Australian top DJ killed

MEGAN LEVY AND RACHEL OLDING
Last updated 12:41 01/03/2013
DJ Ajax

SORELY MISSED: Adrian Thomas, known as DJ Ajax.

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Tributes are pouring in for a well-known Australian DJ who has been killed in a collision with a truck in Melbourne.

Adrian Thomas, known as DJ Ajax, is believed to have run onto a road in Melbourne's inner north and was struck by a truck in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Police said a pedestrian was killed when he was struck by a truck in Parkville on February 28.

"It's believed the man ran in front of the north-bound truck on College Crescent shortly before 1am. He died at the scene," a Victoria Police spokeswoman said.

Thomas was one of the founding members of the Bang Gang crew, and has been voted among Australia's top five DJs in the inthemix 50 poll each year since 2005. He took out the number one spot in both 2006 and 2007.

In 2008 he launched his own record label, Sweat It Out, and regularly played the main stage at many of Australia's biggest music festivals, including Big Day Out and Parklife.

Duncan MacLennan, who was signed to Ajax's label Sweat It Out for two years, said the DJ pioneered electro music in Australia.

"Jaxxy was the spark that flipped Australian dance music on its head in the mid noughties," he said.

"The Bang Gang crew... attained a cult status previously unseen by a group of DJs."

MacLennan produced the song We No Speak Americano with Yolanda Be Cool on Ajax's label and it has since notched up nearly 9 million YouTube views.

"We sent Ajax our first rough," MacLennan said.

"He called us straight back - lads, this is going to be big. We didn't think so until he had said it, but we believed him. History will show just how accurate his finger on the pulse was. He was a music visionary, an unstoppable energy whose time was cut short. We will all be at a loss."

Tributes are pouring in for him on social media.

"RIP to Ajax, my thoughts are with all the Australian homies, I can't believe this. Such a warm and generous dude, a real leader," tweeted US DJ A-Trak.

"If you're a DJ and you ever toured Australia chances are you knew Ajax, he was like the ambassador. Much love to the Banggang homies."

Australian indie rock band Children Collide wrote: "DJ AJAX was one of the best guys I ever knew. He was respected and loved in all corners of the music world and will be forever missed. RIP buddy. Jx"

Sydney nightclub Chinese Laundry, where Thomas regularly performed as a DJ, wrote on Facebook that the news was "absolutely heart breaking".

"Ajax was resident at Chinese Laundry for over 7 years and was a great friend to everyone here & an amazing DJ that was always a crowd favourite," it wrote.

"You will be sorely missed by everyone who knew you and everyone at Chinese Laundry.

"RIP Buddy."

Another Bang Gang crew DJ, James Wirth, was already mourning the loss of his business partner, James Miller, the Sydney publican who was found dead at his Elizabeth Bay flat in January.

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- Sydney Morning Herald

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