|Birth name||Todd Edward Imperatrice|
|Also known as|
|Born||December 9, 1972|
Bloomfield, New Jersey, U.S.
|Labels||Nervous, i!, Defected|
Todd Edward Imperatrice (born December 9, 1972), known professionally as Todd Edwards, is an American garage house record producer, DJ and singer from Bloomfield, New Jersey. He began producing primarily for New York's Nervous Records in the 1990s, including under aliases such as the Messenger and the Sample Choir. Edwards' music is known for its influence on the UK garage scene that developed in the United Kingdom in the mid-1990s.
Beginning with his 1993 single "Guide My Soul," Edwards became a chief inspiration for the speed garage genre.His work is known for his "innovative blend of rhythmic, cut-and-paste vocal samples, rubbery basslines, and slapping percussion," which showcased an intensive sampling and remixing technique in which vocals are chopped into micro-sized sections. His 1994 single "Saved My Life" became a club hit in the UK. In 1999, Nervous collected several of his productions on the compilation Todd Edwards' Nervous Tracks and i! Records released the LP Prima Edizione, collecting several more tracks from this era.
Edwards has remixed hundreds of artists, including Wildchild, St. Germain, Benjamin Diamond, Justice, Klaxons and Dimitri from Paris. Edwards has also collaborated with Daft Punk, co-producing and contributing vocals on the songs "Face to Face" (2001) and "Fragments of Time" (2013); the latter won him a Grammy Award for its inclusion on that year's winning album Random Access Memories .
Todd Edwards grew up in Bloomfield, New Jersey. His father was a carpet salesman while his mother was a receptionist at Lincoln Technical Institute. He started playing the piano at around 3 years old. Amongst his biggest influences were Prince, Neil Diamond, and Peter Brown.
Edwards began his musical career around 1992. He employs vocal reconstruction techniques to his songs, creating a unique vocal collage set to a four-on-the-floor beat. Marc "MK" Kinchen, who is primarily responsible for pioneering this technique, is one of Edwards's influences.
Edwards became a committed Christian in the 1990s after having negative experiences with religion in his youth.This is evident by recurring hidden messages found in his compositions, which often contain religious phrases.
In his early records, Todd Edwards was influenced by house music and grew into the UK garage and 2-step garage scene. Inspired by Todd Terry, MK, and experiences from his own trials and errors, Todd Edwards developed a unique sound of vocal sampling in place of musical instrument sampling on his tracks.In 1995, there was some talk developing about Edwards. His manager was approached by St. Germain, who asked Edwards to do a remix of his song, "Alabama Blues". Although Edwards has produced and remixed some great remixes in this time, he didn't begin to DJ until the early 2000s. He went out gradually landing more gigs in the UK, hoping to land a bigger one than the next. For an American native, Edwards was quick to gain underground popularity in Europe.
Edwards co-produced and performed vocals on the Daft Punk song "Face to Face" from the album Discovery . The song reached No. 1 on the Billboard Club chart in 2004. In 2006, Edwards sang on each track of the LP Odyssey, using multiple aliases on the album.
In 2012, Edwards released the EP I Want You Back made in collaboration with French producer Surkin.In April 2013, Edwards revealed that he had contributed to Daft Punk's album Random Access Memories ; he expressed that it was difficult keeping his involvement a secret. He provided vocals for and co-wrote the song "Fragments of Time", as well as providing additional production. Edwards went on to describe the sessions as life-changing, providing the final push for him to move from New Jersey to California.
In 2013, Edwards appeared alongside many other garage pioneers in a documentary exploring the legacy of UK garage, Rewind 4Ever: The History of UK Garage.
At the 2014 Grammy Awards, Random Access Memories won awards for Best Dance/Electronica Album as well as Album of the Year; Edward's contributions to "Fragments of Time" thus earned him his first Grammy.
Red Bull Music Academy teamed up with director Ralf Schmerberg to produce What Difference Does It Make: A Film About Making Music for its fifteenth anniversary. The film features Edwards sharing his thoughts and beliefs on the music industry.Edwards continues to produce and remix tracks today, with planned tours for the future. One of his projects is a vocal album featuring his own singing and co-produced by engineer Peter Franco. Edwards noted that Thomas Bangalter of Daft Punk convinced him to pursue such a project, and may oversee it.
In May 2021, Edwards's back catalogue was released on streaming services through Defected Records.
Edwards currently resides in Los Angeles. He has been in a romantic relationship since 2014.
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