Robert Strauss (musician)

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Robert Strauss
Robert Strauss 2007-2.jpg
Background information
Birth nameRobert Strauss
Also known asJaphy VanSanity
OriginToronto, Canada
GenresFunk, Soul, Hip Hop, House, Heavy Rock
Occupation(s)Producer, musician, vocalist, DJ
InstrumentsVocals, Demonboard, Bass & Electric Guitar, Keyboards, Keytar
Associated actsRobert Strauss (Artist), Personal Life (band), End of the Zen (band)

Robert Strauss (a.k.a. Japhy VanSanity) is a Canadian-born music producer, multi-instrumentalist, singer-songwriter, audio engineer (and one time international club DJ) based in London, UK where his studio WAX Recording Studio is based.[1]

To date Robert's artistic output includes 7 x EP's, 3 x solo albums and the debut album from Personal Life.[2] 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.".[3]

Initially signed to various major label development deals in Canada by Warner / Electra / Atlantic WEA and Hypnotic Records Robert's music thus far has been primarily released on UK & European labels including: BBE, Expansion Records, Tokyo Dawn Records, 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)'[4]

Discography (as Artist)[edit]


Singles and EPs[edit]

  • Japhy Saatchi / HOT ARTTT EP (2019) Instant Feel (Aztec Records)[7]
  • Odyssey Man EP (2009), BBE Records[6]
  • Feeling Fantasy EP (2007), BBE Records[6]
  • Spinning Inside Your Love EP (2005), Freerange Records[6]
  • The Empire Strikes Back EP (2005), Freerange Records[6]
  • Rhythm of Life EP (2005), Freerange Records[8]
  • Lotus & Strauss EP (2005), Souljazz Records[9]


Early life (Canada)[edit]

Raised by artistic parents, Robert was influenced and encouraged by his mother, Angie (who is an oil painter),[10][failed verification] 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 and getting occasionally studying with local guitar teacher / mentor Steve Kostyk.[11][12] Eventually, he left the group and his hometown roots at the age of 17 to pursue his career in music in Toronto.[13]

Live Sound Engineer to Major Label signing (Canada, USA)[edit]

Robert was working in Toronto at a guitar shop where he met music producers Peter Prilesnick and 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'[14] They recorded two albums (unreleased by label) and then broke up.[15]

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.[16]

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.[17]

Music Producer / Film & TV Composer / Studio Engineer (Canada, UK)[edit]

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.[18] His first full-length album Quasars & Phasars was picked up and released by Jimpster on Freerange Recordings.[19]

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.[20] Robert relocated to London, England and toured Europe in support of his second album[21]

In 2009, Robert released the Odyssey Man EP on BBE and featured collaborations with Leroy Burgess, Richie Hennessey and Ayah.[22] Robert relocated to London, England and toured Europe in support of his second album[21]

Robert's work as a dance, funk, hip hop and soul music producer has been licensed on numerous CD compilations[23] and remixed by DJ Spinna,[24] Joey Negro,[25] Recloose,[26] Yamwho?[26] and many others[27]

Founder 'WAX Recording Studio' London (UK)[edit]

In 2010, Robert opened WAX Recording Studio in East London.[28] Many well-known artists record there including: Odyssey, Paul Jackson, Xantoné Blacq, Sugarhill Gang, Ahmed Abdullah, Swing Out Sister, Antonio Sanchez, Omar Lye Fook,[29] Personal Life, D'Nell, Da Lata, Lyric L.[30]

Music Director 'Personal Life' London (UK)[edit]

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)[31] They had their first CD release on Expansion Records' Luxury Soul 2013 compilation.[32] and their debut album to be released 8 July on UK's Expansion Records and Germany's Munich based label Tokyo Dawn Records[33] 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.[34] The debut album tracks were licensed on the CD compilations: Soul Togetherness (2013),[35] Sounds Of Universal Love (2013),[35] Luxury Soul (2013),[35] Luxury Soul (2014,[35] The Boogie Vol. 4 (2014),[36] Mutants Vol. 2 (2014),[37] Tony Minvielle Presents Into Somethin (Vol. One) 2015,[38] Luxury Soul (2015),[39] and collectors vinyl.[40]

