Djax History

Djax Records was founded by Saskia Slegers (Miss Djax) in 1989. Having worked in a record shop for many years, Saskia met a large number of promising artists whose music never got released because, according to the Dutch record-companies, it was "not commercial" enough. At that point she decided that the time was right to start her own label. The first release on Djax Records was a complete album by the Eindhoven based hardcore rap band 24K (No Enemies, 1989). Only a few months later the first 12" of Terrace (916 Buena Avenue, 1990), who also lives in Eindhoven, was released on a new division of Djax: Djax-Up-Beats was born......

At least half of the releases on Djax-Up-Beats are from artists hailing from Chicago. This special contact between Saskia and Chicago has existed since the very beginning. As a techno/acid deejay Saskia kept up with all the stuff from Chicago, so it was logical that the Chicago style would fit perfectly on Djax-Up-Beats. In 1991 Saskia went to Chicago and Detroit to meet her favourite producers in person and to see with her own eyes were it all had started. In Chicago she visited the famous Warehouse club with Armando, went toTrax Records, DanceMania etc. while in Detroit she hang out with Carl Craig and Mad Mike. It was a great experience and after two weeks she went back home with a bag full of acid and techno tracks from producers like K-Alexi, Felix Da Housecat and Paul Johnson. Djax-Up-Beats became the first European platform for the producers from Chicago: a bunch of new talent like Mike Dearborn and DJ Skull as well as the old skool heroes like Steve Poindexter and DJ Rush, they all got signed to Djax. But not only artists from Chicago found their way to Eindhoven. From all over the world new fresh talent got picked up by Saskia: Luke Slater and Steve Stoll and not to forget many Dutch producers like Random XS and Like A Tim.

In 1992 Djax started a cooperation with the legendary Warehouse label from Chicago producer Armando. Some of the most sought after Chicago house classics such as Work That Mutha-Fucker and Circus Bell’s were remixed by top-producers like Edge Of Motion and Hardfloor and became a massive underground hit. Till today these records can be found in the record boxes of many of the world's top techno deejays!

The image and looks of Djax-Up-Beats have always been very important to Saskia. Since 1991 she has been working with Alan Oldham, the famous illustrator from Detroit USA and former illustrator for Transmat. Alan drew hundreds of beautiful illustrations and four Miss Djax comic books for Djax-Up-Beats.

For four years in a row, from 1995 to 1998, Djax proudly took part in one of the major techno happenings: the famous Berlin Loveparade. In 1998 Djax even had the honour to start at pole position nr 1! Many people will remember the 20-metres long red/silver Djax-Up-Beats rocket with 20.000 watt of techno terror on board!

Besides the worldwide respected releases on Djax-Up-Beats, Djax Records is also known for being the first company to release Dutch spoken rap-music, later called Nederhop. In 1991 Saskia discovered The Osdorp Posse that soon became the most popular rap-band of the Netherlands! In 1995 they won the Dutch Popprijs for being the most innovative Dutch band! Also ABN and Spookrijders were two of Djax’s successful nederhop bands. But there’s more, in 1997 Saskia founded two new divisions named Djax-X-Beatz and Djax-Break-Beatz. Both divisions gained success with groups like Grumpyhead, Head First and Seda who combined dance (bigbeat, drums ‘n bass, triphop) with pop and rock. With these two new divisions Djax lifted up its position at the Dutch music market and both in 1997 and 1998 Djax Records received the Dutch Award for being Best Record Label.

Nowadays the label has a huge back catalog of over 400 releases and is credited as one of the founders of electronic dance music.