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Thievery Corporation is a Washington, D.C.marker-based recording artist and DJ duo consisting of Rob Garza, Eric Hilton, and their supporting artists. Their music style mixes elements of dub, acid jazz, reggae, Indian classical, Middle Eastern, and Brazilian (such as bossa nova) with a lounge aesthetic.


Thievery Corporation was formed in the summer of 1995 at Washington DC's Eighteenth Street Lounge. Rob Garza and Lounge co-owner Eric Hilton were drawn together over their mutual love of club life, as well as dub, bossa nova and jazz records. They decided to see what would come of mixing all these in a recording studio, and from this, the duo started their Eighteenth Street Lounge Music record label.

The duo drew attention with their first two 12" offerings, "Shaolin Satellite" and "2001: a Spliff Odyssey" and with their 1997 debut LP, Sounds from the Thievery Hi-Fi.

In 2002 they released The Richest Man in Babylon on their ESL label. This fifteen track album is similar in sound and timbre to their earlier 2000 release, The Mirror Conspiracy, and features performances by vocalists Emilíana Torrini, Pam Bricker, and Loulou.

In 2005 they released The Cosmic Game, which has a darker, more psychedelic sound than The Richest Man in Babylon. The album also featured more high-profile guest singers on it, including Perry Farrell, David Byrne, and Wayne Coyne of The Flaming Lips.

In 2006 the group released Versions, a selection of remixes done by Thievery Corporation for other artists. They toured around the United States, playing at Lollapalooza. The tour was photographed by Rob Myers, Thievery Corporation's sitar and guitar player, in the Blurb photo book Thievery Corporation 2006.

The group released their fifth studio album, Radio Retaliation, on September 23, 2008. It was nominated for the Grammy for best recording package. Thievery Corporation's tour started out with 5 consecutive sold out shows at the 9:30 Clubmarker in Washington, DC.

The language of the group's lyrics throughout their career include English, Spanish, French, Persian, Portuguese, Romanian and Hindi. This reflects the group's world music influences.

They were the opening act on August 1, 2009 for Sir Paul McCartney at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland.


Thievery Corporation has taken progressive political stances on various issues, opposing war and exploitative trade agreements, while supporting human rights and food programs. Tracks such as "Amerimacka" and "Revolution Solution" from their album The Cosmic Game and Richest Man in Babylon from the album of the same title reveal the group's opposition to the positions and initiatives of former president George W. Bush's administration.

In September 2005, the group participated in the Operation Ceasefire concert, with the objective of ending the Iraq War.

From their press release regarding their album Radio Retaliation Garza said:

Radio Retaliation is definitely a more overt political statement [...] There's no excuse for not speaking out at this point, with the suspension of habeas corpus, outsourced torture, illegal wars of aggression, fuel, food, and economic crises. It's hard to close your eyes and sleep while the world is burning around you. If you are an artist, this is the most essential time to speak up."

Thievery Corporation are vocal advocates for the World Food Programme, seeing hunger as "...something basic, really elemental, that transcends boundaries around the world."

At Lollapalooza 2009, with some of America's largest bank's skyscrapers towering in the background, the group spoke out against the IMFmarker after playing the politically charged song "Vampires".

Use in media



Singles and EPs

  • 2001: A Spliff Odyssey (1996)
  • Dub Plate, Vol. 1 (1996)
  • The Foundation (1996)
  • Lebanese Blonde (1998)
  • DC 3000 (1999)
  • It Takes a Thief (1999)
  • Focus on Sight (2000)
  • Bossa Per Due (2001)
  • Revolution Solution
  • Warning Shots
  • The Heart's a Lonely Hunter
  • Sol Tapado
  • The Richest Man in Babylon
  • The Lagos Communique
  • Halfway Around the World
  • Incident at Gate 7
  • Encounter in Bahia
  • ESL Dubplate
  • Shaolin Satellite
  • Chaplin Swankster
  • Originality
  • Supreme Illusion (2007) - Cover designed by Nikolas Schiller


  • Dubbed Out in DC (1997)
  • Abductions and Reconstructions (1999)
  • DJ-Kicks: Thievery Corporation (1999)
  • Departures (2000)
  • "CloudWatch : A Soundtrack to a Freeform Gathering V2"(2000)
  • Sounds from the Verve Hi-Fi (2001)
  • The Outernational Sound (2004)
  • Babylon Rewound (2004)
  • Frequent Flyer: Kingston Jamaica (2005)
  • Changed To Lo-Fi (2006)
  • Warning Shots: Digibox Set (2007)

External links



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