Saluting Scott Hardkiss

Posted by Billyjam, April 2, 2013 11:49am | Post a Comment

God Within (aka Scott Hardkiss) "Raincry" (1993)

Since the sad news of the premature passing of DJ/producer/remixer Scott Hardkiss surfaced I have been meaning to post an Amoeblog tribute to this extremely talented man who was so closely associated with the early 90's Bay Area rave scene. Scott Hardkiss (born Scott Friedel), whose sudden death last week shocked the global dance music community, was only 43 years of age and while the exact nature of his death are not yet known many Facebook postings by those who knew him indicated that he had suffered a brain aneurism. What is known is that two years ago Scott underwent serious eye transplant surgery to restore vision in his left eye, which had gone blind from a degenerative disease known as Keratoconus, but the artist had reported how the vision in his new eye was worsening and was causing him problems over the past year.

As one-third of Hardkiss (aka the Hardkiss Brothers along with non-siblings Gavin Hardkiss and Robbie Hardkiss) Scott was instrumental in helping to pioneer the U.S. rave scene via memorable informal rave parties and pioneering productions and remixes that fused techno and house, with psychedelic and breakbeats and other genres. Scott's introduction to rave culture and music began when he and Gavin attended the UK's famed Glastonbury Music Festival in 1990 and were exposed to acid house. Soonafter back in the States they set up their base out West in San Francisco where, in addition to throwing underground parties, in early nineties released their debut album, Magical Sounds of the Underground. Later in 1994 they would set up their own Sunburn label to release other artists music as well as some of their own. Collectively and individually they recorded and remixed a lot of music and in the late nineties Hardkiss landed a Columbia/Sony deal although like many major label electronic music deals did not pan out as well as hoped.

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Posted by Billyjam, March 24, 2008 07:00pm | Post a Comment

It was a Bay Area weekend in New York with a bunch of different artists from the Bay Area in New York City over the weekend each doing their thing (Bay recognize Bay mayn).  These included the 30 member San Francisco Leonard Cohen-covering men's choir the Conspiracy of Beards who literally took Manhattan (as well as other parts of the area) as they blew everyone away during their six-gigs in two days.

These half a dozen shows included performances at  the Bowery Poetry Club, the Highline Ballroom,  Grumpy's Cafe in Greenpoint, the Box,  and on the air at both WFMU and at Neighborhood Public Radio's (NPR) interactive installation part of the Whitney Biennial 2008.  Part of their NPR (coincidentally another Bay Area artist outfit in New York & who were recently profiled here on the Amoeblog) concert/broadcast included all 30 members (as pictured above) singing both inside and outside the sidewalk of Madison Avenue on the Upper East Side of Manhattan where they did a moving rendition of none other than Leonard Cohen's beautiful song "First We Talk Manhattan."

Other Bay Area peeps in the Big Apple over the weekend included the mash-up party DJ/promoters Mysterious D (pitcured below) and Adrian from Bootie SF (profiled here on the Amoeblog last year) in town for their monthly Bootie NYC party at the Vault (an annex of the club Element) in downtown Manhattan on Friday. That same night a few blocks away at the Cake Shop the the amazing SF rock group Citay, who had driven up from a gig in Philly the night before after being at SxSW the week before, were in the New York area Friday and Saturday  doing a  few gigs including one on WFMU (on Bay Area transplant Liz Berg's great weekly show) and one at the Lower East Side club (as pictured above in the low-ceilinged basement performance space) in which they won over everyone in the house with their rich, crisp and clean sound and perfect mix that highlighted their vocals and layers of guitar.  Also over the weekend longtime Bay Area DJ Spun, who actually lives in New York these days, was representing Rong Music and spinning at both APT and Easy Lover Loft.