Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Ultra Fun. Ultra Excited. Ultra amped!

Hours before the music festival opened for the day, I felt absolutely terrified yet so thrilled to be in a different state just to go see my favorite DJs. I had always wanted to make it a goal to catch shows in different cities other than my own, so heck ... Let's go to the Ultra Music Festival in Florida!

As rough as Friday morning was, my team of friends were smart. We all brought vitamins, nutrients and shakes to make sure none of us fall behind on energy... And then we went out for Cuban food. Lol! Hey now, we're in Miami.

With the help of apps from UMF and GroupMe, all of us planned out what DJ's each of us wanted to see on Day One, who was separating from the group and where to meet. I would like to say we did quite well for day one! As soon as we got to Biscayne ... Good mother of glory! I heard music! I see decorations! I see candy ravers and tutus oh my! Walking around this beast of a festi was absolutely insane.

Kicking off things by walking around the entire park, DJ's I was able to catch were:
The Chainsmokers
Major Lazer
Eric Prydz
Art Department
Tiesto (OF COURSE!)

I was able to go to the underground stage - but I can't remember all of the DJ's names! It was such a good time at every single area. By the end of the night, we walked over to find the next after party - so we ended up at Space and behold! Kyle Shaw, who has designed my "I Know Reflecta" logo shows up! I haven't seen him in about two years and it was really cool that I got to meet the guys with him, Plastik Funk.

The very next day, my body hated me. I haven't danced nor jumped around so much in my life for two days straight and hours on end! Glad I wore my sneakers out but .... lesson learned, get insoles! 

Let's help keep Ultra Miami! 

Road Trip to Coachella

About a year ago, I saw the Coachella tickets go on sale and without knowing the line up ... I just had to get two tickets to go. I didn't know who I wanted to take with me, I didn't know where I was going to stay ... I just dropped my credit card and said, "I'm going." Thankfully, I was able to go to week one of Coachella! OMG. It was balls to the walls all sorts of amazing! 

I got to Palm Springs a day early to settle in and get some rest ... Yeah, that didn't happen! I took two friends with me on the drive up to Palm Springs and thanks to Audio 1's music selection - it helped make the trip exciting and quick. Well, not so quick, we had about six hours to go on the road. With barely two hours of sleep, we muscled through the day and still went to a pool party at night. How exciting it was to be in a different city again, miles and miles away from home! 

Driving to Coachella wasn't so bad! We had stayed at the Two Bunch Palms and it was only about 20 to 30 minutes away. Parking was free but walking to the festival in that heat, oh my goodness, thank goodness for sunscreen and bringing a chilled water bottle! Finally being able to pass security and into the park, my first reaction was... WHOA! I AM HERE. I AM ..... OMG SHIT FUCK...GOT DAMN ... I'M HERE!!!! (My apologies for the vulgar remarks, but that's exactly how I felt)

Through out the day, my friends and I had all different tastes in music, so splitting up through out the entire day was a must. Here are the artists I got to see: 

Day One 
Deorro - Finally! My first time seeing him perform! His set melted my face!  
Gareth Emery
Duke Dumont 
The Glitch Mob 
Hot Since 82 
Outkast - I must have expected too much from them because of listening to them as a child, growing up and really enjoying all their hits. By the time they went on, I felt like my attention wasn't grabbed enough. 

Day Two 
Cage The Elephant 
Chvrches - I literally laid on God's green grass to listen to them, it was such an amazing experience! I loved their performance, think I found myself a new favorite band! 
Kid Cudi - Blew me out of the water! I haven't listened to him very much, but after seeing his stage pressence and interaction with the crowd, I definitely became a fan! 
Capital Cities 
Nicole Moudaber 
RL Grime 
Lorde - She sounds the same on stage! 
Fatboy Slim 
The Magician 
Galantis - My first time seeing them, wow, they blew my face off! I really liked that they had the big cat behind them with a screen.  
Empire of the Sun 
Pharrell Williams - I got to see the big hat! WOW! He even brought Gwen Stefani on stage! 
Nas - I don't really like rap all that much, but as soon as he got on stage, DAMN! He brought out PDiddy and JayZ! Played a lot of songs that were familiar to me and I'll have to say, it had awaken a part of my hip hop side again as a DJ. 

Day Three 
Rudimental - My first time hearing them and what an amazing stage pressence they all had! Played familiar songs that had it's own twist and who was the chic in the blonde with braids? Who was the chic with the braids in a brown leather skirt? They were AMAZING! 
Calvin Harris 
Lana Del Rey - Sorry, Lana ... I only stayed for 15 min... You made me sleepy. 
John Newman - Damn it! I only saw him jump on Rudimental's time. I will catch him some day! 
Disclosure - OMG. My new favorite! 

Week one of Coachella was so much fun and three straight days of it was well worth the exhaustion on the way back home!

