In case you were living under a rock this past week, you’d know that Winter Music Conference/Miami Music Week/Ultra Music Festival just wrapped up, transforming Miami into the Mecca for EDM fans the world over. Mostly young raver kids though with no sense of real nostalgia, only false nostalgia. Silver lining, though, is that a ton of our favorite people in the whole world were there DJing, playing, and partying it up the whole week, so we asked some of them to come up with their Top 5 Highlights.
(Kraftwerk, photo by Hannah Rad)
Up next: Hannah Rad, program director for East Village Radio, DJ, layabout and all around hilarious and genuine woman. No, person. We’ve known Rad for years now, and with every passing day, her success (and her demeanor through it all) is inspiring.
It’s Tuesday morning-ish, and we (meaning I) have already been in our Manhattan office-place since 9:30am after catching a flight from Miami at 6am. There wasn’t a ton of sleep over the past weekend’s cram-packed schedule of rad things, and while many people sauntered around South Beach and spa pool parties, we decided to keep it close to Ultra Music Fest for most of our Miami Music Week(end). We learned two very important things: 1) rolling with a solid crew who has your back no matter what is key (shouts to Vida, Viv, Eddie and Laura) and 2) wearing the same neon tank top the entire 3 days is more than acceptable. (Although the fact that we still have it on right now may be considered a bit grimy.)
1. Yo, I played the fest - No seriously. It was a “so not cute” 12:30pm slot on Sunday afternoon and the crowd was mostly electro-zombies left over and still awake from a night of partying, but you find someone who wouldn’t want to throw that on their DJ resume and I’d call ‘em a liar. This year it was the Eco Village stage… next year, we’re shooting for main stage.
2. Kraftwerk live - Although severely under-attended, the German superheroes of electronic music commanded Ultra’s Live Stage on Friday night with nary more than the most minimalist of knob turns. Burning through all their staple songs, you could almost hear the guys saying, “Yes, ve know ve are amazing. Ve vill not mess up. Ve are better den you.” I’d bet beaucoup bucks that everyone in the small amphitheater crowd would agree with that statement.
3. Gui Boratto's patience - Hell, does he ever know how to build a song, let it almost peak, build some more, then never drop that vocal everyone is anticipating. We witnessed the Brazilian producer's closing night set direct from the stage and it was the best sounding bit of aural anxiety that makes us swoon with every flick of his faders.
4. Busy P shopping with his parents on South Beach - slightly off the beaten path of all things “Ultra-centric” but in taking a brief respite to catch a tan and gorge on Cuban food, we couldn’t help but feel so much oozing cuteness after catching this sight. One of the best and honest-to-goodness real moments we saw with our eyes.
5. Lil’ Jon - The hype-man spent near the entirety of Steve Aoki's set on stage with the long haired DJ. He was an asshole, and an affably lovable one at that, coaxing Aoki to stage dive when he didn't want to, spraying champagne like a madman and tossing full sheet cakes into the crowd. Kind of cool to see someone of his “caliber” get super stoked on something his homies wouldn't be caught dead around.