The Scene

Summary:

On "the scene":where we are, what the future is looking like for raves, and how it has changed to get to this point

Where we are? If you want to get a two minute idea of what's happening, you can probably just examine online calendars. There are plenty of events that link up people with similar musical interests.

The roots of EDM culture seem to have sprung right from "original raves" from the late 80s/early 90s, but when you refer to the "rave scene" nowadays are you including events like Skills massives and EPR, or just talking about underground hardcore/dnb parties? Where "we" are depends on who "we" are and what "the rave scene" means.

What is the future? Well, if we could see that we'd all be rich...
If you're talking about the sounds and the "artistry" itself, get to know avant-garde classical/jazz music, "IDM" tunes, and world music. Also keep up with all the new sound technology that's coming out... I'm a bit of a hypocrite here - I'm hardly on the cutting edge of hardware/software... but from the intersection of technology, world culture, and musical avant-garde will spring the "future" of all music, including dance music...

The cutting edge of everything starts in the places that are rarely understood by the masses, and often the least heard. Eventually, some of these sounds will be dragged into the mainstream... for example, if you play some random dubstep from 4 years ago, many people who like dubstep today would think it sounds awful... but you can definitely hear the "roots" of it...

And going beyond just the sound aspect... visual accompaniment is becoming ubiquitous at parties.

The "next-generation" of performers probably will be armed with redundant computers, be able to mix hundreds of tracks in a 20 second span, engage with the audience directly in some manner, and control visualizations simultaneously.

But truthfully, who cares, as long as you can get your groove on? Just based on what I've read, I don't think party culture has really changed in the last 40 years. State/federal politics can definitely influence party experiences, but at least for this country, history suggests ebbs and flows, with increased demand for partying often followed up by some kind of mainstream catering to such demand. If the ABC cracks down on mainstream venues, more things will move underground, resulting in less regulation of "partying" - this may cause concern for the community, which can deal with the over-demand for partying by a) starting a witch hunt for underground activities or b) having the mainstream cater more to party-goers' demands. From what I've seen, the Bay Area is pretty open to party culture (along with being open to a whole bunch of other cultures too), so relative to other metropolitan areas, this place has an excellent future for partying (which includes raves).

One thing that is very interesting about the Bay Area is how early so many permitted venues close down... but this is likely because the communities have such strong networks of private partying options.

If anything, all of us probably feel more empowered, due to improved flow of information in the modern age, to throw our own parties or take more control over our personal experiences... especially if we don't like the way things are, since the resources to do so are more readily available to us than ever before... I'm talking about the Internet here...

On popularity: As raves become more mainstream and "cool" for kids to attend...

I'm no old school raver, but I think this already happened... maybe multiple times... http://www.coolworld.com/cyberfest2004/
Here's a 2000 article from a local paper discussing an earlier incarnation of Cyberfest... some of these topics look awfully familiar: http://www.metroactive.com/papers/metro ... -0029.html

This country is much touted for its diversity and known for its individualized consumerism/materialism, which makes unification very difficult... which is probably why ecstasy culture will always maintain some level of "coolness" because it represents an enhanced pathway to "solving" this whole systemic lack of spirituality/community. Or does it? : )

Was EDM ever in the American radio circuit (beyond some of the crossover sounds like Fatboy Slim, Chemical Brothers)? My guess is that this country as a whole has never bought into EDM as a real musical style, say compared to the UK. Do we have anything comparable to the Essential Mix? Even a "dance music" radio station can't get enough support to stay alive in the Bay Area.

I just don't think straight-up EDM as a musical form is that popular here... yet. It does gets mixed into the mainstream in some other fashion (Madonna, Britney Spears, Lady Gaga).

On technology: now its all laptops, free music and online flyers. it kind of takes away the exitement...

Unless we can rewind our years and go back to being 16 years old, can we really ever capture that feeling again? Just because it's "different" doesn't mean we didn't go through an experience similar to those who are just partying for the first time... at least that's how I'd see it.

You can certainly have your older technology if you'd like... there are a handful of people still spinning vinyl... mostly all technology is just a tool for efficiency (at what price of course) and you can choose to not use it if you'd like.

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