Derrick May’s Transmat Records was established in 1986 by Derrick May as a pioneering Techno label from Detroit. For the last 30 years Transmat is trying to save the world from bad music. For our the full catalogue visit the Transmat page and the Fragile.
Inspired by European electronic sounds and black American dance music, May set up Transmat to explore his futuristic visions of music. May’s early recordings in the 1980s set the blueprint for the what is known today as Techno. Three decades later Transmat releases such as ‘Nude Photo’, ‘The Dance’, ‘It Is What It Is’, ‘Illusion’ and ‘Strings of Life’ remain iconic and are considered the roots of the genre.
Derrick May’s Transmat records later became a breeding ground that nurtures the next generation of Detroit techno producers. May mentored a second generation of Detroit electronic musicians such as Stacey Pullen (Silent Phase), Carl Craig (Psyche), Kenny Larkin (Dark Comedy) and James Pennington (Suburban Knight), among others. Releases on Transmat records and it’s sub-label Fragile records, fueled the Techno boom we witness today all over the world.
Opened in 1988, The Music Institute in Detroit was where they held their residency. May describes the place as a spiritual place for music. “We had a young beautiful black crowd and I mean beautiful in the sense of spirit mind and soul. We had white kids coming, Spanish kids coming, gay kids coming, straight kids coming.”