Richie Hawtin is without a doubt one of today’s biggest techno DJ’s, but there was a time in the 90’s where even Hawtin himself was doubting it would ever happen. In a brand new interview with BBC World Service, Hawtin opened up about his upbringing and a significant story about how he thought his career was going to end.
In April 1995, there was a major bombing in Oklahoma City that ended up killing 168 people and injuring more than 600 others. The day after the horrific event, Hawtin had his very first Plastikman live show planned to take place in New York.
“I crossed the border that day, my brother and I were both skinheads. We had a huge trunk full of equipment and they were like ‘no, pull over’ and asked what we were doing. I didn’t have working papers for the States then. I didn’t have anything I was supposed to.”
Hawtin and his brother, Matthew, tried to claim that he was just going to record music at a friends house, but they found the flier for the show and refused to let him back in after detaining him for six or seven hours. Following this event, it took Hawtin about a year and a half to finally be able to return to the states.
“It was like my career was over. My girlfriend was living in Detroit, all the parties we were doing were in Detroit, everything that Plastikman was or had become. It was like cutting the umbilical cord. It changed everything for me.”
Because Hawtin still had his passport, he had the opportunity to go to Europe and allow his career to grow there in Ibiza, and finally moved to Berlin where he is currently based. The near 13 minute interview gives some insight into Hawtin, his life and his career that have never been heard so listen to the full interview here.