For more than one and a half decades, ten studio albums so far and countless 12 inches and remixes, Jean F. Cochois a.k.a. The Timewriter, has established himself as one of the most internationally respected writer/producers of his musical genre and considered one of the founding members of Tech House.
If one follows Jean F’s productions over the past twelve years, one will not only notice the substantial and continuous development of his musical idea, but also more importantly, his very own distinctive and immediately recognisable style. This includes his way of producing and the tremendous feel for sound, melody and rhythm. In combination with his musicality and the emotional content in his work, he keeps on setting the highest of standards that one has grown so used to hearing from him.
Since Jean F Cochois’ childhood, growing up in a music-loving home, soul artists such as Otis Redding, Bobby Womack, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Al Green and Bill Withers shaped his taste and count as his first musical influences, continuing to be his heroes today.
During the Break dance scene of the mid-80’s, he invested his pocket money in records from Grandmaster Flash, Whodini, West Street Mob, Junzon Crew, Newcleus through to Herbie Hancock. Other early influences include Depeche Mode (favourite album “Construction Time Again”), Tears for Fears, Thomas Dolby, Ultravox, The Human League, Gary Numan, Laurie Anderson, Fisher Z, Vangelis, Alan Parsons; the list continues. Further important inspiration was brought to him by Roxy Music (Bryan Ferry) and Marillion (Fish), both of which moved him melancholically and giving the depth we know in his own songs.
During his years attending a boarding school specialising in music, this also being where his love for classical music evolved, he practiced with friends in the school cellar using home-made effect boxes, synthesisers and drumkits. It’s the time when Electronic Body Music is at its peak and after having played a few gigs in various local clubs with his band, he decided to join the group Brigade Werther in 1988. The following two years they supported acts such as Frontline Assembly and Psyche on their nation-wide tours.
The focus of the group later shifted to multimedia theatre productions and subsequently enjoyed three successful productions in the “Freien Theaterhaus Frankfurt”; Frank Cochois taking musical responsibility. Press and audience are equally captivated by the whole event. Nonetheless, the group members decide to go their separate ways in 1992.
Between 1993 and 1994, Jean F’s first listening-album “The Timerewinder” is written and completed, albeit it would take until 1997 to appear on the market under the pseudonym JFC on Mole Listening Pearls.
In 1994 he starts working on his first house productions. After being introduced to the Plastic City label in the same year, The Timewriter’s story begins.
After his first 12 inches “Soul Strut Vol 1”, “Did My Time” and “Smashing Friendship” released in 1995 and 1996 respectively, the debut album “Letters from the Jester” arrived in 1997. Retrospectively this album is a clear landmark as far as his style is concerned. The continuity in all his LPs; the intros and interludes, the choice of song and album titles, the running theme throughout any creation, all show his high demand on quality, musicality and depth.
Basic ingredients to Cochois’ songs are a combination of Detroit-inspired grooves with a strong essence of soul-driven sounds and vocals.
Releasing his second album “Jigsaw Pieces” in 1998, a timeless universally-felt classic, he turns these claims into perfection and produces an album with songs unheard of before.
Whilst the German scene was not ready to embrace the new-born sound, English and American press was on the other hand totally enthusiastic. According to England’s “Muzic Magazine – “this is the real 21st century soul music, avoid of clichés, overflowing with magic..”
Not only as a producer, but also as DJ and remixer, Jean F. Cochois enjoys the respect he receives internationally. Amongst his remixes include artists such as the ex-Kraftwerk member Wolfgang Flür (Yamo), Mike Oldfield, Yello, Faithless, Boy George etc.
As a DJ, The Timewriter held a residency in Sven Väth’s Cocoon Club and tours the world. On a regular basis he presents his own DJ Mix CD Series, Deep Train“.