It is with profound sorrow that Ibiza Voice announces that our much-loved founder, friend, boss, and inspiration Samuel Guetta passed away yesterday, 19 July 2012.
Our thoughts are first and foremost with Samuel’s family, especially his wife, daughter and son. Samuel was a fiercely devoted, adoring father. His children were his treasure. We are humbled by their loss.
Samuel’s unexpected death has left his friends around the world stunned and heartbroken. There are so many things we want to say and no words adequate to the task. Samuel was a true original: one of the most charismatic, passionate, excitable, energetic, endearing, infuriating, inimitable human beings we ever had the privilege to know. He adored drama. “Hype, lies and gossip” wasn’t just a tagline: it was a way of life. He always had a line on the coolest parties, the sexiest girls, and the most outrageous stories. Samuel was a walking exclamation mark who whirled through rooms trailing cigarette smoke and superlatives. It could drive you crazy. He had a fiery temper and argued as hard as he partied but he was so charming that even when you were furious you couldn’t stay mad at him.
Samuel was an icon in the electronic music scene: one of its great talent spotters and an influential promoter and provocateur. From the moment he met his destiny on the dancefloor during the Summer of Love in 1988 Samuel was devoted to the notion that music matters. One of his rarest qualities was that through the years he never, ever lost that spark. Make no mistake: Samuel relished playing politics and gleefully worked his insider status but everything he did was driven by love. He truly believed in the power of music to elevate and unite people. After some years in Los Angeles, and a few more in his native Paris, Samuel arrived in Ibiza, where he founded a DJ agency then began managing Space’s worldwide tours. Among his many achievements he helped make the Freak ‘n’ Chic crew including Dan Ghenacia and Dyed Soundorom into household names. Then he transformed cult hero Luciano into the world’s hottest DJ and created Vagabundos – the party that turned Cadenza from a niche record label into Ibiza’s most outré extravaganza. Most recently, Samuel founded Unnecessary booking and management agency working with stellar talent in London, Brazil and Paris.
For those of us fortunate enough to be a part of it, though, Ibiza Voice is Samuel’s greatest achievement. He, along with co-founder and best friend Jean Louis, redefined dance music media with Ibiza Voice’s notorious irreverence. “Hype, lies and gossip” was pure Samuel. He was never afraid to speak truth to power. Thanks to him Ibiza Voice was the scourge of bullshit. We were urged to expose every scandal, dish all the dirt, and take on anyone who got too big for their boots. It is difficult to contemplate a future without Samuel. We do so with intense sorrow, and the desire to carry on his legacy. Jean Louis says simply: “I have lost my beloved brother but I do not want all he has done to go into oblivion. I will fight with all my energy to keep Ibiza Voice running for his memory.”
Samuel meant so much to us and changed so many of our lives. It is heart-breaking to realise we’ll never hear his voice again, or be able to give him a hug. We’ll miss him more than words can say but, with typical generosity, he left us a great gift: the example of a life well and truly lived to the hilt. Most people compromise; Samuel never did.
Rest in peace, Samuel. We love you xx