Sven Väth - Biography

Sven Väth - Biography


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2011

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2011

The year 2011 is mainly characterised by Sven Väth's 30 Years DJ anniversary. At the beginning of the year, Sven is invited to an event organised by the German Goethe Institute in Tokyo on the 150th anniversary of the German-Japanese friendship in order to talk with his long-time friend and colleague Toby Izui within a discussion panel about 30 years of DJing, on the basis of Sven's essay about his work as a DJ and the relation of Germany and Japan regarding Techno and club culture. In this context, Cocoon Recordings has also called for a producer contest in Japan and invited the winner to a personal meeting with Sven Väth in Frankfurt at the Cocoonclub.
During his traditional Australia tour, the terrible news about the disastrous events in Japan reach Sven. He is deeply shocked and the events make him think about the meaning of his work. In a statement on the catastrophe, he writes, "With my music, I have the privilege to contribute to this 'here and now', no matter where on this world. Many people regain their strength when they let themselves go in the music, and they need this strength for their daily life." In the sense of these words, he continues his world tour, which leads him to numerous club and festival stages on all continents (except Antarctica). Also the Ibiza season at Amnesia turns out to be the most successful summer since the residency had started and attracts more guests than ever before. Sven is again elected Best DJ in Groove Magazine at the end of the year and finishes the year with some more gigs in South America and Europe.

 
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2010

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2010

Sven's annual World Tour takes him to Asia and Australia first, before he returns to Europe and then heads to South America in April. The Ibiza season starts as successful as the year before and sees Sven performing as headliner no less than 13 times at the Amnesia.

Another important event in the life of the DJ visionary in this summer is the birth of his first son Tiga on July, 26th in Vienna. In September, the Green & Blue open air marks the grand finale after a phenomenal summer season, and more than 15,000 Cocoon fans celebrate at the Langen lake far into the night.

At the end of the year, Sven Väth publishes his personal retrospect in the form of his mix CD "The Sound Of The Eleventh Season", which immediately hits #1 in the category Best Compilation in the annual poll of Raveline magazine. Besides that, Sven is voted Best DJ national in the Groove magazine poll.

 
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2009

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2009

Besides Sven Väth's annual World Tour, the tenth anniversary of the Cocoon party series in Ibiza is the main topic of the year. Sven has visited the island already in the Eighties, and its magic has captured him immediately and never let go until the present. For him, Cocoon Ibiza always was and still is the manifestation of his ideas and visions in a perfect place. The jubilee was not only celebrated every Monday, it was also the motivation to stage a very special event, entitled "We party like it's 1989": Underworld played a live set at Amnesia and Sven has compiled a Best-of DJ set from the last 20 years of electronic music.

The second jubilee in 2009 was the 5th anniversary of the cocoonclub Frankfurt. For this occasion, Sven hired the Frankfurt legend Señor Coconut and his orchestra. In October, Sven celebrated his 45th birthday – and there's no end of his tireless activities in the field of electronic music in sight.

 
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2008

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2008

In January, during their holidays in Thailand, Sven and his long-time girl-friend Nina Peter from Vienna became husband and wife within a Buddhist ceremony. Later, in May the occidental part of the wedding is held in Vienna.

Sven's annual world tour starts on January, 25th in Shanghai and ends on May, 17th in Romania, bringing him to 41 cities in 19 countries, including a small tour in Australia, where he plays alongside acts like the Chemical Brothers or John Digweed in front of 30.000 people and more.

The exhibition of Andreas Gursky's Cocoon pictures at Frankfurt's Museum für Moderne Kunst is another highlight, celebrating the 50th 12" vinyl release of Sven's label Cocoon Recordings and an accompanying Mix-CD entitled "Cocoon Morphs Tokyo" - a collaboration with the famous Womb club in Tokyo where three special Cocoon events were staged in April. The artwork of the CD and the three 12"es that form the 50th release show one of Gursky's pictures of the CocoonClub. Arranged next to each other, the three record sleeves show the complete photography. "Cocoon morphs Tokyo" is an experience that reaches beyond single forms of art: The transparency and the elegance of the photograph continues in the music by Guy Gerber, Tiefschwarz, Pig & Dan, Guido Schneider & Andre Galluzzi, Ricardo Villalobos and Anthony Rother & Sven Väth himself.

Another important step for the highly ambitious DJ and musician was moving the Cocoon Head Office to its new premises in the U.F.O. building in Frankfurt-Fechenheim where the CocoonClub had its domicile for already five years now. Being designed by Morgen company, a Frankfurt-based team of interior designers, the rooms perfectly illustrate Sven's vision of Cocoon and its importance within the field of electronic dance music.

