Kevin Saunderson, a.k.a. Reese
, a.k.a. E-Dancer
, a.k.a. Inner City
, is the Elevator
of techno - a legend in his own right, known and respected around the world, as one of the three men from Detroit (the other two are Juan Atkins
- the Originator
, and Derrick May
- the Innovator
) who originated techno
Kevin was born in Brooklyn, NY in 1964, but moved at the age of nine to Detroit. He attended Belleville High School, and then moved onto Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti, where he played football. After 2 years Kevin quit playing football in order to pursue a musical direction, so he joined his high school pals, Derrick May & Juan Atkins, which unknown at the time would be the move that would help Kevin's career escalate.
He started as a DJ and developed new skills that led him into producing records, which he released on his own label KMS Records. The demand for his artist/DJ/producer derived records was overwhelming overseas as well as in the States - cities like Chicago and New York were open to Kevin's new brand of music. He introduced acts like Kreem, Reese, Inter-City, and Reese & Santonio. Kevin has many other aliases such as Tronik House, Reese Project, Essaray, E-Dancer and Kaos, which he uses to show his versatility in being able to create different modes of dance music.
Kevin's biggest achievement so far and most commercially recognized project has been Inner City, which is widely acclaimed as one of the world's most important dance acts. Since emerging as one of the most influential prime movers in the house and techno revolution of 1988, Kevin Saunderson and Paris Grey - the second member in the group - have been to the top, struggled, and bounced back to the top of the pile.
In l987 Kevin, then a 22-year-old Detroit college telecommunications student struggling to pass his exams and at the same time make a success of his fledgelling indie record label KMS, recorded a backing track in a makeshift studio stuck in the basement of his apartment. He needed a girl vocalist who could also supply lyrics and his friend, Chicago house producer Terry "Housemaster" Baldwin suggested Paris Grey. She agreed, flew into Detroit, came up with lyrics and "Big Fun" was born. Incredibly the tape was then filed away and almost forgotten until months later UK dance afficionado Neil Rushton visited Detroit to put together a compilation album, "Techno - The New Dance Sound Of Detroit" for Virgin. He freaked out upon hearing the track, made sure "Big Fun" was on the LP and soon afterwards it was released as a single and went on to become a worldwide smash. But despite its sudden success, Paris hung on to her job as a sales assistant in a Chicago store - only quitting when the follow-up, "Good Life" even outsold "Big Fun". Their debut album, "Paradise" cemented this prosperity and highlighted the Detroit techno blueprint of mesmerising rhythms that owed more to the white European synth groups of the 70's and early 80's, like Kraftwerk, Can & Depeche Mode than to the black dance music roots of the 60's and 70's that Chicago house and New Jersey garage related to.
To date, Inner City have had eight top 40 hits in the UK, as well as having had two top twenty albums with combined sales of more than 6 million. Inner City have also achieved many many awards for outstanding accomplish-ments, such as being voted the 'Best Dance Act' in the world by DMC in 1989 & 1992. Inner City have also received 4 gold singles and 1 gold album, 4 number one billboard club hits and 7 number one club hist in the UK.