In the beginning Electric Chair was a one-man company. Before starting his own company founder Soenke Lohse managed two of Hamburg´s largest concert venues besides playing bass in various bands. Tour business for Electric Chair began in 1989 with the first German tour of Warp Records, featuring their acts LFO and Nightmares On Wax.
The main objective of Electric Chair has always been to set up tours and local events in every way appropriate to the then newly developed beats and dj oriented music forms. Instead of staging rock´n´roll type shows in rock´n´roll type venues, the focus was laid on clubbish vibes, multimedia show concepts and cooperations with the dance music communities, which at that time started to flourish. Besides working with progressive dance music acts, Electric Chair in their early days also produced spoken word events featuring artists like Lydia Lunch, Henry Rollins with Caspar Broetzmann, Nick Cave, Diamanda Galas and Timothy Leary.
These experiences proved very useful for through them Electric Chair achieved a competence to conceive and produce various events that crossed the borders of rave and performance, party and themepark, life and art (not quite…). galas, promotional events for radio stations, magazines and tv stations (“Rave-olution”, “10 years of Spex magazine” etc), Electric Chair did it all! Besides the booking involvement of Electric Chair with various early German hiphop projects, cooperations with German retro rare groove label Soulciety, UK´s own Acid Jazz Records and with Hamburg´s Mojo Club were the basis of Electric Chair – the agency. From 1990 to 1995 Electric Chair built up a national and international network.
The promoted music matched the team´s personal taste combined with an overall desire for new sounds. The sound brought on stage shifted back and forth from hiphop and acid jazz to concepts like triphop, drum`n`bass, big beat, downtempo, dub, poetry and nujazz, not to forget brazil and latin jazz. Electric Chair established themselves as acknowledged translator, tastemaker, driving force in the axis that connects international agents and local promoters.
Electric Chair has become a sought after partner for the development of new acts. The agency closes the gap between enterprising club promoters (the ones with mobile phones but no fax…) and the big promotional companies. Uncompromisingly high production standards and the willingness to develop new artistic concepts in terms of sound and vision, gave Electric Chair their main asset – their reputation! Tours with acts like Rockers Hi-Fi, Morcheeba, Lamb, dj bookings with trendsetters like James Lavelle, DJ Krush, DJ Shadow, Gilles Peterson and event series like the legendary “London Underground Nights” were pioneering feats in the German clubscene. On the local side of things the range of involvement remained multifacetted. From the first really big hiphop shows in Hamburg with acts like LL Cool J, Stetsasonic, Public Enemy, Jungle Brothers, Brand Nubian and the likes to charity.
The years 1995-2000 saw a decrease in local productions in favour of Electric Chair´s tour business, meanwhile having become an international affair. Simultaneously Electric Chair used their experiences also to offer management services to individual artists. Concerning local shows in Hamburg, most important became the exclusive booking of the live shows at the renowned Mojo Club, where bands like Basement Jaxx, Cinematic Orchestra, Rob Gallager & Valerie Etienne, Nightmares On Wax, The Herbaliser, Jimi Tenor, Kojak, Nils Petter Molvaer, Lamb, Raw Stylus, Red Snapper, Jhelisa, Joyce, Maysa, Me´shell Ndgeocello, Corduroy, Carleen Anderson, Mother Earth, Pucho&His Latin Soul Brothers, Digable Planets, MC 900 ft Jesus, Brand New Heavies, K-creative and Urban Species rocked the house. The annual Popkomm event “Friendly Electric” in Cologne, and the Drum Rhythm Nights were two of Germany´s highest profile event series, courtesy of Electric Chair. Electric Chair had taken care of the managemenent and booking of Vienna’s famous artists Kruder & Dorfmeister and their solo projects. Electric Chair believe that the art of the business cannot be the short-lived hype earning short-lived money.
Electric Chair stands for the continuous development and the affectionate care of the artists represented. In 2021 Electric Chair is still located in the heart of Hamburg City and represents internationally known artists like Gregory Porter, Nicola Conte, Timo Lassy, Magnus Lindgren, Myles Sanko, Avery*Sunshine, Philippe Cohen Solal from Gotan Project, Ursula Rucker, Lamb and Cinematic Orchestra. Also Electric Chair remains a sought after partner in the international tour business. Electric Chair is an independent, personal company for independent, personal music.