Robert Strauss (A.K.A. Japhy Saatchi) is a Canadian-born producer, musician, recording engineer and DJ based in London, UK.
Robert is a vocalist, multi-instrumentalist, music producer, audio engineer, songwriter, DJ, and entertainer as well as owner of WAX Recording Studio in London, UK.
To date Robert’s artistic output includes seven singles, two solo albums and the debut album from Personal Life, Robert’s own creative output is primarily within the Soul / Jazz, Dance Disco & Funk genres. “As producer / engineer his work is far and wide (ranging in genre) from Classical to Hip Hop, Country, Reggae, Metal and so on.”… Read more
Initially signed to various development deals in Toronto by WEA and Hypnotic Records Robert’s music thus far has been primarily released on UK & European labels including: Expansion Records, Tokyo Dawn Records, BBE, Freerange, and Yoruba Records / Souljazz Records. His production work had also been featured on over 100 commercial releases such as Expansion Records: Soul Togetherness & Luxury Soul 2013, 2014 & 2015 Compilations, Dimitri From Paris’s Return To Playboy Mansion, Kenny Dope & Karisma’s Soul Heaven CD, Little Louis Vega’s Mad Styles & Crazy Visions 2, Joey Negro’s Lust and Soul and Osunlade’s Cinco Anos Despue (Five Years On)’
Early life (Canada)
Raised by artistic parents, Robert was influenced and encouraged by his mother, Angie (who is an oil painter), to develop his interest in music. From the age of five Robert played piano, guitar and drums without any formal training. Robert grew up in a small town called Niagara on the Lake, Ontario and was a local guitarist playing in a high school rock band. Eventually, he left the group at the age of 17 to pursue his career in music in Toronto.
Musician / Vocalist / Songwriter / Live Sound Engineer (Canada, USA)
Robert was working in Toronto at a guitar shop where he met music producers Peter Prilesnick & Matthew Dematteo and formed the rock band ‘Life’. They were signed to major label Warner Electra Atlantic / WEA, with Robert writing the material, singing and fronting the band. They were voted in the top 10 upcoming bands by Canadian Industry Journal ‘The Record’. They recorded two albums (unreleased by label) and then broke up.
Robert relocated to Seattle Washington, and formed ‘Children’, another rock group as the principal writer, vocalist and guitarist with Drummer John Wicks and Organist Joe Doria. ‘Children’ recorded a self produced album for Warner Electra Atlantic / WEA which was not picked up by a label.
Robert relocated back to Toronto, Canada and worked as sound engineer at The Cameron Public House, a well-known live music venue. Shortly after he opened a recording studio and was working with various Hip-Hop Artists including Saukrates, Colin Munroe and Brass Munk (EMI), while continuing to work as a sound engineer at various night clubs and theatres.
Music Producer / Film & TV Composer / Studio Engineer (Canada, UK)
In 2004 Robert’s first releases as an electronic & dance music producer started to appear in various genres including: House, Broken Beat, Techno, Hop Hop and Soul mainly on UK based record labels. His first full-length album Quasars & Phasars was picked up and released by Jimpster on Freerange Recordings.
In 2007, Robert’s second album Mr Feelings was released on BBE and featured collaborations with Leroy Burgess, Baatin of Slum Village, Saidah Baba Talibah, Richie Hennessey of Brass Munk, and Moka Only. Robert relocated to London, England and toured Europe in support of his second album
In 2009, Robert released the Odyssey Man EP on BBE and featured collaborations with Leroy Burgess, Richie Hennessey & Ayah. Robert relocated to London, England and toured Europe in support of his second album
Robert’s work as a dance, funk, hip hop and soul music producer has been licensed on numerous CD compilation and remixed by DJ Spinna, Joey Negro,Recloose, Yamwho? and many others.
Founder ‘WAX Recording Studio’ London (UK)
In 2010, Robert opened WAX Recording Studio in East London. Many well-known artists record there including: Odyssey, Paul Jackson, Xantoné Blacq, Ahmed Abdullah, Swing Out Sister, Antonio Sanchez, Omar Lye Fook, Ian Thomas (Drummer Michael Jackson, Dire Straits, Bob Dylan), Personal Life, D’Nell, Da Lata, Lyric L.