Lessons learned from this trip.... 

A) Bring a plastic water bottle or camel back (They have water stations! But the website said no metal, so I didn't get to bring my "I Know Reflecta" water bottle). 
B) Bring a handkerchief all three days - so much dust and dirt! What I thought was a nice tan was actually just dirt on my skin. Lol! Don't forget to bring wipes! 
C) Wear comfy shoes - I bought cheap sneakers from Target and it didn't have any cushion, my feet were hurting! 
D) Go naked - Just kidding! It was super hot all three days, but super cold at night. Wear something light but also bring a sweater. Get your merchandise early! By the time I got my Coachella sweater the second day, they didn't have my size in the sweater I originally wanted (sad face) Bring a little picnic blanket or something to sit on too, something about sitting on the ground felt amazing.... But wearing a light colored pair of shorts, yeah not so sexy. 
E) Going sober wasn't so bad! Just being in the festival with a big smile on my face the entire day was enough! I knew that in the heat, my body wouldn't make it through the day so I stayed Sober Sally until about 8pm - I had my first, couple... ok... a FEW beers as soon as the sun went down. I listened to my body and it said, "No no for you until it starts getting cooler." 

I will be posting pictures of my Coachella trip on my Instagram! Add me @reflecta 
Also, if you received my BLUE "I Know Reflecta" sunglasses I was passing out, please tag me! Would love to see where they have been taken! Use the #iknowreflecta 

Can't wait to go back to Coachella in 2015! 

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Miami is One Hell of a Beast

These last few days have been insanely intense. Five days in Florida, Three straight days at Ultra, exploring Miami's after parties and staying musically inspired by most of the biggest names in dance music history! 

Leaving the West Coast was a first for me - I was absolutely terrified for such a long flight, so good music and a nap is what I needed to reset between time zones. Upon landing, my friends were ready to rage. We kicked off by checking out the Dirty Bird party and met some amazing DJs! I gave away my "I Know Reflecta" glasses and I can't wait to show you on my Instagram! Click to add me as your new Instagram mate! 

 I also met up with some friends at Nikki Beach. EDX threw down a hard set,  F_____ didn't hold back and Robbie Rivera was amazing! As soon as I left the sandy dance floor,Bad Boy Bill was hanging out by the stage. Controlling my inner fan girl I just had to meet him! Luckily I had one more pair of sunglasses to pass on and was actually nervous to hand it to him. 

Wrapping up the end of the night, I was able to catch up with fellow DJ and Producer Ron Reeser along with his friend from ______ LA SCHOOL. Fun guys! Inside of Nikki Beach, Tony Arzadon from Skam Artist banged out such a dope set! 

Stay Tuned for my next blog! I'll be sharing how amazing Ultra had been for THREE STRAIGHT DAYS! 

Let's help keep Ultra Miami! 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Rebranding, Renewing and Narrowing Down

We have heard the term, "A Brand New Me, A Brand New Year." For many, this means going beast mode in the gym or even transforming from asshole to angel in a blink of an eye. As for, "Reflecta," 2014 meant rebranding, renewing and narrowing down. I've realized that living in the now never got me anywhere and there were somethings that I have yet to finish pursuing!

When I made the decision just to go fully Progressive and Electro, I knew that I was going to take a hit. I have been an open format DJ for so long, that I was literally labeled as Hip Hop/Top 40 for years on end. To the EDM scene, I am unknown to them - so it feels as if I am starting over. Everyone thinks I am new and it's totally fun for me!  It's as if I'm starting as a brand new person - but taking my name with me will definitely have it's perks and drawbacks all at the same time.

I have finally opened up to just using plain CDs again (for the sake of being super easy when it comes to transitioning from DJ to DJ), using USB's, learning Rekordbox, Ableton and finally - mixing in key. I have made an exception to the limited Top 40 sets I will be holding on to since some promoters and clubs have been with me since the dawn of time. Gigs like those I will still be using Serato with either turntables or cdjs.

January kicked off with such wonderful opportunities to rock the main stage! I played at Temple (San Francisco), Glow Island (a music festival on Treasure Island), Supperclub, Slide and Zen. It felt so wonderful to see those that did catch the, "I Know DJ Reflecta" sunglasses wearing them at my gigs. I can't wait to print out more sunglasses for the next music festival I will be at, Electric Island.

The rest of 2014 looks definitely promising and I hope to tackle all the things on my Wish List this year! Of course I had kicked off by entering a couple of DJ competitions online, vote for me on Burn by clicking HERE .

See you all at my next gig! 

Gigs Coming Up .... 
February 14th - Temple, San Francisco, CA  
March 14th - Supper Club, San Francisco, CA 
March 21st - Opel, Mountain View, CA 

Click on the Venue/City for ticket information!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Mixing on Camera?! ME?!

