A major electronic music pioneer from Detroit, Juan appeared behind aliases such as Cybotron, Model 500 and Infiniti, and has released many classics of sublime Detroit techno, including the 1982 electro track “Clear”. Recorded by Atkins and Rick Davis as Cybotron, this track is often considered the first proto-techno track.
Experimenting with fusing the extra-terrestrial funk of Parliament Funkadelic with the futuristic rhythms and hard math of Kraftwerk and the progressive dance theorems proposed by Giorgio Moroder, the Model 500 12″s laid the blueprint for Detroit Techno. Along with the tracks made by two schoolmates from the grade below, Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson, Detroit Techno quickly made its way across the Atlantic and immediately sparked the emerging rave culture and soon after the entire global dance community. Moving through the later 80’s as Model 500, Atkins continued as one of the most prolific and sought after producers of electronic music throughout the 90’s, culminating in the use of an Atkins’ original as the musical bed for the 2000 launch of the Ford Focus ‘Detroit Techno’ automobile.
Packing clubs from Detroit to NY, London, Paris, Berlin…, Juan has mastered the art of soaking up new rhythmic elements from contemporary dance music while keeping his unerring, instantly recognizable sense of melody intact. Much discussed and anthologized not only for his 20 years of production credit but also for his ability to rock a dance floor, Juan Atkins’ music and DJing is deified in Europe and embraced all over the world. Juan has also been prolifically releasing albums, remixes and collaborations on Belgium’s R & S Records, Germany’s Tresor, and others. His six full-length releases are available only as imports.
Juan Atkins is widely credited as the originator of techno music.