Techno DJ/producer Rebekah was born and raised in Birmingham in the Midlands region of England, and in her mid-teens she cut her clubbing teeth at Que Club in the city by going out partying to sets by Dave Clarke, Richie Hawtin and Billy Nasty. “Before that I was listening to jungle tapes from the big raves,” she tells DJ Mag. “I was a little too young to go, but I loved the freedom this music proposed to me. The music was my escape.”
Birmingham was quite a Mecca for techno in the '90s, and despite living in Berlin now — with a few years in London in the early noughties — Rebekah says that Brum will always be her home. “I just love the Midlands people and how warm they are,” she says.
When she first encountered DJs, she had the calling of wanting to spin herself, she explains.
“It seemed accessible, open to anyone. Little did I know that making a life decision at 16 to work with music kind of means you're in it for life — that passion never really leaves you.”
As a female DJ she faced some discrimination at first, but this changed when she started producing her own music. Despite her love of techno, her first release 'Kitch Bitch 2' was very housey and owed a significant debt to 'Just Another Groove' by Norman Cook's Mighty Dub Katz. “I'm not sure if Norman Cook heard it, I have a few copies lying around — maybe I should send him one?” she chuckles.
After minimal, she moved into techno for good. “Modern techno matches my energy and suits how I play, which can be quite uptempo,” she says. “The exciting part is that the genre is still expanding and open to interpretation.”
After remixing a track for Matador, which was played by some of the techno big boys like Regis, Adam Beyer and Chris Liebing, the latter asked her to record a mix for the CLR podcast and to send him more music.
She's now a fully-fledged part of the CLR family, and the move to Berlin was largely down to being close to CLR — and to Berghain. “CLR is really big in mainland Europe,” Rebekah says. “It's been such a nice experience touring with label friends, and gigging alongside them was an experience I had not yet encountered.”
“Did I also move to Berlin because of a lack of places to play techno in the UK? Well, possibly there are fewer places, the bigger parties tend to have the more Drumcode artists or Ostgut, which is slightly more accessible,” she continues.
“There is a good healthy underground scene for the harder sounds, with London still leading the way and pockets in the major cities further north. Most excitingly is when you hit Scotland — the scene has had no downtime, so it's pretty savage for techno up there.”
Rebekah plays the Official DJ Mag BMC Party on Friday 5th June at Patterns in Brighton, along with Dave Clarke, Tom Demac, Ralf Kollmann and loads more. Tickets here
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