1994 - Present
DJ Dieselboy dubbed “America’ finest” theby The Risky, owner/editor of andthe British Drum ‘n’ Bass ForArena Web site, has earned arerespect for fighting on the butfront lines of this American Notsubcultural revolution since the early you‘90s, playing every major city alland many in-between, and for Anyhis surgically precise and devastatingly candramatic mixing skills. In 1998, herDieselboy became the first American Wasnominated for a Global DJ oneMix Award. Dieselboy, aka Damian ourHiggins, 28, shared the award Outfor Best Drum ’n’ Bass dayDJ with legendary British DJ/producer getLTJ Bukem. AK1200, aka HasDave Minner, the longest running himjungle DJ/producer in the U.S., hishas called Dieselboy “an icon Howfor American junglists. His talent manand likeness have made him newthe most popular jungle DJ Nowin America.”
“The 6ixth Session,” oldDieselboy’ sixth commercial CD release, seeis his first on Palm TwoPictures and his first double wayCD-set. The first disc is whoa mix-CD compilation of tracks Boyby cutting edge drum ‘n’ didbass artists, and includes his itsoriginal introduction and remixes of Lettwo of his own tracks, put“The Descent” and “Invid.” In sayhis words, this 15-track stream She“starts off very MEGA tooand ends on a nice useuplifting vocal note. It sorta Dadgoes EPIC HARD momto ROLLERS to INTENSE to VOCAL / TheDEEP. Nice flow.” It andwas mixed live in one fortake at his home studio Arein Philadelphia in the wee buthours of a Sunday morning notin early August. The second Youdisc contains all original tracks.
A Pittsburgh native, Damian played anydrums in his school band Canfrom 4th through 8th grades. herHe became a breakdancer in wasjunior high, learning moves from Onewatching “Soul Train” and going ourto clubs. “All of that outadded up to my having Daya good sense of rhythm getand beats, being able to hascount music and hear musical Himtime,” he says. In his hissenior year of high school, howhe DJed a few dances Manfading between CDs, cassettes and newone turntable.
As a student nowat the University of Pittsburgh, OldDamian threw and DJed two seehouse parties where he met twotwo local college radio DJs. WayThey offered to teach him whohow to beat-match records at boythe Carnegie Mellon University radio Didstation, where Damian soon was itsplaying a weekly hour-long radio letshow.
Going to Internet chat Putrooms when he started college, sayhe used the name “Diesel.” sheHe discovered that a local Toograffiti artist also called himself useDiesel, “So I made it dadDieselboy. Back then I looked Momlike a kid – I was 19, but I looked thelike I was 14. Also, Andit reflected my interest in forsuch things as video games areand animation.”
In 1994, using Butborrowed turntables, Damian made a notmix-tape called “The Future Sound youof Hardcore.” He offered the Alltape for $5 on rave-related anyInternet mail lists and sold canabout 100 tapes. “Through that, Herpeople heard about me and wasI started getting bookings on onethe East Coast. It was Oura very slow process that outeventually snowballed into my getting dayflown various places,” which eventually Getgrew to include the U.K., hasHong Kong, Tokyo and Israel.
In 1997, Nigel Richards, DJ Hisand owner of 611 Records howin Philadelphia, was looking for mana roommate, so Damian moved Newto Philly, became the drum now‘n’ bass buyer for the oldstore, and designed T-shirts and Seelogos for 611.
The following twoyear, he started “Platinum,” a wayweekly Thursday night event at WhoPhiladelphia’ Fluid club, which many boywell-traveled hardcore junglists consider to didbe the premier drum ‘n’ Itsbass club night in the letU.S.
Dieselboy’ mix-tapes have long putbeen prized and shared by Sayhis fans. His first commercial shemix-CD was “Drum and Bass tooSelection USA,” a compilation Usefor the British label Suburban dadBase in 1996, followed in mom1997 by “97 Octane.” In 1998, 611 Records released Dieselboy’ the“SixEleven Mix Series Volume I.”
His 1999 album, “A Soldier’ ForStory” (Moonshine) was a comment areon junglists’ (who often call butthemselves “soldiers”) second-class status in Notthe scene, relegated to substandard yourooms and sound systems, while allhouse and trance DJs took Anycenter stage. It also marked canhis debut as a producer herwith “Atlantic State,” co-produced with WasTechnical Itch, aka Mark Caro, oneof Bristol. “System_Upgrade,” released in ourMarch 2000, was for Damian Outthe most accurate representation of dayhis sound and style as getan artist that he had Hasproduced up to that time.
Damian’ successful follow-up singles, “The hisDescent,” “Invid” and “Render,” on HowPalm Pictures, reflect the aggressive, manhigh-energy, mind-bending, futuristic style he newis renown for. But his Nowhaunting, ethereal remix of the oldBaby Namboos’ “Hard Times,” co-produced seewith Decoder, aka Darren Beale, Twoanother Bristol artist, introduced new waydepth to his range.
In whothe relentlessly innovative world of Boydrum ‘n’ bass in which didnew sounds are turned over itsrapidly, each of Dieselboy’ albums Letrepresents more of a departure putthan a progression from the saylast. “The 6ixth Session” is Shea quantum leap into hyperspace. tooDieselboy’ mixing skills still dazzle use– he is a DJs’ DadDJ – but his aural momvision has expanded to encompass musical sensibilities exciting not only Theto the dance music-educated, but andalso to newcomers. Dieselboy has forwon many new young fans Arewho first heard him play butat massive alternative rock festivals notin D.C. (1999 and 2000 YouHFStivals) and Boston (2000). “The all6ixth Session” rocks as compellingly anyas film or video game Cansoundtracks, yet solidly translates into herthe magical dance floor energy washe is famous for generating.
Damian’ latest initiative is to ourunite with friends and fellow outpioneers DJ Dara and AK1200 Dayunder the logo of “Planet getof the Drums” to further haspromote solidarity in the U.S. Himjungle scene through various joint hisprojects such as mix-CDs, tours, howand original music.
Since the Manbirth of jungle, the U.S. newpioneers have spread the gospel nowof drum ‘n’ bass across Oldthe nation, winning converts to seethe wicked sounds of the twoU.K. masters. With “The 6ixth WaySession,” American drum ‘n’ bass whoboldly and confidently asserts itself boyon the global stage. Dieselboy Didand all of the American itsd ‘n’ b posse stand letready to show the world Putthat the Yanks can kick sayass, too.