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Favorite ThisEDMbiz Slideshow + Review / The Cosmopolitan (Las Vegas, NV) / June 18-20

Published: July 9, 2013
Story by: Matt Thomas
Photos by: Avi Gallant

Electronic Dance Music (EDM) industry folk of all shapes and sizes showed up in Las Vegas on June 18th for the 2nd Annual EDMbiz conference presented by Insomniac Events. EDMbiz, a 2-day gathering that included numerous roundtable panel discussions with some of the biggest and most respected players in the game, as well as a number of associated Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) Week events that included Dash Berlin, Morgan Page, Nero, Carnage and more, appeared to be a success yet again.

You've got to hand it to Pasquale Rotale (CEO, founder and visionary behind Insomniac); the man knows how to host an event.  Whether it’s a weekly dance music night in Los Angeles or San Francisco, an EDC festival in any of a number of cities in the world (EDC expanded to Chicago and London this year), or a business conference for dance music industry peers in Sin City, people show up and expectations are not only met, but exceeded. “If you build it they will come.” And they did. Again.

In an industry that is growing at an unbelievable rate it is no surprise that this year’s EDMbiz also grew at a noticeable rate from its inaugural year. Anyone and everyone with even the slightest connection to EDM was there to rub elbows with some of the industry’s behemoths. Whether it was William Morris Endeavor head Marc Geiger, SFX’s Shelly Finkel, Beatport’s Matthew Adell, DJ Steve Aoki, Perry Farrell or even Insomniac’s Pasquale. Lunch breaks were not the only opportunity for networking, as lively discussions were happening in the hallways, elevators, and conference rooms throughout The Cosmopolitan and out into the streets of Vegas.

Something as worthwhile as collaborative discussion on major topics in the EDM industry (or Electronic Dance Culture industry as Shelly Finkel and SFX so adamantly refer to it) is important. Especially when that industry is experiencing the type of growth we are seeing. It makes sense for those with experience and vision to be helping to educate and inform those with lesser knowledge and experience. How else will it sustainably grow and be able to support itself when it reaches new heights?

While the workshops and discussion panels were the true meat and potatoes of EDMbiz, taking place for over 8 hours each day, the availability of direct access to some of the great minds and organizations in the industry proved priceless to many. Young agents bouncing ideas and questions off of grizzled vets like Rob Light of Creative Artists Agency (CAA), up and coming festival promoters star struck by the likes of Gary Richards or Pasquale, and unknown DJs getting production tips from Borgore and Dirty South. It was happening everywhere.

EDMbiz found itself a nice cozy home in the Cosmopolitan for a couple days. Like most insomniac events, there was a lot of magic happening; you could feel the buzz in the air. Not only were connections made, but mentors and friends were found as well. At this point, we can only assume it will return in 2014, and we are already looking forward to it.

Notable quotes:

“Greatest achievement of my life just to be nominated” – Steve Aoki discussing his Grammy nomination as part of the “EDM’s Place at the Grammys” panel

“You guys are doing ecstasy we were dropping acid” – Rob Light (CAA), in his keynote conversation with Kerri Mason (Billboard), discussing the similarities of EDM/EDC right now and the generational shift of the 60’s and the “Summer of Love”

“We have the experience now, maybe we won’t fuck it up this time” – Pete Tong on the current growth of dance music and the experience gained from the growth of dance music in the 90’s

“The stars are the best lightning rig” – Perry Farrell reflecting on his affinity for outdoor music festivals
 “Make good music!” – The unanimous answer from the artist panel when asked for “tips for aspiring producers”

Momentous Announcements:

- Insomniac and Live Nation announced a newly formed partnership.

“I am pleased to announce that insomniac and Live Nation have formed a creative partnership that will take our events to the next level.” - Simon Pasquale

- Insomniac and Dick Clark Productions announced a partnership to produce a dance music awards show in 2014 during EDC Week.

- Skip Paige of Goldenvoice received the “Leading The Way Award” for their philanthropic work through Coachella Music Festival.

- Grammys announced the creation of a nomination review committee for “dance music.” You think Al Walser had anything to do with it?

- The trailer for the new DJ AM documentary, As I AM: The Life and Times of DJ AM, was premiered by director Kevin Kerslake. Currently in post-production, this looks to be a “can’t miss” theatrical event, and will be in theatres nationwide.

- Perry Farrell announced that he is working on an “immersive theater” musical type of festival that may possibly feature the music and performance of Janes Addiction. Details were vague, but we were intrigued, especially after Perry acted out his quick interpretation of “immersive theater” for the crowd. He is a very entertaining man, that Perry Farrell.

Tags: ElectroHouseTranceDubstep