 
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2007

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2007

From January 26th until May 25th, Sven is again on his way on the stages around the world; besides the European countries like Spain, Italy, France, Greece, Denmark, the UK or Ireland, his annual World Tour also brings him to China, Japan, Argentina, Brasil and to the US.

This is also the year when Sven starts working with his long-time friend Andreas Gursky (born 1955), a German photographer known for the highly textured feel of his enormous photographs often using a high point of view. Gursky received a strong influence from his teachers, Hilla and Bernd Becher, who are known for their distinctive method of systematically cataloging industrial machinery. This method is similarly found in Gursky's methodical approach to his photography.

As of February 2007, Gursky holds the record for the highest price paid for a photograph for his work "99 Cent II, Diptych", which sold for GBP 1.7 million (USD 3.3 million) at Sotheby's, London. Gursky's series of photographs of the Cocoon Ibiza crowd composed with the Membrane Wall from the CocoonClub Frankfurt illustrates the connection Gursky has to Techno: he has said that the only music he listens to is Techno music because its simple symmetry echoes his own work, while playing to a deeper, more visceral emotion.

 
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2006

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2006

This year, Sven's annual World Tour lasts from January to May. First, he played a few gigs in Europe, then turned to Japan for two shows and went on to South America. In Medellin / Colombia, Sven played an amazing party together with Richie Hawtin and four shows in Brazil, which were also a landmark in his tour schedule. The seventh season of the CocoonClub Ibiza was a highlight lasting for three months, seeing Sven play ten times and the Closing Party "being one of the best nights I ever had."

In summer, he headlined several Open Airs like SonneMondSterne, Nature One, Vision, Street Parade and of course the Green & Blue Open Air in his hometown Obertshausen near Frankfurt. Remarkable releases in 2006 are the annual Ibiza Mix CD 'The Sound of the Seventh Season', being released in November and his collaboration with Anthony Rother for 'Springlove'. In October, a very special highlight takes place: Sven plays an exclusive show with Underworld at the CocoonClub Frankfurt.

In November, his seventh Ibiza Mix-CD is released and immediately enters the german compilation charts at # 6.

 
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2005

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2005

Sven starts the year with an extended world tour, leading him to Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Hungary, Italy, Japan, England, USA, Russia, Spain, Greece, BeNeLux, Finland and Croatia.

The Ibiza Season is the most successful Cocoon Residency so far. In November, one of the world's leading magazines in Electronic Music, Mixmag, awards the CocoonClub Frankfurt as best club worldwide.

 
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2004

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2004

Besides the next Ibiza Season and the second edition of the Green&Blue festival, another highlight is approaching: six years after the Omen closed, Sven Väth is opening a new club in Frankfurt: the Cocoon Club. This project is undoubtedly the biggest in Sven's life so far and sets new standards for clubbing worldwide. In the first six months, the venue attracted Clubbers from all over the world and left them highly impressed.

Sven celebrated his fortieth birthday on October, 26 in CocoonClub Frankfurt and this party proved the club to be a perfect place to enjoy Electronic Music.

Another highlight in 2004 is the Audio CD / DVD "The Sound of the Fifth Season", Sven's annual revue of the ibizenkian summer. For the fifth anniversary of the Cocoon residency in Ibiza, the Audio CD was enlarged with a DVD containing interviews, live sets and many other special insights in the Cocoon world.

 
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2003

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2003

The "Fire Works" Tour is highly successful and wherever Sven plays, he leaves behind a happy and enthusiastic audience, may it be in Europe, Asia or America. Besides his numerous bookings in this time, Sven is mainly busy with the conception of the Fourth Season of the Cocoon Club in Ibiza. However, another event casts its shadows: the Green&Blue Open Air at the Waldschwimmbad Atlantis in Obertshausen near Frankfurt. The Ibiza Season turns out to be the most successful Cocoon event series on the island so far and the last party 'The Final' on September, 15th of 2003 literally ends it with a Bang!

The Green&Blue Party is the last Open Air event of the year in Germany and represents something very special for Sven: for the first time in his career, he plays in his hometown Obertshausen. The idea for this rather unique event originally came from the local authorities and Sven and his company Cocoon were prepared to listen. Not only was the Waldschwimmbad Atlantis the perfect place for the Green&Blue, it also provided the name for the party: the vast lawn and the old trees created a perfect contrast to the blue water of the basins. For Sven, it was both a comeback to the place where he learned to swim as well as a reunion with many friends from back then.

