Legendary DJ Peter Rauhofer has died at age 48 after a long battle with brain cancer, reports Rolling Stone. The DJ was a native of Vienna, Austria, but has been based in New York City for the past 20 years.
Here’s what you need to know about this legend in the remix scene…
1. He Won a Grammy for His Cher “Believe” Remix
2. He Announced to the World in April he Was Sick
Making the announcement via Rauhofer’s Facebook page, Rauhofer’s manager, Angelo, said:
Dear Friends and Loyal Fans,
As Peter Rauhofer’s manager and dear friend for many years, it is my sad duty to announce that Peter was rushed to the emergency room several weeks ago. After confirming that Peter had a seizure, further testing has revealed a large brain tumor, something that has gone undiagnosed for quite some time.
At this time, Peter’s family is working closely with a team of talented Neurologists to determine the overall best treatment option. Please be assured that he is getting the absolute finest care possible, twenty-four hours a day.
I know Peter would appreciate your kind consideration and positive energy during this extremely difficult period. We will post any updates and progress reports as they become available.
Feel free to post your condolences as well as check into this page for updates.
Up until yesterday Rauhofer was still slated to play the “Clash of the Champions” Pride Event at the Roseland ballroom in New York City.
3. He Got His Start in the Dance Music Scene in Austria
Rauhofer made his name by doing compilations as one of the best DJs in Austria in the early ’90s. He lamented the difficulty of getting the latest music in his native Austria. In response to one interviewer who asked Rauhofer what he might change about his career, he replied:
The only thing I would want to change is moving to New York earlier. That’s the only thing I would say I would’ve changed. Because — it sounds stupid, but I’ll say it anyhow, because it’s much hotter, at the kind of level than it was years ago.
4. He Became More Estranged from the LGBT Movement as His Career Progressed
An open homosexual, Rauhofer had frequently performed at fundraisers for the Pride movement as well as AIDS charities. In 2009, he had a falling out with White Party, a Miami-based AIDS charity, when he played a gig the same night as one of their events. The Miami Herald reported at the time:
Popular DJ Peter Rauhofer enraged local gay activists last fall when he produced a South Beach “Main Event” dance party in direct competition with White Party Week’s Noche Blanca AIDS fundraiser. Now, national gay activists are angry with Rauhofer:
He is reprising his Main Event party at Mansion on March 1 opposite the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force’s Winter Party Orbit fundraiser at Cameo. “It hurts the community. That’s what it comes down to,” said Chad Richter of Miami Beach, festival chairman of this year’s Winter Party. “We have volunteers who are working hard all year long. To have someone who is also gay and is doing a competing event, it’s almost hard for a lot of people to believe.
5. Last Week His Facebook Page Was Hacked
Peter’s Personal Facebook page has been hacked.We are trying to get to the root of the problem.Please be patient.-Angelo
— Peter Rauhofer (@PeterRauhofer) May 2, 2013
6. He Was Passionate About Internet Piracy of Music
He said in a 2004 interview regarding illegal downloading of his music:
It’s unavoidable, a new generation, a new era. A lot of people have no clue about copyright infringement. Years ago, after being at the club all night you couldn’t wait for the record store to open so you could go and buy what you heard last night. Now, people go home at 4 in the morning and turn on their computers and download everything. I think it’s become a bad habit because people want instant gratification but they don’t realize or they don’t care that they are hurting the label and the artist.
They download the tracks they want. On one side the use of the internet is sort of promotion because the customer, if they decide to actually go and purchase music, is more informed. I remember when I was very young, as a kid you don’t have much money so one guy in your class would buy an album and record 20 cassettes for everyone in the class. It’s the same thing today. If you buy a CD or download an MP3 it’s so easy to make CD copies for all your friends but the difference today is that with digital technology there is no loss of quality when making copies like there was with cassettes so if you can get a perfect sounding copy from a friend, why go buy the original recordings?
It’s bad because once you put a song on the internet you can’t take it back. The damage is done forever.It definitely hurts sales. In the early 90’s it was possible to sell 150-200,000 copies of a successful dance track even without radio play! Now a label is lucky to sell 5,000 copies of something. The inventor of the mp3, I think it was a German company, is responsible for all this and they should be punished because that’s the source. If the mp3 was never invented we wouldn’t have the problem.
7. His Personal Music Choices Were Varied
Despite being a God in dance music circles, when he wasn’t “spinning,” Rauhofer told a reporter he preferred to listen to the likes of Eric Clapton, Supertramp and Spandau Ballet.
8. He Started the Trance Label Star 69
Usually abbreviated to “*69,” the independent label was launched by Rauhofer in 1999. He often used the number “69” as a moniker for his aggressive house music style. His first club nights in Austria were named “Club 69.”
9. He Was Philosophical About the End
In a 2002 interview with DJTimes, Rahofer spoke about what he would do if he couldn’t make music anymore:
When I look back, I’m proud of myself because I remember the day when I had nothing. So I think to myself how amazing it is how far I’ve come, what I’ve done. I never dreamed to do this or planned to. You don’t even realize how much work you’ve done…the years just go by and when I look at my discography I think, “Wow, I didn’t even realize I did this, this, this and this.”
It’s like your own private collection of remixes. If I had to stop tomorrow I wouldn’t be sad because what I’ve done will always be there. That’s what I mean with this whole thing. That’s the satisfying part because it’s something I can always look back at and enjoy.
10. He is Survived by His Mother
Rauhofer leaves behind his mother, Helga, who lives in his native Austria.