Josh Wink

Josh Wink

One of the true pioneers of techno, house and allied styles

Josh Wink
“Some people get pigeonholed as being into just one thing”, Wink remarks. “I hate that. When there are rules, it doesn’t become art, and it’s not fun. I’ve learned that you can’t please everybody, so I’d rather be concerned with making good art, and the people that like this art will stick with you.” Philadelphia born and based Josh Wink is one of the true pioneers of techno, house and allied styles – blurring the definitions. At 13, a young Josh Wink began his first job as an apprentice at Captain Jack’s mobile DJ Company, three years later he had started to DJ at local house parties. By 1988 – the year that ‘rave’ exploded into public conscious – Wink was already a main player on the underground music scene. “Then I began to realise that I had ideas of songs. Instead of DJing other people’s music, I wanted to translate these ideas into my own music that was in my head. House music and new wave electronic music really influenced me when I was a teenager. Plus, going to see Jazzy Jeff and Cash Money DJ in Philly made me want to get more into the ‘art’ of DJing.” In 1990, just out of his teens, Wink released his first EP ‘Tribal Confusion’ on the infamous Strictly Rhythm imprint, under the moniker E-Culture (with King Britt), also releasing other EPs under various different guises. In 1994 he formed his own imprint ‘Ovum Recordings’ and released ‘Liquid Summer’ – a track which helped propel him onto the international circuit. In 1995, Josh Wink became one of the first DJ/producers to translate his music from the underground to above and to international success. He consecutively unleashed a string of classics including ‘Don’t Laugh’ (recorded as Winx on Nervous Records) and ‘Higher State of Consciousness’ – tracks that topped charts worldwide and that are still recognised and played today. In 1996, whilst gaining recognition from leading press including Rolling Stone magazine, Josh Wink released his debut album ‘Left Above The Clouds’ (under the name Winx) on Nervous Records. In 1998, he released his second LP ‘HearHere’ on his own Ovum imprint. With ‘HereHear’ Wink pushed boundaries even further, inviting fellow artists as diverse as Trent Reznor (Nine Inch Nails), Caroline Crawley (Shelleyann Orphan / This Mortal Coil), and Philly poet Ursula Rucker (Jazzanova / The Roots) to contribute to a far-reaching disc that ran the gamut of electronic music styles – from ambient and trip-hop to drum & bass, as well as the trademark mix of house and techno on which Wink has built his international reputation. “I wanted to continue to push my envelope of making diverse electronic music and not have pressure to only make dance music.” In 2003 Josh Wink delivered his third artist album ‘20 To 20’ on Ovum – moreover a collection of his own work that he would class as his ‘secret weapons’ on the dancefloor; heavily 303 inspired releases that delved into Wink’s Acidic House roots. In 2004 Wink once again set dancefloors in motion with EPs ‘516 Acid’ and ‘Oakish’ – EPs which garnered support both from both the old-school and the new DJs and styles filtering into the scene. In 2006 he released ‘Have To Get Back’ (no vox version) on M-nus, under the moniker Dinky Dog, as part of M-nus’s ‘MinimizeToMaximize’ / various artist compilation. He also released the third in the Profound Sounds series – ‘Profound Sounds Vol.3’ (coming out in the UK on Ministry of Sound entitled ‘Sessions’) – which exclusively included the remix he crafted for Radiohead’s ‘Everything In It’s Right Place’. Into 2008 and Wink has once again switched styles, altered rules and initiated a change. With his influential EP ‘Stay Out All Night’, released on Ovum. Wink went against the current musical grain and paired NYC 90’s house with Chicago jackin’ beats and a bit of St. Germain. Wink also spent the first half of 2008 preparing his fourth artist album – ‘When a Banana Was Just a Banana’. Josh Wink’s Ovum imprint, since its beginnings in 1994, has seen releases from Loco Dice, Shlomi Aber, Marc Romboy, DJ Pierre, Aaron Carl, King Britt, Steve Bug, D’Julz and of course his own productions. It still continues to grow by both introducing new talents and releasing one-offs from some of the world’s best known producers. “Ovum is about integrity to good music! We feel that we don’t have to follow the music that is trendy or fad-like at the moment.” As a DJ, since his 1988 ‘rave’ beginnings, Josh Wink extensively traveled the globe since 1995 – playing every festival that counts, through to the smallest and underground venues around the globe. “The Best DJ experience is being able to create an audio atmosphere where an audience can absorb from me, while I get absorbed from them.” His only residency in the world is held in his hometown of Philadelphia at Fluid. Taking trends, making trends and breaking trends, Josh Wink’s music (under its many monikers including Wink, Winc, Winks, Winx, The Crusher, E-Culture, and Size 9, Accent, Dinky Dog, J Dawg and The Crusher) has always experimented and influenced. The sound of Josh Wink today remains one of a man unafraid to walk the border between stylistic boundaries.

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Josh Wink

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