In October 2003, the Mix CD "The Sound of the Fourth Season" is released on Cocoon Recordings as a double CD and hit the German Compilation charts on No. 15.

 
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2002

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2002

After the Fire World Tour and after the end of Cocoon's 2002 Summer Season in Ibiza, where the Cocoon Club hosted its fourth residency at Amnesia, Sven is looking back to this event series. On "The Sound of the Third Season", he once more pursues different paths: together with co-resident Richie Hawtin, he managed not only to bring the music on CD, but also the unique atmosphere at the Cocoon parties by including radioplaylike cuts from the people talking in the club.

In late summer, Sven produces his first 12" for his own label Cocoon Recordings: "Vision" is not only an hommage to the Festival of Electronic Music in the Swiss mountains but also a successful club hit. Besides his bookings all over the world, Sven works on the production of the Remix album "Fire Works", which includes remixes of the "Fire" tracks, made by well known colleagues. "Fire Works" is released in March 2003 and takes Sven once more to an extended World Tour.

 
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2001

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2001

This year sees a tremendous rise in popularity for Sven. He still has bookings world wide and he plays big festivals like I Love Techno in Belgium, Dance Valley in the Netherlands, Rave on Snow in Austria or Mayday in Germany. His residency at the Amnesia in Ibiza, as well as in New York's top club Twilo and London's The End consolidate his image as one of the Global Players in Electronic Music.

Resulting from the wild and rockin' nights in the Amnesia and the chilling and relaxed atmosphere in the After Hour Club Cala Llonga is "The Sound of the Second Season – Noche y Dia", Sven's second MixCD.

The first sign of Sven Vath's ninth artist album, a cover version of Serge Gainsbourg's Classic "Je T'aime...moi non plus" in a duet with French DJ Queen Miss Kittin, is released on Dec, 3rd. In March 2002, Sven's new album "Fire" is released. The corresponding Fire World Tour with about 60 gigs world wide lead his way to almost all continents, dozens of countries and the most exclusive and important clubs of the world.

 
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2000

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2000

Sven starts the Contact World Tour in February. With thirty-three gigs in three months, he has sufficient time and space to introduce his new album. Varying from gig to gig, he presents one of the three co-producers of the album Alter Ego, Anthony Rother or Johannes Heil at his side. Cocoon grows unstoppably. With Cocoon Recordings, Sven establishes – together with Pauli Steinbach and Toni Rios – a further platform for DJs and acts. Apart from several single releases, the Cocoon Compilation "A" is released in June 2000. Since August 2000, the two hour radio broadcast Pitch Control, hosted by Pauli Steinbach and Chris Liebing is on air, featuring interviews, guests and loads of music.

After four dates in 1999, Cocoon is now represented in Ibiza each Monday with fourteen dates at the Amnesia. Sven’s idea of connecting Electronic Music with other forms of art, and thus offering the crowd a multisensual experience, is brought to life in the most perfect way in Ibiza. The connection of music, visual arts and the breathtaking surrounding on the island probably forms the most beautiful Cocoon. Being impressed by the atmosphere, and in order to provide his fans with a memory of this summer, Sven decides to produce his first official Mix-CD ever: "Sven Väth In The Mix – The Sound Of The First Season" is released on Cocoon Recordings in November 2000.

In December 2000, Virgin Records releases a compilation of ten tracks, forming a cross section of the musical output throughout Sven’s years at EYE Q, entitled "Retrospektive 1990 - 1997. Sven Väth is – in the true sense of the word – a global player. This shows in the fact that he tours all over the world, that he is official Cultural Ambassador of the German Goethe Institute, or in his performance at the EXPO 2000 in Hannover, where he spinned simultaneously with Ken Ishii in Tokyo and Kit Clayton in San Francisco.

 
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1999

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1999

The big year to set new milestones – Sven cannot be stopped. The next step is the release of all the six maxivinyls as a regular album "Six In The Mix". In this year, Sven also does another world tour, the "Six In The Mix" Tour. Cocoon sprouts further into Cocoon Clubbing, a mobile event agency touring in Germany's most important techno clubs such as Stammheim / Kassel, Tribehouse / Neuss and Prag / Stuttgart.

However, this is not enough: the Cocoon Club at the famous Amnesia in Ibiza proves to be a major success and a positive experience for many with four events in the test phase. From this year on, the Cocoon Club becomes a permanent element of Amnesia's season (every Monday from June till September).

