A child of the acid house generation, Steve Lawler has been busy with the beats long before genres were but a twinkle in clubland’s eye. Steve Lawler needs no introduction, but he certainly warrants one. You would be hard pushed to ﬁnd a more in-form, in-demand, exceptionally talented artist, regarded as highly by his industry peers as he is by his huge global base of musically educated fans. Steve Lawler originally gained interest in the music scene around the age of 16, listening to pirate radio stations. Beginning at age 17, Lawler staged a series of illegal parties in a tunnel under the M42 motorway from 1990 to 1994. After several parties, the event began to regularly attract over 500 people and eventually earned Lawler appearances at proper clubs.
Lawler's first break came in 1995, when DJ Jason Bye asked him to play daily at Ibiza's reputed Café Mambo of San Antonio "Sunset strip" fame. In 1997 Steve's big break came when he met Darren Hughes of the nightclub Cream, who signed him to a residency at Cream. In 2000, Steve started his first mix compilation series, titled 'Dark Drums'. This same year Steve started his new residency for Darren Hughes, at the infamous Club Home, where Steve Lawler held his own Friday nights Deep South which he ran until the club shut down 1 year later. He also released the single "Rise In" on Bedrock Records, which featured vocals from the Reef song Mellow (and previously remixed by Prince Quick) and reached No. 50 on the UK Singles Chart and No. 15 on Billboard's Hot Dance Music/Club Play. This same year, he was asked by Boxed to mix the third entry in their Nubreed series, Nubreed 003. After his Nubreed release, Lawler approached Boxed with the idea for the Lights Out series. In 2001 Lawler started a night in his hometown Birmingham called the Midweek Session, this was run for 12 parties only, running monthly on a Thursday night. Lawler returned to London in 2002 with the beginning of his "Harlem Nights" event at The End, which was one of The End's most successful nights and ran continuously for 7 years. Lawler founded the record label VIVa MUSiC in 2006.
Dubbed the ‘King of Space’ Ibiza, Steve Lawler is a brazen and groundbreaking artist who defies generic boundaries, and has done so ever since his days of organising the infamous motorway raves under the M42 in the United Kingdom. A legend in his own right, his releases and remixes have been signed by some of the world’s most established and reputable recording labels as R&S Records, Drumcode, Cocoon, OVUM, Sci+Tec, and of course his own recording label VIVa Music. He is the kind of artist who does not shy away from arduous work to go beyond the limits of one’s own abilities.
Known as one of the hardest working artists in the industry, he is dedicated to setting precedences and acknowledging the importance of supporting other up and coming talent through his label. Founded in 2006, ViVa has featured tracks by himself and such artists as Audiofly, Simon Baker, Jamie Jones, Davide Squillace, Bushwacka, Ilario Alicante, Tiefschwarz, to name a few. The label continues to receive support by many house and techno heavyweights. The label’s accolades are not limited to the electronic music world, as it has also been involved in creating remixes with such high profile artists such as Dido, Jamelia and Justin Timberlake. To add to his repertoire of achievements, the label recorded a track for the blockbuster horror motion picture ‘The Skeleton Key’.
Steve’s incredible career recently became the subject of a new dance music documentary, ‘The Art Of The DJ’. Directed by Piers Sanderson – who is well known for the 2010 acid house documentary ‘High On Hope’ – the 80 minute film chronicled his ascent through dance music’s tumultuous formative stages, before reaching his current status. Steve’s story makes for a fascinating insight into the genre, whilst showcasing the extent of his skill as a DJ.
Catch him live at epizode³ on January 6th.
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