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From The Digital Sweatshop
The Music, Art and Travels of Alan D. Oldham a.k.a. DJ T-1000.

Jeff Mills.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Me and Giaxia had drinks with the great Mr. Mills last night. There's this place called Rodan in Wicker Park, little hipster-type joint on Milwaukee, we met up there.

Mills is cool, busy as ever. He's got projects upon projects coming out. I'd tell you about them, but I'm sworn to secrecy. In fact, he's leaving tomorrow back to Europe. He'll be gone a month this time.

Conversation came around to my book, "The Last DJ On Earth: My Life and Times in Detroit's Techno Underworld." It's completely written, but I thought I was getting out of the game when I wrote it. Obviously, I'm not done yet, if anything, I'm back in action, so I decided not to release it right now. I mean, I still see some of the people I write about, and not all of it is good! Jeff asked me if I wrote anything bad about him. I had to laugh, of course not! Jeff's wife wants to read the manuscript, though, I'm thinking of letting her. She's cool.

We also talked about the old days in Detroit, the early '80s. That's when I first met Jeff. I went to Henry Ford High and he went to Mackenzie. We met through this guy I used to draw comics with back in the day, Brent Carpenter (Brent actually lettered the first two issues of my first comic, "Johnny Gambit," back in '86).

I was also interested in radio and DJing even then (I was an announcer at my high school radio station), and Brent said he knew this guy two doors down who mixed records, and that guy was Jeff. This was before house music, techno, anything. We both worked at Northland mall together for awhile. I worked at The Art Works, and Jeff worked at a store that sold wicker furniture, right across the hall. God, this was like '81-'84, somewhere in there.

I remember breakdancing was in back then, and guys used to come to the mall and dance in front of the big mirrors there. If you've ever seen the video for Michael Jackson's "Beat It," guys used to really dress like that in Detroit. Also, Prince was huge. Guys used to get perms and Jheri Curls to look like him and Morris Day. They'd hang out at the mall to pick up white girls. White chicks were never into brothas before Prince came out, then they all became freaks overnight, wearing purple and dressing like Vanity 6. They'd come to the mall like that, in camisoles and shit. Not to be outdone, sistas became all freaky and bi, too. We used to play Monopoly at Carpenter's dad's apartment, me, Jeff, a whole bunch of us. Every time I see Jeff, I think of those days.

Oh, and if Jeff hadn't left UR in '92, and I hadn't taken his place, there would be no DJ T-1000 today. No Generator, no Pure Sonik, no Tresor, nothing. So I always credit Mills and Mike Banks for getting me started.

But, wait a minute, I'm giving away info that's in the book for free ;-)

Anyway, other than that, nothing going on except bangin' out tracks and getting these dates together for the summer. Just a few US dates here and there.

-AO :: 4:48 PM ::


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