to his 21st birthday, Rikler was secluded from the world of turntables,
mixers, and electronic dance music. He grew up playing a variety of
instruments, learning each with ease. With this diversity of skill
behind him, it is easy to see how Rikler, after three short years,
has quickly burst onto Chicago's Global Underground scene.
Once introduced to the club scene, Rikler was hooked. The vibe was
unlike any other, and there was something in the music that moved
him. It was nothing like he had imagined. Not long after, Rikler became
a bouncer at the Chicagoland club responsible for his change in attitude
about electronic music. He remained a bouncer there for about a year
until he became interested in learning the skill behind the vibe he
so deeply enjoyed. By this time, all previous instruments were forgotten.
He was now set out in a new direction of determination, to become
a master of the beats.
Upon hearing him grow into his talent after two months, Rikler was
offered a job as a dj three nights a week. He would play an 8-hour
set, then stay after hours and practice while the bar was being cleaned.
Without having any equipment of his own, this was the only way he
could improve his skills. Roughly six months after getting the gig,
and endless hours of practice, Rikler became bored. Not with mixing,
but with the selection of tracks to play. The music format for the
bar was everything and anything mainstream. He had hit a dead end.
Something had to change. One day it did.
Driving in his car on a Saturday evening listening to Energy 92.7&5,
he heard Clubland Underground for the first time. Andre Solaris, banging
the beats like only he can, unlocked Rikler's brain to a whole other
universe of both music and mixing. Instantly a huge fan, Rikler began
attending Fuel promoted events. The overwhelming experience at these
events drastically changed his perception on mixing style and song
selection. Along with his djing partner, Jaysen Infamus, Rikler convinced
the owner of the bar to somewhat change the format on Thursday nights
to incorporate an underground feel. Needless to say, shortly after
the format change, Thursday's became the busiest and most profitable
night of the week for the bar. He knew he was onto something. Rikler
finally introduced himself to both Andre and Nosmo at a gig the two
of them were playing. A friendship quickly evolved since the three
shared the same passion for proper clubbing, while altogether drinking
more alcohol than any human should. Soon after, Rikler was offered
an opening set for Departures. The dream was quickly becoming a reality.
Along with the steady residency Rikler held at his founding nightspot,
he was offered to make appearances at many different events throughout
Chicagoland. He has had the great pleasure of sharing the decks with
Chicago's top talent such as Chris Gin, Dmitry Lovebone, Keith Lotta,
Paul G, Christopher Robin, Nosmo, and Andre Solaris. Some venues include
Cafe Lura, Big Wig, Borderline, Tooters, and numerous house parties.
Rikler was gaining a following, yet at the same time receiving the
occasional middle finger from people that wanted to hear "Diamond
Girl" or Nelly. Whether he has two people or two hundred people
feeling his vibe, he refuses to play any mainstream music. His focus
was, and is, to take the crowd on a journey with music that is light
years away from anything mainstream.
Two years after setting his first plate on a turntable, another change
was in order. Despite the success of Thursday nights, Rikler and Jaysen
Infamus were asked to leave. The owner's son, another resident, forced
the pair out by demanding the format be only mainstream music. By
this time, Rikler had his own equipment. He could still excel and
improve his talent without having to conform to the lower standards
set before him. Around this same time, he was being introduced into
the world of song production. Nosmo, Mcrae, and Ruin of Grayarea opened
their doors and gave Rikler an idea of what actually goes into making
a track. He quickly realized that it takes much more than simply pushing
buttons on a computer to produce something worth listening to.
Now, with a better understanding and respect for the art of mixing
and production, Rikler looks to the future like a child opening presents
on Christmas Day. He can't wait for the next time to move the crowd
with his selection of music. Every mix he shares with an audience
is unique. You can expect to never hear the same thing twice when
the decks are his own to manipulate for your listening pleasure. While
at the controls, Rikler takes his audience on a journey through break
beats, progressive house, tech, and trance. Influenced by such artists
as Grayarea, Stephanie K, John Creamer, Sasha, and Timo Maas, Rikler
is most definitely an up and coming dj to keep an ear out for, especially
with his most recent signing with the Fuel Promote crew.