at the acclaimed "Gatecrasher" in Sheffield, and in his hometown of Berlin.
In 1999 Paul was divorced from his former label 'MFS' and started up, together with his team, the new label "Vandit" Records. This label presents both Paul's releases, as well as other new and innovative dance/DJ artists.
In England, 'Deviant' - Records are taking care of Paul's creative output, whose brainstorm was the 1998 Triple - CD "Vorsprung Dyk Technik". Combining 33 tracks, it is the most exhaustive collection of Paul's remixes to date, containing classics like Humate's "Love Stimulation" and Joe T. Vanelli's "Playing with the Voice in Germany" as well as Binary Finary's clubhit "1998" and Paul's own chart single "For an Angel". A year after its release in Nov 1999, "Vorsprung Dyk Technik" was officially declared "Silver" with over 60,000 UK sales, a very rare feat indeed for a Triple - CD.
Today Paul's touring diary is incredibly hectic with regular globetrotting stops at major venues in London, Tel Aviv, Mexico, New York and Singapore. Between all that, Berlin is always there and waiting -- if not for the interviews and local club dates, then for looking after his own label, recording studio and radio show (not to mention his friends and family as well!).
"It isn't the success or which place I take in the salecharts that is important for me. (What's) most important are the people, the family, friends, ..and everyone, (especially) where I've changed something. I am really pleased when someone tells me: "Hey, by hearing your song something changed in my life!" Paul says, "I've never made music for being trendy or making the fat money. I make music for myself, it (the music) comes directly from my stomach, my music springs from an intense feeling. And every track has its own little story..."
We are all wishing you lots of pleasure while listening or dancing to Paul's music, and you'll definitely be hearing more from him on this website in the near future !
Just listen, enjoy and be inspired !
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