Up from the underground with DJ Hell

You know you’ve made a name for yourself when you get sued by Arnold Schwarzenegger. But years before International DeeJay Gigolo Records put an unauthorized photo of Arnie on a record sleeve, the label’s founder and owner, DJ Hell—a.k.a. Helmut Josef Geier—couldn’t put a foot wrong. He organized one of the first acid house parties in Germany, sold over 100,000 copies of his first self-produced single, “My Definition of House Music,” and was a resident at Munich’s first techno club, located in a former airport. All this elevates him to veteran status, a key figure in the history of underground music in Germany. We caught up with him for a (very) brief word as part of our “Sound Travels” series.

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Q: Approximately how many gigs do you play a year?
120.

Q: How many flights do you need to take for your annual bookings? 
150 flights.

Q: What equipment do you typically use? What do you pack?
USB, CD-R, and vinyl.

Q: What does traveling mean to you? Are you still able to enjoy it?
Travel is becoming more and more degrading!

Q: What do you miss the most when you’re on the road?
Privacy.

Q: How do you keep your life balanced?
Sport. Healthy food. Lots of sleep. Music. Country life. No alcohol. No cigarettes. No doping.

Q: What’s the best, weirdest, or craziest situation you’ve experienced on your journeys so far?
I’ll write a book about it!

Sound Travels: DJs in Transit, Berlin 2012-2017, a collaboration between Berlin’s iconic techno club Watergate, the Cosmo Hotel, and Linus Dessecker, is available to purchase at www.soundtravels.de.

Friday, May 3rd, 2019