By Rosanna Mallavo, Guest Writer
“UGH, why do you listen to this?” was a daily question I would bother my brother with whenever we’d ride in his car. It was always some weird techno that maybe had eight total words and just kept looping the same beats, over and over. and over again. But today was different; one particular track really caught my attention, “Boy Oh Boy” by GTA. Blending mesmerizing electronic beats with Missy Elliot’s “Work It”, it really opened my eyes to how diverse Electronic Dance Music could be.
Like me, you probably thought any EDM song you hear is “techno”. But, techno is actually a subgenre… and so is House, Moombahton, Trap, Trance and Hardstyle. These are just six out of 100+ subgenres. Learning the difference between Trap (rap influenced), Moombahton (reggaeton influenced) and Progressive House (mainstream EDM) made it easy for me to really immerse myself into the scene.
But it wasn’t until I went to the Electric Daisy Carnival Orlando, my first EDM festival, that I really started to fall in love with the music. When EDM phenomenon Kaskade closed out the two day event, my feelings got the best of me. The way he played his set was so beautiful, I could not play anything else for weeks.
It wasn’t just the music I fell in love with, it was the whole atmosphere. Festivals are where the music comes to life with exorbitant stages, colorful lights and flashing lasers, beautiful firework displays and the people! People get very creative with costumes, and really in to the kandi culture and PLUR. PLUR stands for Peace, Love, Unity and Respect, and most attendees live by this mantra. Attendees create unique kandi bracelets (most often colorful plastic bead bracelets with a word or phrase) and trade them with a unique handshake with complete strangers.
To get a real understanding of electronic dance, listening to it through your headphones isn’t enough. So if you’re planning on going to your first EDM festival, bring out your most creative outfit, make some kandi, and get ready to dance all night long! But most importantly, come with an open mind and open heart to spread nothing but good vibes.