Since early 1999, Sven and Cocoon have been working closely on the new Cocoon web pages together with Frankfurt based designer Ole Schulte and Surface design agency, available for all surfers from April 2000 under www.cocoon.net. Here, all information regarding Cocoon Events, Cocoon Booking, Sven Väth, Cocoon Merchandising and other projects such as Cocoon Club Ibiza and Cocoon Recordings can be found. For his new album "Contact" (released on March 27th, 2000) and parallel to Cocoon's flourishing development, Sven Väth co-produces twelve tracks with producers Anthony Rother, Johannes Heil and Alter Ego. This new album proves to be a piece of art with extraordinary flair and musical diversity.

Contact is a Frankfurt project – not only regarding the music it embodies. The responsible man behind the styling concept is Daniel Wöller, the photographer is Marc Trautmann, the graphics artist is Markus Weisbeck from Surface, and even the entire team involved in the video production came from Frankfurt.

 
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1998

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1998

In March 1998, Sven Väth's new record company Virgin Records releases his fourth album Fusion, a potpourri of techno, house, triphop, electro and big beat elements. The album lives up to its name: on Fusion, the typical Väth sound is updated, modernised and obviously stratified. Sven Väth starts his Fusion World Tour, playing not only all over Europe but also in Asia, America and Canada.

He makes contact with various remix artists worldwide in March. He enthuses names such as Claude Young, Richard Bartz, Johannes Heil, Sensorama (aka Roman Flügel & Jörn Wuttke), Michael Mayer, Thomas Krome, Chris Liebing, Steve O’Sullivan and Buckfunk 3000 (aka Simon Begg) with his idea to remix the best tracks of the Fusion album with completely different individual styles. The results are released in mid 1998 on limited vinyl – six records, which are already much asked collector’s items. The six cover sleeves of the 12-inch singles reveal an overdimensional headphone when fitted together.

In 1998, Sven comes to a point where he bids farewell to a major element in his life: the legendary Omen shuts down its doors forever to the public on October 18th, 1998. Typically Sven Väth: "an ending is simultaneously a new beginning, one should never stand still". For the sake of keeping a platform for electronic music in Frankfurt alive, he initiates the Cocoon Club concept. Cocoon had already started its first events in 1996, but was stopped again, due to organisational reasons. He chooses the U 60311 club as location, where every second Friday of the month the Cocoon Club now takes place. Cocoon stands for metamorphosis, development, new birth, surprises - but as well for the spirit of a family, a community.

 
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1997

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1997

Sven's Pinnacle Power takes a whole new direction as he leaves the Eye Q / Harthouse company to begin a fresh start, new and exciting, that will take him well into the next century. He also forms a booking agency to feature and support the many talented acts he is interested in.

 
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1996

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1996

Sven produces the soundtrack for the Ralf Huettner movie "Der Kalte Finger" ("The cold finger") together with B-ZET. In April, he is initiating his event project series Cocoon. Of course, its first station is Sven's home base Frankfurt, second is Munich and the last one is at the Copenhagen Art Festival. Sven's first official North American tour is a major success, and he is playing the best clubs and parties in nine cities from coast to coast.

 
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1995

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1995

Release of the Remix Album "Touch Themes of Harlequin, Robot & Ballet Dancer", including remixes of B-ZET, Underworld and Speedy J, whose remix of "Ballet Fusion" is also released as a single. Sven is without exaggeration Europe’s No. 1 DJ ("Sven is Holy Man and Big Chief of European Techno" New musical Express) and simultaneously successful all over the world: from Japan over Mexico to the US, where he is elected to be the first DJ at the famous "Lollapalooza Festival".

Together with B-ZET (Steffen Britzke), Sven starts the new project Astral Pilot and with "Electronic Acupuncture" he again releases a milestone setting album apart from the mass compatibility of many other releases.

 
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1994

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1994

Sven Väth is by far the most successful DJ in the world. (The press calls him "the only German pop star"). Start of production for the new album, "The Robot, The Harlequin And The Ballet Dancer", with Ralf Hildenbeutel ("my spiritual amplifier").

 
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1993

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1993

Release of several single tracks from the album and their remixes: "Ritual Of Life", "L'Esperanza" (charted) and "An Accident In Paradise". At the same time, besides many productions for Eye Q / Harthouse establishes itself on a worldwide basis and signs a deal with Warner Music.

 
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1992

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1992

Sven ("The Godfather of Techno") deejays in leading clubs around the world. He establishes the DJ label Harthouse and released the Album "The Art of Dance" under the pseudonym Barbarella. In the middle of the year he meets Ralf Hildenbeutel and begins production of his first album in his own name: "Accident In Paradise"; released in September. Formation of an additional label, recycle or die. The goal of all three labels: the establishment of new electronic music on the basis of German avantgarde music far beyond any commercial structures.

