photo by Jake West
I’ll have to admit. I talked a lot of smack about EDC Orlando prior to heading back to Tinker Field this year. As excited as I was to be representing Festival Squad at an Insomniac event, the festival itself didn’t have me pumped. EDC Orlando was a fun little weekend with some college friends last year; however, it definitely didn’t hit those festie feels. Leaving a little bit of a sour taste in my mouth, I never really spoke highly of the Orlando event…that is until now.
I woke up at around 6am Friday morning and headed into work at 7. After a very long week and an eight hour retail shift that morning, I just wanted to go home and sleep. I quickly started blasting JOYRYDE in my little apartment to try to get some blood flowing. It worked well enough to get me into some rave gear and into my car to start heading downtown. After sitting through the prime time of Orlando rush-hour traffic, I walked up to the festival gates only to discover a line so long that I felt a tear stream down my face (horribly sleep deprived, okay?). Bad vibes all around. I was that guy for a second. Thankfully it only took a few minutes of actually being inside of the festival to bite my tongue, regret everything I originally thought about EDC, and take back every swear word I said on the way there.
photo by aLIVE Coverage
I headed straight to kineticFIELD to get my first glimpse at the newest addition to EDC Orlando, Gaia, the Greek Goddess of Mother Earth. A 240 foot wide structure with 21 flames and 28 lasers completely taking over the sky. I don’t know if this was just pure exhaustion or if it was just that amazing, but I kept thinking in my head, “Am I still on earth? Like this can’t be real. This is another planet.” My man Slushii, Marshmello, Snails, and the Diplo B2B A-Trak absolutely crushed it Friday night. Saturday rolled around and my heart was set on one thing: JOYRYDE. While anxiously waiting for 7:30pm to come around, I spent the earlier part of Day 2 simply wandering around.
And this is where I’d like to take a commercial break and have a little PSA. First on the list: MEN. Do better. Please. Rave booties are out. They’re everywhere. They’re great. I know. This doesn’t mean respect is not necessary. The comments you make can seriously ruin a person’s time. “Oh, but baby girl it’s a free country. I can say that to you if I want. Plus, you can’t be wearing a number like that and expect me not to say anything,” is the easiest way to make me want to kick you where the sun doesn’t shine. Second on the list: cultural appropriation and flat out racism. Guys, it’s almost 2018. I think we all know what cultural appropriation is, and I sure hope we all know what racism is. It’s time to start taking these things into consideration when choosing our outfits. Leave the Indian headdresses at home and for the love of God, stop doing blackface!
Annnnd back to the good stuff…. like JOYRYDE. I had such an absolute blast at that set, and even got the guts to shuffle with some new friends. With my new-found courage, I found myself dancing for the rest of the final night of EDC in the neonGarden tent, and I’ve never been a happier and sweatier person.
photo by aLIVE Coverage
Overall, I was at such a loss of words for EDC. So much so, that I decided to go around and ask everyone else, “If you had to describe EDC in just one word, what would that word be?” Some of my favorite responses were:
To sum up my weekend at EDC in one word? Extraterrestrial.