Red Bull Elektropedia tells the incredible story of one of Belgium’s most iconic dance labels named Bonzai Records. To celebrate Bonzai’s 25th anniversary Red Bull Elektropedia teamed up with the people behind this legendary label to bring you an honest, no-nonsense one-hour documentary about how it all went down.
Christiaan “fly” Pieters founded Bonzai records in 1992 after he decided that being a waiter was not the way to go. At the early age of 12 Fly decided that he wanted to spend his time making music and making a difference. So after e few years he decided to open his own record store and it all grew from there. No one at that time could of predicted just how big Bonzai Records would become in the next few years. It started with a small recording studio inside the music shop and evolved to a 1 million dollar check from Sony Records and an icon clothing line. At a certain time in history the record label even sold more merchandising than music. In most clubs about 50% of the people wore something related to Bonzai Records, so Bonzai was definitely considered a ”hype” back then. Another great thing about the record label was that it released about 90% of the tracks that were produced by its artists. That was something unseen at that moment in time.
However, even though Bonzai Records introduced a new music genre, boomed across multiple countries and launched different, well-respected DJ’s it could not escape its destiny. Modern technologies such as Internet and illegal piracy brought Bonzai Records to its knees.
The documentary of Bonzai Records is definitely one worth watching. It contains a great storyline about the build en rise of a music-empire, but it also faces reality en talks about the downfall of the record label due to piracy and changing technologies, and, how people react on these changes. Personally I think that it was an extremely honest documentary and I absolutely loved the sometimes funny quotes such as the Porsche 911 story with the Backstreet boys.
I dedicate this article to Sandra Dierick from Sunshine Promotion for making it possible for me to go and watch the documentary at De Vooruit in Ghent. It was a very special night and I had a really good time!