There is something about small, forgotten about cities and towns in large countries that seems to breed musical genius. Hailing from Perth, West Australia, the hometown of artists such as Tame Impala, Pendulum, INXS and Bön Scott (AC/DC), I can sense that growing up in a sleepy town can produce a unique creativity.
Detroit, Michigan, commonly known as the Motor City, fits within this category on an even larger scale. Detroit has a rich musical history spanning through this century across all genres such as blues, jazz, soul, rock & roll, techno and hip hop, and its repertoire includes Motown Records, Aretha Franklin, Amp Fiddler, J Dilla and Theo Parrish.
Kenny Dixon Jr., better known by his stage name Moodymann, is one such artist from Detroit. Starting as a DJ on the Detroit scene playing techno and house music and also working at several record stores in the city, he found popularity in the mid-90’s in France, of all places, thanks to his releases on Planet E Records and from there his fame grew.
Now, he is an outspoken yet elusive voice in electronic dance music and owner of the record labels Mahogani Music and KDJ Records. His name is synonymous with Detroit music and he has become an icon due to his no holds barred approach to production, innovatively reworking riffs, samples and creating grooves.
To celebrate his legacy, Moodymann has partnered with seminal brand New Era to release a self-branded collection of hats and apparel. Complementing the collection is a short but intimate documentary on the artist so few people know on a personal level.
Speaking on the collaboration, Moodymann says, “I first met the New Era team at Dimensions festival back in 2015 and we started casually talking about custom bucket hats. We stayed in touch and a couple of years later I flew to their London office to design this collection. Using the Detroit Trademark English ‘D’ was the most important element to me. I always want to support my city. I keep Detroit dust under my feet no matter where I‘m standing”
To mark the release of the collection, a launch party was held at Brilliant Colours with a screening of the documentary Detroit Dust On My Shoes followed by a Q&A with the documentary director and Mahogani Music’s Label Head. Moodymann himself was an unexpected surprise guest meeting with the crowd and answering some questions during the Q&A.
And that’s what you come to expect from an artist as passionate but private as Moodymann. His music and his style, fashion or not, is his true legacy.
The New Era x Moodymann Detroit inspired collection drops Tuesday 17th September. The range includes three pieces of headwear; a wool Adventurer hat, a fully reflective, reversible bucket hat and a classic 9FIFTY cap.
Also available in the collection is a long-sleeved t‑shirt, and premium wool varsity jacket with design details including Moodymann’s signature, iconic KDJ Records logo and the beloved Detroit Tigers Old English ‘D’.
Shop the collection now at: http://www.neweracap.eu/ prices starting from £30.
Kylie de vos
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