Personal Life were reader nominated as 'UK Soul Artist of the Year' alongside Incognito, Omar & The Brand New Heavies.[41]

Touring and performance[edit]

  • 2000 performed with various bands and as solo singer / songwriter / guitarist in Toronto, Canada (solo, songwriter period)[42]
  • 2005–2008 DJ'ed and toured internationally in various countries including: England, Russia, Belgium. Germany, France, Ireland,[43] Greece, Canada as well as major UK events and festivals[42](DJ / Producer period)
  • 2013–2014 performing in Europe and various clubs and festivals as Musical Director in Personal Life[44]


In 2010, Robert opened WAX Recording Studio WAX Recording Studio in East London.[19] Many well-known artists record there including: Odyssey, Paul Jackson, Omar, Sugar Hill Gang, Xantoné Blacq, Kwabs, Barns Courtney, Ahmed Abdullah,(Sun Ra), Andrew Roachford, Rejjie Snow, Swing Out Sister, Antonio Sanchez, Ian Thomas (Drummer), Personal Life, D'Nell, Da Lata, Lyric L.[45]

He also has produced music for 30+ albums and music for film and television under the banner of his commercial music company Strauss Commercial Creative[46] including commercially available titles commissioned by Union Square Music[47][48]

External links[edit]


  1. ^,,
  2. ^ All Music Guide + . Retrieved 2013-11-02
  3. ^ Robert Strauss – Bio, CDs and Vinyl at Discogs,and interview on soul Fusion Radio:" Retrieved 2013-11-02. Retrieved 2013-01-23
  4. ^ Retrieved 2015-09-15
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b c d e f Robert Strauss – Bio, CDs and Vinyl at Discogs. Retrieved 2015-09-15.
  7. ^ Retrieved 2018-21-18
  8. ^ Robert Strauss – Bio, CDs and Vinyl at Discogs. Retrieved 2011-10-10.
  9. ^ Robert Strauss – Bio, CDs and Vinyl at Discogs. Retrieved 2015-20-15.
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ 'The Record' Published in Canada Issue No. 83 Oct 1995
  15. ^}
  16. ^
  17. ^ Robert Strauss of 'Personal Life' interview
  18. ^ Robert Strauss – Bio, CDs and Vinyl at Discogs. Retrieved 1 October 2011.
  19. ^ All Music Guide Retrieved 2011-10-10.
  20. ^ BBE website listing Retrieved 2011-10-31.
  21. ^ a b Artist Myspace, Retrieved 2011-10-10
  22. ^ BBE website listing Retrieved 2013-11-02.
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^ a b
  27. ^
  28. ^ Company press release appearing Retrieved 2011-10-10
  29. ^ Retrieved 2017-04-21
  30. ^ Photos and text appearing on studio blog & website Retrieved 2014-03-03
  31. ^ Band bio: Retrieved 2011-10-10
  32. ^ Retrieved 2013-01-23
  33. ^ Band bio: Retrieved 2013-06-20
  34. ^ Retrieved 2013-01-23
  35. ^ a b c d
  36. ^[unreliable source?]
  37. ^[unreliable source?]
  38. ^
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^ Retrieved 2013-11-02
  42. ^ a b retrieved 20 September 2015
  43. ^
  44. ^ band website: Retrieved 2015-09-15
  45. ^ Photos and text appearing on studio blog, Retrieved 2018-12-21
  46. ^ listed company website at 'info' page Retrieved 2018-12-21
  47. ^
  48. ^ Listed in physical release Liner Notes Union Square Release Cat#'s DDMETR199, DDMETR205, DDMETR200. DDMETR204,SIMPLYCD083, SIMPLECD082, SIMPLYCD081, SIMPLECD082, SIMPLYCD252 Retrieved 2011-10-10