Hope you all had a nice week. It is early afternoon in Seoul and I have just checked into my hotel after a crazy morning and a longsome flight from Miami. I stayed up most of Wednesday night finishing this week’s GDJB and then watching my favorite basketball team (The Phoenix Suns) play against the LA Lakers. They lost, I was not happy. My flight to Atlanta was at 8am, and then I was to connect for a long flight to Seoul (15 hours!).
I figured I would take my time getting to the airport since it was going to be a long day. Left the house at about 6:30am and got stuck in a bit of rush hour traffic heading to Miami International Airport. No stress yet. I am usually a pretty crafty driver when I need to be. Got to the airport at 7:10am. Went to the counter to get my boarding pass and they could not find me in the system… stress starting to kick in a bit. Maybe I should have left a bit earlier. After about 10 mins of them poking around in their computer they found my reservation… I was at the wrong airport!
I was supposed to fly out of Ft. Lauderdale airport. AAAGGGGHHHH!!! I made a few phone calls and got back into the car and raced north about 25 miles in the middle of Rush Hour traffic to Ft. Lauderdale. I was going 100mph, weaving in and out of traffic and basically just being a maniac. Just as I arrived at Ft. Lauderdale, Tim from my agency called to inform me that there was another flight at 9am that they managed to get me on.
So the lesson in all of this is to always be meticulously prepared when travelling. In many ways, the 15 hour flight turned out to be a blessing in disguise, as it gave me a chance to clear my head and de-stress, and to start focusing on the weekend ahead.
When I signed off last Friday I was preparing for my gig at Biel Center in Beirut. This turned out to be such an amazing gig. I did not know what to expect really, with it being my first visit to the country. Everybody was going crazy! It made me appreciate that they are able to keep up to date with Global DJ Broadcast each week through their local station. I played for 4 hours and had an amazing experience, the crowd did not let up the entire time.
My only regret is that I was unable to meet more people and spend more time taking pictures and signing autographs, security had a pretty good grip on me and whisked me out to my car pretty much right after my set. That is one of the things that has changed over the years. I am not able to hang out and party with people after my sets all the time anymore.
Once I got done I returned to my hotel room, turned on the laptop and managed to tune in to most of my Essential Mix as it was going out live on Radio 1. I have read all your comments on the forum and on Radio 1′s Essential Mix page, and I would like to thank each and every one of you for your kind words. It makes every last piece of effort worthwhile. I always appreciate the feedback that you give, and particularly the honesty of it. The Essential Mix was a big step to take, but I think we have taken it well together.
A few of you had already figured out before the broadcast, but I officially debuted my remix of the new Mike Foyle track entitled “Bittersweet Nightshade”, under his Statica alias. Mike sent me a demo of the original on the night of my residency debut at Ministry of Sound in London in July, and I was sitting in my hotel completely blown away by it. I was delighted to secure the track for Coldharbour, and even more delighted to accept the challenge of remixing it. The melody in particular just hits me every time I play it, and I am going to have a lot of fun playing out both versions live over the next while.
The good news for you all is, you don’t have very long to wait until Bittersweet Nightshade sees a release, as it hits the stores this coming Monday. It will bring the curtain down on Coldharbour Recordings in 2008, and I have been very proud of the progression we have made with both the main label and Red this year. We have plenty of great tracks already lined up for release in 2009, so the future already looks exciting.
After a couple of hours sleep I was on a plane to Amsterdam, and made a quick transfer to Jaarbeurs in Utrecht for the Essence Festival. It was the first time I had been in Utrecht since Trance Energy 2007. Great vibe as usual. The Dutchies know their music, so I gave them plenty of new and exclusive tunes and then ended with about 30 minutes worth of crowd pleasers. I had just enough time after my gig to get cleaned up and get back on a plane. This time back home to Miami. Needless to say, I slept the entire way!
At the beginning of the week, I commenced preparations for our year-end Classics Showcase. I love this time of year because we all do the same thing in our lives – we reflect and reminisce on past times. We remember the great moments and appreciate them, we remember the not so good moments and evaluate on what we could have done better, and after taking stock of everything, we look forward to the future.
Rather than replicate all the other music shows out there which celebrate by playing a “best of the current year”, I think it’s cool to look back and really dig out tracks that us dance enthusiasts are going to remember forever – tunes that are going to resonate deeply with a particular person for one reason or another.
Like previous years, the majority of tracks that make up this set will be determined by you, the fans. Everybody has that one track that holds a special meaning to them, and you have the opportunity to have your request played on the Classics Showcase. You are welcome to leave your wishlist over at the forums by Clicking Here, I will be checking every couple of days and adding tracks to my list. Then the process of sourcing them from vinyl will begin. If necessary, I might rework and reconstruct a track, like adding a bassline or crisper percussion for instance.
Tonight I am playing at Club Volume here in Seoul. I played here back in April and the atmosphere that night was incredible, definitely one of my favorite gigs of the year. I hope I have as much fun there tonight as I did back then. Tomorrow I travel to Shanghai in China to play at Club G Plus – the venue and city where the Global DJ Broadcast World Tour all began just over a year ago. Speaking of which, you can still vote for your favorite World Tour show of 2008 by Clicking Here.
Next week I will be checking in with you from London, ahead of another residency night at the amazing Ministry of Sound, and the next World Tour recording from Athens the following night.
Time to rest up before another weekend of fun begins again. I hope you enjoy yours whatever you are doing.