Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE) is a 5 day electronic music conference that comprises of over 350 events spread across 75 venues. ADE is the world’s biggest club festival with hundreds of DJs and live acts performing in some of Amsterdam’s finest venues from cafes and lounges to record shops and even art galleries. The festival has grown considerably from its humble beginnings way back in 1996 as a series of small industry events, the festival now welcomes over 200,000 festival visitors and 40,000 tourists to the city. This year’s festival is due to run between the 16th and 20th October and we caught up with friend of This Is Progressive and DJ/Producer C-Jay to get the lowdown on the Amsterdam based festival.
Can you explain what ADE is and your involvement with the conference?
ADE is the biggest gathering in the world, for anything dance music related. Bookers, dj’s, producers, promotors, clubbers… For one week per year, the whole world is in my town, literally. I’m involved as a dj (playing), as a promotor (hosting my night at club NL), and off course I’m there in functionfor my dayjob, as I work for Dutch Authors rights organisation Buma / Stemra, the host of ADE. What I basically do for Buma, is that when you’re track gets played during an event / clubnight, you as a composer get your authors share for this.
You are playing a party with Dave Seaman and Pete Gooding this year at ClubNL. How did you come to work with Dave Seaman and is this something you do each year?
Yes. I started this night last year, and it looks like it’s becoming a yearly event. Dave and I know each other, cause Dave plays my music in his sets since a few years now. The same goes for Gooding.. well, they don’t play everything I make, but you get the picture. And as Dave and his agency wanted to be involved in ADE, they contacted me. (there’s more to this story, but basically this is it.. ) So, I arranged two nights in 2012, where two point zero agency and myself (C-Jay’s The Sessions) hooked up. After this, they added me to their roster, and this year we hook up again. Fun fact: in 2012 I didn’t have my own night at club NL, but since january 2013 I have. Yes kids, everything is connected…
ADE is split between conferences and events. What events and conferences can you recommend and why?
Honestly? Go and find out for yourself. There is so much to do, and the site / app of ADE is so easy to use. It’s really impossible to give tips, as all genres and tastes are present.
Ok, I have to say that you need to visit my closing night at club NL off course, on the Sunday. And the Digweed thing looks good, at Melkweg. Oh, and Saturday night I play with Seaman and Gooding in Dusseldorf, Germany…only 3 hours by train from Amsterdam. Do it!
Do you find the conferences useful for networking at ADE and if so why?
Yes… speaking for myself, I hardly visit any nights, but focus all my attention to the conference part during the daytime. Hanging out in the street is usefull; when you are there you will see the complete “who’s who” in dance, hanging out at just 200 square meters street / canal. Amazing. Handing out demo’s or taking a pic with Cox and Hawtin at the same time was never so easy. Really, they are all there, and they are all just walking around in the street. Good fun. For thos of you who wanna network, and don’t have a ticket? Just come without one, and do your business in the street in front of the conference. You will defo NOT be the only one doing this.
People in the industry find that attending conferences gives them the opportunity to catch up with industry friends that they would not normally get the opportunity to see. Do you find this is the case for you when at ADE?
Yes… it’s plain and simple: nowadays with social media, there are so many people you connect to throughout the year, but just never meet in real life. And now you can. And all of them in one go. Well, a few goes, as it’s a week.
Do you find ADE a good platform for testing new music and if so why?
Not specifically, no. In the end, it’s just clubnights. But a lot of them… a LOT! But no, for me its not really a testing playground. But in all fairness, everyone makes sure they have at least 2 new tracks ready to hand out, which wont be out for a while. Again, everyone is here. You have to have new product with you.
Which parts of the festival do you enjoy participating in the most?
The day programme. Conferences, Q&A’s and hanging out in front of the conference building.
Any tips for first time travelers to ADE?
Make sure you check the program. Pick 3 things you really, really wanna see and for the rest: go with the flow. You can’t see it all, trust me. But a top 3 is a must, as it’s just so much to choose from. Oh and if you here rumours about some big name doing some surprise thing? Go for it. They mostly rock. Last year Tenaglia announced a gig a few hours upfront.
And drink loads of water and eat some healthy food. For christ sake, you are not animals. Well, at night… but in the daytime, be a good boy. Or girl.
Which is your favourite club during the festival?
ADE is spread over 5 days. Can you recommend anywhere that is good to just kick back and relax during the festival?
Yes… step away from the conference buidling for about 300 meters, and there you go. Amsterdam city is one relaxing warm bath. Oh and if u wanna eat somewhere and see more than 5 tourists? Keep searching for a place with locals, mostly they know the good places. Avoid anyting in a 400 meter circle from the Dam square and you will be good.
Is there a point at the conference where you can tell the business stops and crazy times have taken over?
Last year I had this moment where Seaman was hanging in the curtains of club NL, while Pete Gooding was playing the original version of “YMCA” and I myself had a menage a trois with my girlfriend and purple 2 meter high rabbit while some record label manager shouted in my ear he wanted a remix of mine in exchange for 25 grams of coke…. Not sure if that was the moment when business and fun overlapped, but it could have been?
I bet there are some hilarious stories you can share from over the years. Can you tell us about your funniest ADE moment?
Me, guy mantzur, dave seaman, pete gooding, terry lee brown and 150 nutters having the time of our lives at club NL I 2012, way beyond closing time. Or that one time a girl fell from above (?) on my laptop, I threw her out of the booth and everything still worked. Or that one time you just keep going from party to party and than there’s another one…….Or being a member in a demo panel and some guy thought I was from this dubstep / breaks label and got offended…too many stories man. People should make their own memories… so easy during ADE to have fun.
If anyone wishes to stay on after the festival can you recommend any special places to visit in Amsterdam?
Waterlooplein for your second hand / vintage stuff. Westerpark to chill out and relax. And off course the Jordaan area, close to ADE for eating, drinking and kicking it back.
Is there anything else you can tell us about ADE that you feel our readers need to know?
If you find the Ghost of Amsterdam Past, and answer his 3 questions right, you will have free entrance to ADE for life. But if you fail, you will be turned into an Englishman. Or a lama.
Be careful kids.
to find out more, head to www.amsterdam-dance-event.nl