The best known face and sound in American drum and bass for over a decade belong to Brooklyn-based Dieselboy, aka Damian Higgins. Now an international icon in this volatile, UK-originated underground dance music movement, Dieselboy is the most in- demand American d&b DJ on the global club, festival and rave circuits on six continents.
Since the early '90s Dieselboy pioneered d&b in North America, first in Pittsburgh, then from Philadelphia, exploding in popularity during the first wave rave outbreak in the late '90s. His prized mix-tapes and mix CDs have been the gateway for countless loyal fans to the high energy, futuristic, science fiction vibe of d&b. Dieselboy's style is characterized by flawless execution and meticulous pulse quickening sequencing that create intensely personal, dramatic, cinematic experiences.
Dieselboy was the first d&b artist to chart a single on Billboard's dance chart with Invid in 2000. Invid became the first American track played at d&b legend Goldie's London club Metalheadz. America's best-selling d&b artist, Dieselboy was the first American to be voted into the UK-based Drum & Bass Arena Top 10 DJs online poll in 2004. In 2007, Dieselboy and Goldie tag-teamed in Russia at a festival attended by over 25,000 junglists, and co-headlined again at SXSW 2007 in Austin, Texas.
In 1998, Dieselboy tied with atmospheric d&b legend LTJ Bukem for "Best Drum & Bass DJ" at the Global DJ Mix Awards, the first time an American was nominated for the award.
Born in Florida in 1972 and raised in Colorado with two sisters by their single mom, young Damian Higgins played drums in his school marching band, and his hobbies included breakdancing, skateboarding, videogames, reading, film, and role-playing games. In his senior year of high school he DJed dances, fading between CDs, tape cassettes and a turntable.
As a University of Pittsburgh student, he threw house parties where he met two Carnegie Mellon University radio DJ's who taught him beat-matching at the station. He was soon playing regularly on their weekly 6-hour radio show. He used his Internet handle, Diesel, as his DJ name until he learned a local graffiti artist went by the same alias.
In 1994, on borrowed turntables, Dieselboy made a mix-tape called The Future Sound of Hardcore and offered it for $5 on rave-related Internet listservs, which led to East Coast bookings. In 1997, Nigel Richards, founder of 611 Records in Philadelphia, needed a roommate so Higgins moved to Philly, became the d&b buyer and designed T-shirts and logos for the store.
From 1998 to 2004, Dieselboy hosted "Platinum," a Thursday weekly party renowned as North America's premier d&b club night at Philly's Club Fluid.
In 2002, Dieselboy founded HUMAN, the d&b imprint of New York's dynamic electronic dance music label System Recordings which launched in 2000, boasting Dieselboy as its first artist. He remains its best-selling artist.
In 2003, globally-distributed DJ Magazine invited Dieselboy to create a mix showcasing American d&b entitled DJ World Series: D&B From the United States.
In 2006 Dieselboy presented The HUMAN Resource, a double-CD set for which producer/DJ crew Evol Intent of Atlanta created a mix of all HUMAN tracks, which debuted at #14 on the Billboard electronic album chart behind non-dance competition such as Gorillaz, Madonna, Goldfrapp, and a Disney remix CD.
Dieselboy has played metal concerts with Orgy and Disturbed, and was the only d&b artist invited by electronic rock superstar Moby for his national Area2 tour that also included David Bowie, Busta Rhymes, Blue Man Group, Tiesto, and Digweed. Dieselboy tagteamed with Andy C at the second U.S. Virgin Festival at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore in 2007, sharing the bill with Smashing Pumpkins, the Police, Beastie Boys, Wu-Tang Clan, Interpol, and Velvet Revolver.
Always keen to build alliances within the d&b community, Dieselboy has toured with other DJ's including Technical Itch & Decoder, DJ Rap, DJ Fresh, Bad Company UK, and Hive.
In 2000 Dieselboy united with two other North American d&b legends, AK1200 and DJ Dara to create a d&b super-tour, the Planet of the Drums. With MC Messinian who joined in 2001, the POTD moved d&b out of the siderooms and onto the main stages.
2008 marks the POTD's 9th tour, the longest running annual electronic dance music tour of any genre. Truly one of the world's great ambassadors of drum & bass, Dieselboy's much anticipated ninth mix CD, SUBSTANCE D, a maximum strength psychotropic audio- ceutical, is sure to be embraced by his ever-expanding youthful fan base. Catch Dieselboy on his SUBSTANCE D Tour with rotating HUMAN artists aka the Monsters of Jungle, including Evol Intent, Ewun, Gridlok and Infiltrata, this spring and summer.