In over two decades, as a businesswoman, multi-media artist, and DJ, Kelli Hand, is the First Lady of Detroit techno. Don’t think of K-HAND as just another Detroit-based producer, re-mixer or DJ. Think of her instead as one of the city’s best, as bold as that thought may seem. An internationally recognized veteran of the legendary Techno City’s bottomless talent pool, Hand stands alongside Detroit’s elite, the sort of DJ that has devoted more than a decade to working crowds into a tech house – or house-fueled frenzy.
Truly ahead of her time like much of her aforementioned Motor City peers, Hand racks up many accolades. These include being the first woman to release house and techno at the start of the ’90s, the first producer from Detroit to release on Warp Records in ’94, and the first artist to contribute an album to Studio !K7 in ’96. She also regularly factors into the mix as a representative for her heralded city on compilations from Third Ear Recordings, Astralwerks, Sublime Records, and Tresor-Berlin, going on to release an entire Techno album with the Berlin staple techno club and record label.
Hand hasn’t just worked with a who’s who of Techno, she’s a Phenom in her own right, a DJ and artist that significantly “deserves more shine.” It’s good news for K-HAND fans the world over then that it’s her time once again. Hand continues to maintain a vigorous touring schedule as a traveling DJ, bridging the gap between house and techno while providing clarity to an often-confused industry on what those two things really mean. Playing her own part in defining the styles, as put by Fact, “in her hands differentiations between different strands of house and techno become irrelevant: it’s all just source material for her sterling sets.” Or in Kelli’s own words, “I like to play different musical perceptions to the kids. It’s all just good dance music”. And there’s not many places clubbers haven’t been able to enjoy K-Hand, conquering much of the globe and frequently hitting major cultural hubs across the Americas, Europe, Australia, and Asia. Her sets pour out of the speakers and pound the walls of iconic venues the likes of Ministry of Sound and fabric (London), Club Yellow (Tokyo), and, of course, Tresor (Berlin). Hand is not only regularly billed for the Detroit Electronic Music Festival, an annual pilgrimage of techno fans to its mecca and her home town; she’s also served on the board.
It’s a safe bet for fans to keep their eyes on Acacia, now as much as ever, and trust K-HAND will deliver.