Mantronix

Genres: Dance Urban & Rap
Decades Active: 1980s 1990s 2000s

Biography

DJ Kurtis Mantronik (Curtis Khaleel, 4 September 1965, Jamaica, West Indies, moving to Canada at age seven, then New York as a teenager) was the creative force behind these New York-based hip-hop innovators, a multi-instrumental talent whose knowledge of electronics was central to the band’s sound. That sound, electro in its purest form as suggested by the band’s name, was highly popular in the mid-80s. Mantronik’s use of samplers and drum machines proved pivotal to the genre’s development, not least on tracks like ‘Music Madness’, which used a snatch of ‘Stone Fox Chase’ by Area Code 615 (better known in the UK as the theme to The Old Grey Whistle Test). Indeed, the raps of MC Tee (b. Touré Embden) often seemed incidental to the formula.

The duo met at Manhattan’s Downtown Record Store in 1985, where Mantronik was mixing records behind the turntables and introducing customers to new...

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