Where are you from and how has it shaped you?
Richard Melville Hall, a.k.a. Moby, is one of the most important dance music figures of the early '90s, helping bring the music to a mainstream audience both in England and in America.
Born in Harlem, New York in 1965, and raised in Darien, CT, he played in a hardcore punk band called the Vatican Commandos as a teenager before moving to New York City, where he began DJing in dance clubs. During the late '80s, he released a number of singles and EPs before, in 1991, he set the theme from David Lynch's television series Twin Peaks to an insistent, house-derived rhythm and titled the result "Go." The single became a surprise British hit single, climbing into the Top Ten, and was named one of Rolling Stone's top 200 records of all time. Moby, his first full-length album, appeared in 1992. Since then, Moby has recorded eleven studio albums, including his multi-platinum breakthrough Play (1999), 18 (2002), Hotel (2005), Go: The Very Best of Moby (2006) and Last Night (2008).
In addition to his musical endeavors, Moby is the proprietor of teany cafe and teas. He is also a well-known advocate for a variety of progressive causes, working with MoveOn.org and PETA, among others. He actively engages in nonpartisan activism.
Question: Where are you from and how has that shaped you?
Moby: Well, one of the things I am most grateful for is that I did grow up in a creative family. My mom, even though she did menial labor, she was a great painter and a really great musician. My uncle was a photographer, my other uncle was a sculptor, both my aunts are writers, my great-grandmother taught classical composition, my other grandmother was a watercolor painter, so everyone in my family had some sort of creative outlet, so it was just assumed that I would do something creative. Like I really think that my mother and the people in my family would have been very disappointed if I had decided to become a bond trader. So, if anything, even though I grew up in a very conservative suburban environment, I was always encouraged to do creative things.
Creativity runs deep in Moby's family.
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