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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Detroit techno pioneer dies of heart attack

Created On January 22nd, 2008 by shunji

Detroit vinyl mastering guru Ron Murphy died of a heart attack this week, aged 58. The unassuming studio genius was described on Discogs ‘as probably one of the most instrumental figures in the history Detroit electronic music’, mastering records for the likes of Derrick May, Juan Atkins, Carl Craig, Kevin Saunderson and Jeff Mills, and helping define the sound that became known as techno.

Ron’s company Sound Enterprises announced that a Memorial Service will be held on Saturday January 26th at Santieu Funeral Home in Garden City, posting a poignant video interview on their website of Ron discussing his craft. “A lot of people ask me what I do and I tell them I cut records,” he explained. “I don’t record people, I cut the masters,” he clarified. “Something that’s already mixed down: we may touch it up a little here and there. And you don’t want these things (records) to be too long- the shorter the better. The shorter it is the louder it is,” he added.

Underground Resistance leader Mike Banks (reputedly a close friend) declined to comment, though British techno pioneer Dave Clare was more forthcoming. “Ron Murphy will be sorely missed,” Dave told Skrufff. “He was the catalytic converter of raw sounds from enthusiastic project studios to legendary vinyl presses that rocked clubs around the world, he was the Bob Katz of techno and his passing with all the years of gained knowledge comes in the last chapter of the Edison era for phonographic recordings,” he said.