Around noon I arrived in Manhattan via train from Baltimore. It was a warm and sunny day in NYC -- great for an outdoor festival! I had an hour at the hotel beforehand to quickly grab some lunch and to get everything ready for EDC. In the lobby, I met with my PR agent Justin Kleinfeld, a film crew and two good friends who joined me to experience this outstanding festival.
On our way to the venue, our limo driver was a bit funny, as he stopped to get himself some water from a hotdog vendor... thought he could at least have asked if we would like some as well... but he didn't. After leaving the tunnel and entering into NJ we got a wonderful view of the Manhattan skyline before finally arriving at the Met Life Stadium around 4 p.m. One of the New Jersey Transit trains had just arrived with hundreds of dressed-up ravers getting off -- there was a huge line at the entrance gate and it all looked very busy and exciting.
We had to go to the artist entrance, but unfortunately our driver had no clue where that was, so he stopped somewhere in the middle of the general parking lot and asked us "Please to get off now" and "This is where I dropped all other people before." My tour manager told him to drive to the Bud Light artist check-in gate, as this was supposed to be "our" destination. He didn´t know what this was nor where this would be, so as he asked one of the security guys for the "Buddie Life Gate." In the end we made it!
After check-in, everything went smoothly. We entered through the huge backstage area of the stadium and it was impressive to see how big everything was. But most importantly I wanted to finally see the Cosmic Meadow Size Matters stage where I would play! As we arrived there, I was like "wow!" It was inside the huge (and I mean huge -- 80,000 people capacity!!!) stadium. The stage production was impressive, with a giant LED wall, and as I took a little sneak view from behind the booth, I could see a big crowd raving! For me this is always a special moment when I arrive at a festival, shortly before I'm going on -- when you see the crowd, you can feel the vibe, and it's this special kind of getting nervous before my set. It´s a good kind of nervousness, a mixture of excitement, anticipation and a bit of "lampenfieber"...
It took a bit until we got our beverages so my tour manager got some beer at the nearby bar... just wondering why you were only allowed to order two Bud Lights per person?!
My buddies AN21 and Max Vangeli were on at this time; the guys threw a banging set and you could see the crowd enjoying it a lot... Then it was my time to go on. Walking up the stairs to the stage, I now could see the whole dance floor, and I was overwhelmed how many people there were!
After taking over from AN21 and Max, I started off with a special intro version of my remix on Miike Snow's "The Wave" that I had done specifically for this day... it went down well, the reaction of the people was great, and so I felt connected to the crowd immediately. The vibe was amazing, and I had such a great time throughout all my set -- actually time just flew by, and I didn't even realize all those amazing costumed dancers coming on stage while I was playing. Once I nearly crashed with my film guy who was in the booth when I was jumping up and down to he music, not having noticed he was directly behind me... but, well, he survived, and we both had a laugh!
The sun was still shining for the first half of my set or so, and it got quite hot on stage, but fortunately my buddy who came with me was pouring me drinks from time to time (although he seemed to have misunderstood the proper mix ratio of vodka and Red Bull; is there any Red Bull in it? Or has the vodka only been next to the Red Bull can?).
As usual, the time went way too fast and I could already see Erick Morillo standing at the edge of the stage waving a quick hello to me. I finished off with my last track, enjoyed the crowd for some more minutes and then Erick took over.
After my set it was time for some interviews... as we had to head over to the other side of the EDC area, I took one of those golf carts to get to the Sirius XM stand for the first interview -- live on air! The interview was fun as always with the Sirius guys. Short and sweet. We talked a bit about my set and then about my upcoming Axtone compilation -- and about my own show on Sirius XM, which will start off soon! Next to the Sirius camp the security guys had set up their own little barbecue stand, which was very nice, as I could grab a quick hot dog! They located themselves next to a little pool where three girls were refreshing and splashing around... they seemed to have fun... not too bad. I was not too sure what the guys enjoyed more, BBQ in the sun or watching the three girls... festival style.
We then went back to the stadium for a few more interviews. Taking the cart again was a nice occasion to see some more of the whole EDC venue, we just passed the main stage as Calvin Harris finished and Sebastian Ingrosso was about to go on, and it was amazing to see all those happy ravers everywhere, the music, the sun, the artists -- great!
Backstage again I ran into Steve Angello, who was up for a little chat before his amazing set. After the interviews I finally discovered the backstage artist hospitality area where I also found my food and beverages. Time to relax a bit and to enjoy Steve's set!
I had to leave a bit earlier as I played one of the official EDC afterparty's! Another great one!
Falling asleep at around 6am, thinking of all the happy faces -- this was an extremely good start for the first EDC in New York! Can't wait for the next .