I loved nearly every second of it! As usual! :-D
Pink Saturday went off like a dream. We were back in our old spot out in front of BofA! Back where we belong! It was sweet, just knowing exactly how to set up. Start time was an hour earlier this year (as was the end time) so it stayed light for longer - not that it mattered much. :-)
The Pink Saturday crowd is one of my favorites. Everyone is so happy to be there! The Sisters really rock this party - it is a lot of work for a lot of people, but it always goes off!
I was really out of practice so I actually planned out a significant part of my set this year. It really helped, as the environment is somewhat chaotic and people are continually wanting to say hi, take my photo, make requests, etc etc all while I am spinning. I really love it when my friends come up and say hi! So it was nice to be able to look up and wave back. I saw SO MANY friends! That was awesome! Made me really happy.
A word about requests: A DJ is a person who plays recorded music in such a way that it sounds good together and creates a musical flow.
A jukebox is a machine which plays whatever you tell it to, if you put in money.
These are not the same thing. ;-)
I don't know what it is about playing "retro" music (I played disco and Jovino spun '80s) that makes people do this, but dag. Trust me! I has a plan! They usually want to hear something that is either way out of the tempo range I am in, or just completely not like what I am already playing... and then there are the ones who pull out a laundry list. If you say you don't have Track A, they will ask for something else... and if you don't have that, they will just keep going, like playing darts. At that point, they are just trying to get me to do *something* that they want. It's not bingo (or radio)! Just let me DJ! I promise you I will play something good. Although I *do* always listen to requests, because sometimes people have really good ideas. (Those are the ones I encourage to give it a try themselves.)
But seriously, if you do not personally know the DJ, the only question they generally want you to ask them is, "Can I get you something?"
Ahem. Where were we?
Oh yes, Pink Saturday. My opening set went by in a whirl and then Jovino came on and totally blew the roof off the place with his mad '80s Fu. People were loving it! The party really hotted up and he had a packed and pumping floor!
He played '80s new wave which was so much fun to dance to! I'm glad we brought the floor tiles for our little DJ booth. ;-) Then he went into a freestyle setlet that had them contorting on the dancefloor! Seriously, it was such fun to watch. People seem to ask for hip-hop every year, and I don't know whether there is a hip-hop stage or not, but I can tell you the breakdancers in the vicinity were blowing up out in front of his speakers. He was going over like mad!
I actually decided that I was just going to wait until he let me know he was done because people were loving it so much and he looked like he was loving dishing it up, so why get in the way of that?! Also, I get to open and close so I get more time. I used to do the whole 6 hours, which was awesome in its own way (but a lot of work too) and I love having Jovino spin. He's so good, he always gets them going!
So of course my "programming" flew out the window as I reworked my set to hit the essentials and still come in on time. He handed me a super packed dancefloor! Could I keep 'em?
I felt a certain amount of trepidation because we were switching gears, and I wanted to get everyone to cheer for Jovino so I let his track totally run out and yelled out, "Yeah! Give it up for Jovino!" and they all cheered!
I started off with Last Dance, and they cheered again! It's like 9:30 at night (but at least it's finally dark) so perhaps a bit early to pull that one out, but it totally worked. They even cheered at the start of my next two songs!
My set went well, although I did clear the floor. I got them back eventually! Seems like the more obscure disco actually worked better earlier. I think I have a strategy for next year. ;-)
There were a lot of young kids (like 20s) dancing to the disco! That was pretty rad. And of course, folks more my age, coming up to politely ask the name of a track or artist, and tell me how much a song meant to them. This is what I am trying to do with my Pink Saturday DJing - to bring the music that is the soundtrack to gay liberation. Overall, my closing set went over very well, and was a joy to spin. We are Family brought cheers (and the Sisters to the yard) and people grooved on Hold On to My Love and Hott Butterfly (Gregg Diamond/Luther Vandross version - no disrespect to Chaka, but that is The One) as well as There But for the Grace of God Go I and Love to Love You, Baby.
I split my set pretty evenly between dancy and sleaze... did about 45 mins of pure sleaze, with about 15 mins of denouement (let track run out, play downtempo track, let that run out, do two more that way). We attempted to record but there were glitches in both my parts, so what I think I'm going to do is work out a recorded set based on the Pink Saturday music and record it.
Also, music sounds SO good outdoors. What a joy that was!
We didn't have any other DJ gigs (I've had up to three over Pride weekend, which is fun and occasionally lucrative, but exhausting) so we were free to enjoy Pride freeform. Which is nice, because there sure are a lot of people there!
On Sunday, I woke up before Jovino did, so got on the computer to see what was going on in the world. Chatted with a friend and decided to meet up at our place and head over together. *That* is the way to do Pride! It's always better with a posse. We took BART over, enjoying the already festive mood as other people were clearly going where we were. When we got there, we visited the Faerie Freedom Village, and then walked up to the booth where our friend was volunteering. After that, we visited a tiki bar being run by friends supporting SFSI (San Francisco Sex Information) and then back to the FFV - it has been our home base at Pride for years now. I don't know that I'd be all that into going if we didn't have the Faerie Village.
I see the Faeries and the Sisters as very connected to the roots of Pride. We are fortunate to have them around!
Ran into a few friends and then that was enough. Back to Oakland. It was a good year!