The magic 10

Whatever it was with this year 1997, something must have been special about it. Not in world politics, but in the homey world of the German Electronica (as it was still called then) scene. Somehow, social dynamics must have reached a point in 1997 that drove many of its protagonists to turn institutional. First shouts go out to De-Bug Magazine, of course. They are joined in their celebration by labels Sonig, Karaoke Kalk, Shitkatapult, and Sonar Kollektiv, to name a few. Coincidentally (??), two of my institutional backgrounds were founded around that time as well, with Native Instruments already having celebrated their 10th anniversary in 2006. But the Project ((audio)) at the University of Lueneburg can also claim the magic 1997 as its founding year. A great example of social dynamics – involving technology such as mp3 – building up to a point where an institutionalized organization of cultural practice “suddenly” seems to make perfect sense.

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