 
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1991

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1991

Together with publisher / manager Heinz Roth and producer Matthias Hoffmann, Sven founds the Eye Q label. First hit is Zyon's "No Fate". Sven shifts his set to "hypnotic, monotone house music", later to be called trancehouse, and through his work supports many productions in the Frankfurt area: the "Sound of Frankfurt" takes on a new dimension. His commitment to the technohouse scene also influences the repertoire at Eye Q, for which he produces many remixes.

 
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1990

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1990

Mosaic's followup single "Dance Now" becomes very successful and enters the charts. Sven's turntable style becomes harder, the nights longer. This summer techno breaks out in Germany. Sven is again one of the first to accept, adapt and play this music. The Omen club becomes an international meeting place for club culture; Sven is its protagonist. By the end of the year, hard beats and energetic vibes dominate at the Omen.

 
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1989

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1989

Acid loses popularity. House style vocals still have a chance on the dancefloor. Release of the second OFF album, "Ask Yourself", produced by Matthias Hoffmann (now Eye Q). Single "Move Your Body". The B-side, "Das Licht", is the first tranquil club hit. Sven splits with his former producers Münzing / Anzilotti and continues working on his project Mosaic with producers Matthias Hoffmann and Steffen Britzke.

Result: "It Is Serious" (later to be covered by Enigma "Sadeness"), the first track with a choir. Mosaic remixes such classics as "Déja Vu" by Spliff and "Oxygène" by Jean Michel Jarre and creates the basis for further assignments.

 
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1988

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1988

In February 1988, Sven leaves the Dorian Gray to go to Paris and do dance performances. After his return in summer, he buys the venerable Vogue together with Michael Münzing and Matthias Martinsohn. Following the complete renovation and the grand opening at the beginning of October, the club is called "Omen" and writes a new chapter of club history. Sven brings Acid sound to Germany. He produces the single "La Casa Latina".

 
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1987

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1987

At the beginning of the year, Sven switches back to the Dorian Gray (which has grown since his early days) and becomes co-patron of Belgian techno / underground music (later to be called Electronic Body Music / EBM). Its motto: pogo instead of disco fox. "Electrica Salsa" turns out to be an international success and several tours throughout Europe and South America follow.

In the middle of the year, the followup single "Step By Step" is released, then "Harry Aber Jetzt" and "Timeoperator", and, in November, the album "Organisation For Fun". Without the German press noticing, the underground club hit "Be My Dream" is declared "Gothic Techno" in the USA and England.

 
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1986

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1986

Still being DJ in the Vogue club, Sven starts making a name as a party master for himself on an international level. He works in Ibiza and after his return to Frankfurt, he produces his debut project, OFF and the Stan Ridgeway inspired single "Bad News" (for Bellaphon), with Michael Münzing and Luca Anzilotti (later to form Snap / Logic Records).

This makes Sven the first club DJ in Germany to produce and market himself. It also lays the foundation for the "Sound of Frankfurt". In the same year, he and Münzing / Anzilotti produce the second single "Electrica Salsa".

 
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1985

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1985

"Jackin’ the house", Chicago's club scene continues to develop and the terms House nation and House vibes find their way to Europe. The clubs are the safety valve of the US gay scene. Here, the steam is let off that shortly later is to get the Vogue club cooking. The word "party" becomes a permanent fixum in Väth's vocabulary.

 
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1984

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1984

Sven is now permanent DJ at the Vogue on weekends. His army of fans is growing rapidly from week to week. Typical mainstream disco music can only be heard early in the evening. American club underground repertoire makes its way into his bag.

 
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1983

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1983

The "other" club on the scene at this time, the Vogue. Sven plays diverse styles, beginning to move further and further away from the mainstream. Champagne splashing through the air and reckless excesses unusual in the pre-Techno period were an omen for the location's next chapter in history.

 
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1982

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1982

The Dorian Gray club - from regular patron to discjockey. Here, Sven's career begins with Soul oldies and High Energy during the "New Romantics" period. Freaky costumes and selfacknowledged narcissism are Sven's main characteristics in the midst of the new "lifestyle" aesthetics of the Eighties.

 
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The years before 1982

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The years before 1982

Adolescence transforms "little Sven" into an entertainer, whose experiences, adventures and impressions dominate the next years.

 
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October 26, 1964

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October 26, 1964

Sven is born in Obertshausen near Frankfurt.