Days on end, I'm notorious for locking myself up in my room to practice new tricks, explore new effects and just hammer out a mix to take for the road. I rarely let anyone listen to me just going at it for hours at a time because I always want my mixes to be perfect ... then a full moon happens and BOOYAH! Forget it! I'm blasting my mix, yeah there's some imperfections, but oh well! LOL!

Recently, I had been offered a weekly Wednesday slot at Spun DJ Studios to play on their U Stream channel - to let my creativity reign and just have fun with it. As soon as I dropped my first track, it felt as if I was breathing again. The door was shut and it was just me ... playing with this amazing amazing sound. It was definitely my "zen" moment to just play what I want, expressing my feelings over the speakers without saying a word. I like to consider myself as an emotional DJ, I have to mirror someone's emotion or give my emotion to my crowd - however which way I can explain it, it's how I got my name, Reflecta! Wednesday night, the only emotion I can feel is my own ... Something I haven't done in a while yet so relaxing to get lost in.

I absolutely loved loved loved those that logged in from out of town! Although I'm not in a dark room on stage, I have to realize ... OMG I'M LIP SYNCING and the lights are on! Good lawd! I always sing along with the tracks I play but sometimes someone will drop in and I'm like .. OMG!!! MY LIPS ARE MOVING!!! HAHAHAHHA! Then I think, WAIT! I'm on the internet! Oh well, that's just me when I mix. I've been told that my nose twitches, I bite my lip or I'm just singing along the whole damn time... Literally watched myself and thought, "It's TRUE!!!"

Definitely looking forward to many many Wednesdays to come! Hang tight, I'll be adding more stuff to the show with Spun DJ Studios!

Here are the links to my two nights so far ...
I Know DJ Reflecta at Spun Studios 1 
I Know DJ Reflecta at Spun Studios 2

See you all at my next show!

October 31st - "Wompoween" at The Metro in Oakland, CA
November 9th - Region in San Francisco, CA
November 29th - "Wompsgiving" at The Metro in Oakland, CA
December 20th - Ruby Skye's 4Fourteen in San Francisco, CA
December 21st - Zen in Mountain View, CA
December 31st - New Years Eve at Regions in San Francisco, CA

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Exciting October Gigs!!!

WOW! I'm so excited for the gigs coming up this month! I am excited to announce that I will FINALLY be spinning with Tina T (my ULTIMATE FAVORITE CHIC DJ) at Motif in Downtown San Jose. I'm super dee duper, uber excited to finally be able to spin for WOMPOWEEN! OMG... I've been waiting for these two gigs for a really long time, the nerves, the sweat, the excitement is surfacing and I can't seem to contain myself! 

I will be canceling my future gym work outs and boring candlelit dinner dates for this matter - time to get my music ready! Who knows, I might even rip a few mixes to pass out 8) Cheers! 

Email me to get on guest list via "iknowdjreflecta@yahoo.com" 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Reflecta spins for ... an 18 and over!

Prepping for an 18 and over night was a little stressful. I was constantly switching between FM and XM radio to make sure all the popular songs are downloaded, observing other DJ's that played for these events and even locked myself in my room to practice a bit before the gig at Fuz San Jose. In all honestly - I have not played for an 18 and over night in quite a long time and I was absolutely nervous, time has evolved since I was that age. What made me even more nervous - the owner of Knight Sounds was there! OMG! Many moons ago (when I was 15) my parents used to drop me off at Knight Sounds to go record shopping because they knew I would be digging through crates for three hours at a time ... When I saw him, I thought, "Ok Reflecta - Bring the PARRRTAYY!!" 

10pm hit and my four hour set was already in my head. Started with funky house, then took it up to the familiar Top 40 from 2010 until today. Through out the night, I played Electro House, Hip Hop, attempted to play Trap for a short set and then took it back up to all things EDM/ Top 40. I definitely kept my crowd! The most difficult part of the night was taking it Hip Hop - I haven't been playing it as much because I don't understand half the songs that are out there now... I don't even know what "rolled up to the scene with my ceiling missing," even means! Is it a car with no top? What scene are they going to? And WTF does it mean when "bands a make her dance?" Obviously, I don't get to play that as much anymore but when I do - goodness, I'm literally in my head thinking, "How does that song go? The one that goes err day err day yolo whats up and that one song ... we out here trying to function, function...." I will literally draw a blank - but I some how do a good job at covering it up by other song selections until I remember. Lol

By the end of the night, the biggest compliment I've heard was, "Wow, you ARE a real DJ... Just did a four hour gig straight!" And that was from the owner of Knight Sounds! PHEW! OMG. A compliment from him meant so much because he's seen me evolve as a DJ.

Well, for those of you that came to Fuz San Jose, I hope you had a great time!