Music Director ‘Personal Life’ London (UK)
in 2010, Robert started to collaborate with vocalist Stuart Lisbie and formed: ‘Personal Life’ a 10-piece band featuring Stuart’s voice, Robert (Songwriter / Producer / Bass player) along with contributing with members from Amy Winehouse’s touring band: Xantoné Blacq (Keys), Nathan Allen (Drums), plus well known London based session musicians Max Grunhard (Sax), Scott Baylis (Trumpet & Flugelhorn), Anselmo Netto (Percussion), Anna Croad (Violin), Alex Barnes (Cello) and Frida ‘Mariama’ Touray (Backing Vocals) They had their first CD release on Expansion Records’ Luxury Soul 2013 compilation and their debut album to be released 8 July on UK’s Expansion Records and Germany’s Munich based label Tokyo Dawn Records. The band’s singles have been strongly supported by DJ’s in the UK as listed on the UK Soul Chart. Their song ‘Morning Light’ hit number three on the top thirty and stayed on the charts for several weeks. The debut album tracks were licensed on the CD compilations: Soul Togetherness (2013), Sounds Of Universal Love (2013), Luxury Soul (2013), Luxury Soul (2014, The Boogie Vol. 4 (2014), Mutants Vol. 2 (2014), Tony Minvielle Presents Into Somethin (Vol. One) 2015, Luxury Soul (2015), and collectors vinyl.
Personal Life were reader nominated as ‘UK Soul Artist of the Year’ alongside Incognito, Omar & The Brand New Heavies.
Current Projects London (UK)
In 2015 Robert co-produced an album for Columbia Records recording artist Andrew Roachford. In 2016 Robert co-produced an album for Tokyo Dawn Records recording artist Eneeks. In 2016 Robert produced singles for Japhy Saatchi, Goodfoot, James Sayer.
Touring and performance
2000 performed with various bands and as solo singer / songwriter / guitarist in Toronto, Canada (solo, songwriter period)
2005–2008 DJ’ed and toured internationally in various countries including: England, Russia, Belgium. Germany, France, Ireland, Greece, Canada as well as major UK events and festivals (DJ / Producer period)
2013–2014 performing in Europe and various clubs and festivals as Musical Director in Personal Life
In 2010, Robert opened WAX Recording Studio WAX Recording Studio in East London. Many well-known artists record there including: Odyssey, Paul Jackson, Omar, Xantoné Blacq, Ahmed Abdullah (Sun Ra), Rumours, Rejjie Snow, Swing Out Sister, Antonio Sanchez, Ian Thomas (Drummer Michael Jackson, Dire Straits, Bob Dylan), Personal Life, D’Nell, Da Lata, Lyric L.
He also has produced various albums & music for film and television under the banner of his commercial music company Strauss Commercial Creative including commercially available titles commissioned by Union Square Music.
Biography courtesy of Japhy Saatchi
00 – Ahmed Sirour – DJ Soulswede’s Theme
01 – Eneeks – Pillow Talk (feat. R. Strauss, D. Taylor, W. Francis, N. Bennett, N. Olivieri & DJ Agile) (EP, My Queen, My King, My God, 2017)
02 – Robert Strauss – Night Rhythm (feat. Miles Raine) (Mr Feelings, 2007)
03 – Mullaha & Japhy Saatchi – Touchy (Single, 2017)
04 – Robert Strauss – Spinning Inside Your Love (DJ Spinna Remix) (EP, Spinning Inside Your Love, 2005)
05 – Personal Life – I Remember (Morning Light, 2013)
06 – Robert Strauss – Close Your Eyes (feat. Saidah Baba Talibah) (Mr Feelings, 2007)
Background music during the interview:
Robert Strauss – Girl (Instrumental), Robert Strauss – Music Is My Life (Instrumental), Eneeks – I Am The Artist (feat. Jasmine London), Robert Strauss – Quija, Robert Strauss – What You Talkin’ About