Detroit techno and house hero, Kelli Hand, also known as K-Hand has died.
Reports circulating on social media this morning have confirmed that K-Hand has died. The cause of death remains unknown.
Tributes have poured in from friends and contemporaries such as Alan Oldham, Claude Young Jnr and DJ Rebekah.
Without a cause of death and no recently reported health concerns, the news has shocked the music community. K-Hand was officially recognised in 2017 as ‘The First Lady of Detroit’ when she was presented with the city’s Testimonial Resolution certificate, which applauded her “skills within a male-dominated industry.”
Despite the moniker, her impact was felt globally. Born and raised in Detroit she went on to become one of the most influential artists in dance music history, with a career spanning more than three decades.
An eclectic producer and DJ her music displayed an intrinsic mastery of rhythm and percussion, transcending and fusing genres effortlessly. K-Hand’s career collided with some of the most remarkable events in dance music. She started as a regular at the Paradise Garage and she’d soon line up alongside the likes of Frankie Knuckles, Ron Hardy and Ken Collier, who also booked her for a residency at Detroit club Zippers.
Her own label, Acacia Records, recently repressed Acacia EPs such as 1997’s Project 5 12-inch and uploaded many of her records onto Bandcamp, including a series of three Acacia Classics compilations.