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Biography of KEN ISHII
Ken debuted on a legendary Belgian techno label, R & S Records, in 1993. Then he won  No.1 on the UKfs NME magazinefs techno chart which led him to worldwide recognition. In 1995, the highly praised album "Jelly Tones" (R & S / Sony) was released. In the following year, the video clip for the single "Extra" from the "Jelly Tones" album (directed by Koji Morimoto, the animator of the worldwide hit cartoon, "Akira") won MTV Europe's "Dance Video of the Year" award. Since then, Ken has been regarded as one of the Japanese pioneers whose creation is on a world standard.

In 1998, Ken composed and produced the official theme song for the winter Olympics which took place in Nagano, Japan and it was played in more than 70 countries around the world. Then in 2000, Ken was on the cover of "Newsweek" magazine, featured as a symbol of the Japanese new culture. Also in the same year, he composed the theme song and soundtracks for the mega hit Japanese film, "Whiteout", which led him to a nomination for Japanese Academy Awards. Then in 2002, Ken finally set up his own label, 70 Drums, and released an album gFuture In Light.h

These days, Ken spends 2/3 of his time in Europe, Asia, North and South America and Oceania DJing and working as a true international artist. In 2004, he was awarded the best techno DJ at "Dance Music Awards" in Ibiza, Spain, proving himself to be one of the worldfs most talented DJs in the scene. Last year, he was in charge of the music for Japanese Government's Seto-Nippon Pavilion at World Expo, held in Aichi, Japan. In November, 2006, he released an original album "SUNRISER". He has also been continuously releasing on his side project, FLR, focusing on the dance floor.

A self produced demo-tape caught the eye of R & S records which led to an immediate contract with the company.

In the spring of 1993, the debut double 12' "Garden on the Palm" was released. Later in the same year, a single under Rising Sun moniker - a shared project with Tomohiro Hasekura - from the Dutch label ESP Records titled "Switch of Love" was released. Then another single gSamsara / Between The Mirrosh was released under UTU moniker from the Canadian label Plus 8 records run by Richie Hawtin & John Acquaviva. Both releases were highly praised in the European charts and in some magazines the tracks were chosen as the best techno tracks of the year. 

Played live at the "Hellraiser" event in Holland in front of 20,000+ people. It was his first ever live set.

The debut double 12" was also released from Sony Music Entertainment (Japan).  Starting to get major domestic attentions, he made his live debut in Tokyo as a part of a Transonic Recordsf event.

Played live at R & S recordsf 10th anniversary event "R & S Republica" in Gent, Belgium.

Also that year, the popular party "Reel Up" was started with DJ Yama, which is still going strong.

Participated as an artist for the very first electronic music label started in Japan called Sublime Records and released a single gFading Skyh and then an album gReference to Differenceh.

Played at "Interference", the official after hour event for the Love Parade, in Berlin, Germany.

The single, "Extra", was released. The track was used in the video directed by Koji Morimoto, the drawing director of the worldwide hit cartoon, gAkirah. Later the video was chosen as the best "Dance Music Video of the Year" by MTV. Then a full album, "Jelly Tones" containing the hit track "Extra", was released and became a worldwide hit.

Played for major festivals such as Rosklide in Denmark, Lowlands in Holland, Sonar in Spain, Rainbow 2000 and Natural High! in Japan. Also appeared in international showcase events such as MIDEM in Cannes, France and Hong Kong.

Started his side project, Flare, focusing on his experimental side, then released an album "Grip".

The track "Circular Motion" was used as the campaign song for the advertisement for the opening of Takashimaya department store in Shinjuku. Also, the track gDrummelterh was used as the theme song for the Indy 500/Le Mans racing event broadcast on TV Asahi Network.

First live tour in U.S.A., toured five major cities | New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Seattle and San Francisco.

Released an album: "Metal Blue America".

Composed and produced "Fire in White", the official theme song for the winter Olympics 1998 in Nagano, Japan and was played constantly in more than 70 countries around the world.

The first tour in Southeast Asia, touring Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and the Philippines. More than 10,000 people attended.

A new project called FLR was started to create more dance floor oriented material. The first release, gEasy Filters Part 1+2h was released on Reel Musiq.

gIslands & Continents", a collaboration video with a multi award winning contemporary artist Noriyuki Tanaka, was released. 

Released the album "Sleeping Madness" and collaborated with artists such as Talvin Singh, DJ Spooky That Subliminal Kid which took his music to a higher level by breaking borders between genres. The album was highly praised throughout the world and Ken Ishii was rated as one of the Japanese pioneers who could create world class sounds.

Later in the year, another live tour throughout Japan and Europe was done, including UKfs Reading Festival as well as Creamfields.

Produced the music, "Make me Happy", for the virtual character "MOMO".

Composed and produced "Iceblink", the theme song and soundtrack for the Japanese film "Whiteout". In the same year he was nominated for Japan Academy Awards for the best film music producer. Then a full album, "Flatspin", containing the track "Iceblink", was released.

Produced the theme song and appeared as the main character for Nikefs Presto shoe campaign.

Interviewed by Newsweek Magazine (Pan-Pacific Version)  and Kenfs photo was on the cover of the magazine.

Released a mix album gMillennium Spinninf at Reel Uph

Released an album "Easy Filters LP" as FLR.

Composed and produced "Future is What We Are", the entrance theme song for the boxer, WBA World Bantam Weight Class Champion Osamu Sato.

Found his own label g70 Drumsh, then released a new album "Future in Light".

South American Tour including Brazil and Columbia.

Was in charge of the music for XBOX Music Mixer.

Was in charge of the music for FOMA Campaign by NTT Docomo. 

Released a visual album gInterpretations for Ken Ishii | Future in Light Remixedh with a DVD

Awarded the best techno DJ at "Dance Music Awards" in Ibiza, Spain.

Composed and produced the music for the Seto-Japan pavillion at World Expo 2005 in Nagoya, Japan, with his own designed 12.2 soundsystem. Visuals and CG done by Kazuma Morino

Invited to play for the techno festival, "Fuse-In", in Detroit, U.S.A.

Released a mix album "Play, Pause and Play"

2006

Brazilian tour including Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, beach areas of Sao Paulo and Critiba.

Released an original album "SUNRISER". Collaborations with Funk D'Void, Fabrice Lig and Bryan Zentz. Exclusive iPod movies directed by Kazuma Morino became a topic of press. Followed by a release tour in Japan (Live / DJ).

Was at M2 in Spain, one of the biggest indoor dance events, along with Kraftwerk etc. Played an experimental/ambient live set at Auditorium as well as DJed at the main hall.

2007

European release "SUNRISER", on a double CD coupling with a mix album "PLAY, PAUSE AND PLAY".

Played live and DJ at one of the biggest outdoor dance festivals in Europe (50000 people), Monegros, at the main stage along with Underworld etc.

Took part in a project "TOKYO SMART DRIVER" which tries to reduce car accidents on Tokyo Metropolitan Highways. Created a theme track.

First Indonesian tour. Played at "elektra666" @ Double Six.

Single cut "Sunriser Remixes", taken from "SUNRISER". A remix album of the album is to be released in summer of 2008.

 


 

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