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[whitespace] Beat Boutique

Dropping in on five of Santa Cruz's hottest dance-floor DJs

By Rob Pratt. Photographs by George Sakkestad.

PEOPLE HAVE LONG known the pleasures of dance, the ecstasy of let-loose rhythmic movement to a beat. But even though mass-produced recordings have been around for most of the past century, the cult of the DJ has only developed in the past 25 years.

Pioneers like the Garage's Larry Levan, the Warehouse's Frankie Knuckles, Shoom's Paul Oakenfold and "the world's greatest DJ" Carl Cox have evolved a craft of musical tension and release, with aural manipulations both subtle and overt. They are, explains foremost rave journalist Simon Reynolds, the ultimate composers--framing musical moments from found objects and creating popular taste by showcasing favored pieces of their musical collections.

In Santa Cruz County, these taste-makers are gaining in visibility. In recent years, quintessential area dance club the Blue Lagoon has doubled in size to accommodate growing dance crowds, and other venues that once had at most a jukebox now have booming dance nights hosted by DJs known for a particular sound and scene.

Technical Warfare: Moe's Alley's Robert May.

I See You Baby: DJ Taylor of the Aptos Club and Rosie McCann's.

A to the D: A.D. of Club Dakota.

Body Punch Funk: Blue Lagoon's DJ Tripp.

We Got the Beat: DJ Adrian of the Blue Lagoon.

Body Rockin': Where to find dance nights.

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From the June 21-28, 2000 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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