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SALVA's RBMA DIARY – DAY 9

SALVA's RBMA DIARY – DAY 9


My favorite DJ, Benji B.

Wednesday 11/23

Tonight was easily the funnest gig I’ve had in recent memory. At 1 am the club was packed and the vibe was just ready to be set off – I took the hyper-intelligent nerdy dance set I planned and threw it out the window and just rinsed the most classic R&B, boogie, house and hip hop… some guilty pleasures for sure, but I loved it. The crowd was totally bananas, I thought I was DJ AM on the mixed format set. But I represented… RBMA makes sure each venue is solid and packed, and if you can bring it, you win. So fun, so so so fun. After I played the whole place was dripping with sweat, just in time for Jesse Boykins III to do a live vocal set, with Benji B. cueing up his instrumentals. It was so classy, Jesse is going to be a star – I give it about 12 months tops before he breaks the industry wide open…one of my favorite soul singers doing it right now. Then Benji B. brought it back underground with some of the hottest house, broken beat and hip hop shit that I’d never heard, as well as some of my favorite classics. He’s SUCH a good DJ, definitely my new fave. His selections (fools WISH they had his dubs right now) and his mixing were both impeccable… and of course he ended up with some sick slow/fast juke shit, and some Drake. We were literally jumping up and down pounding on the ceiling during his whole set… it was bonkers. Such a great night. I was still sick but I drank like 5 glasses of straight tequila so I didn’t feel a thing.


Things get emo listening to some dark Clams Casino beats

Earlier of course was another awe inspiring day of lectures. In the morning it was the young Clams Casino breaking down his induction into hip hop beatmaking and his accidental leap (he still doesn’t know what “Shoegaze” is, even though people tend to classify his sound as such) into being an avant-garde instrumental producer. I was never into “Drag”, never into the Triangle records sound or Salem, never really got Swag rappers either (maybe I’m too old) but he played some shit that I was really feeling actually… even Lil’ B song that I liked, ha! He has a very short history, only been in the game for a couple years, but I know he’s got some pretty major things on the horizon, I look forward to hearing where he takes his sound and who he collaborates with.


Benji B. interviews the legendary Tony Visconti

But then, another absolutely legendary figure in music, producer and long-time David Bowie collaborator, Tony Visconti graced us with his presence for the second lecture. His personal stories and achievements rivaled our other veteran lecturers of this session: from doing cocaine with John Lennon, 10+ albums of David Bowie production and collaboration, dozens of hit records, and more. Equally as impressive was his love for early technology and his pioneering of music gear, he was the first to have many commercial available pieces of technology in the ’70s, and pioneered many production techniques used today. I learned so much again from this lecture. He showed us his personal photo collection consisting of very important moments of his life and career which were a stunning realization of how potent his work was, and also how much of a rock star life he led. At the end of the day, another sweet man that was happy to invite all of us into the studio to actually jam and record a rock song – I sat out since I can’t pay guitar or drums and had to get ready for my gig, but I know he made life memories for some of my fellow participants. I was really happy for them and it made me realize once again that RBMA is the best thing happening in the music industry today, absolutely no contest. Who has ever done something like this, at this capacity? I still can’t believe it. I’ll forever have gratitude and appreciation for what they’ve done for us. Only two days left of the Academy and I definitely got my second wind after today, I have to go HARD the next couple days – in the studio and at the club, I have to make this last.


Tony Visconti conducts the family band

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  • I guess, it comes down to 18008 simple choice!

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