Ok, so I like electronic dance music, more specifically Trance. Unfortunately, the US, it's let's just say... a bit behind in that department. If you ever hear such music on the radio, or even in the street, let me know (for instance, in Australia, I heard great Trance in even a waterslide park of all places, and in Europe you can easily get EDM/Trance on broadcast radio).
Since 2004 (it's not 2016), the good news is that Trance has grown quite a following in the US, and places like the SF Bay Area, and while Trance has been declared dead a few times in the last 10 years, it's still going strong here, and we're lucky to have at least one or two big Trance parties per year, so yeah!
With San Francisco and San Jose nearby, I've had some opportunities to see some great EDM/Trance DJs. Back in the early 2000's, they sadly played club music in the US that was nowhere close to the hits they had composed and were known for, but over the years, as Trance started becoming more popular, those DJs finally started playing their good tunes in the US too, and maybe from 2004 on, it's only been getting better.
Over time, I've seen many of my favorite DJs across the world, whether it was locally, in New York City, Canada, Australia, and of course Ibiza, and at Halloween 2004, I finally attended some great local parties that proved that you could get the good stuff locally too (even if all the artists came from other countries .
Over the years, I also got the chance to meet a few of my favourite DJs, including Armin more than once:
I elected to miss Dreamstate Socal last year to spend time with family, but I figured I'd give it a try this year.
I was totally not going to be driving to or from LA during thanksgiving. Flying southwest to a nearby Ontario airport was actually a decent option, but I elected to fly my own butt there and fly directly to San Bernandino's now defunct military airport, which therefore has a very nice long runway as well as a great FBO (folks in charge of transient traffic, parking and refueling).
From San Bernandino's airport, it was a short lyft ride to the crappy hotel I ended up at but was walking distance to the venue (I figured it would be better to avoid driving and parking issues even if in the end it wouldn't have been too much a problem).
I got a VIP ticket, so getting in wasn't too bad. I did get a puzzled security person when he saw all my electronics to run my shirt and pants, but in the end, he let me in nonetheless. The main issue was the poor information on where around the (big) block, the entrance was located. The first night, a lot of people (myself included) walked around for 15mn around in search of the entrance.
my shirt and pants worked fine those 2 days
Once in, they did a good job with the stages, albeit they were a bit small compared to the number of tickets sold. Even with a VIP ticket, I just couldn't get in an enclosed stage with limited capacity on the 2nd day.
The Lineup was solid...
the VIP area had a nice light tree
I think I fit right at home, there :)
they tried to sell me a new pair, but I was already equipped :)
DJ Tech equipment:
Pictures with people:
thankfully I wasn't the only person lit up, I found some 'colleagues' :)
Day #1 DJs:
Hi Armin! :)
hard to get pictures where you can actually see them :)
PvD was there to finish the night
almost rare to see him smile like this :)
Day #1 Video highlights:
After a good first night, I walked back to my crappy hotel (really motel quality) for some well deserved sleep and rest. I then came back the next day around 18:00 for round two: