Ultra Music Fest 2011: 10 Things Seen and Overheard Sunday
Attendees at the Ultra Music Festival seemed a bit less sure of their movements on Sunday: That's what happens after three days of non-stop dancing in the punishing sun. But day 3 of Miami Music Week was the best of the lot, allowing some big names to kick back and enjoy their peers, or assess what the heck just happened. here's what you missed:
1. Diddy's been threatening to break out as a dance music force for years. He continued the tease with an appearance during longtime friend and collaborator DJ Erick Morillo's Ultra main stage set. He hyped the crowd while Morillo dropped some of Diddy's new reworks, including the Dirty South mix of "Coming Home."
2. Heineken taxi tops buzzed around South Beach, boasting the brand's UMF sponsorship with the tagline, "Have a beer with 150,000 of your friends." This marked a dual victory for any electronic music event: Having enough scale to secure a sponsor willing to throw in promotional media dollars, and sufficiently defending its audience as dominantly 21+.
3. Carl Cox donned an afro wig and dropped classics, jazz and disco to a tiny, invite-only crowd of 200 at Mokai, which included international industry-ites and fellow DJs Steve Lawler and Ferry Corsten.
4. New darling Avicii got a drop-by from the affable Benny Benassi during his headlining set at super-glam superclub Mansion.
5. Beatport gave out the 4th Annual Beatport Music Awards, decided by straight sales in some categories, and fan votes in others. Some key winners: Swedish House Mafia's "One" for Progressive House Track and Community Choice Track of the Year; deadmau5 for Community Choice Artist of the Year, and Top Electro House Track for "Animal Rights" with Wolfgang Gartner.
7. New Ultra Records signing Drop The Lime dropped his new single "Hot As Hell" at the Tower of Ultra stage, a preview of the rockabilly/electro hybrid sound his upcoming material will explore.
8. From the VIP area at the Beatport Beach Party during his Size Records label shindig, Steve Angello expressed a desire to make it up to the thousands who couldn't get into the Swedish House Mafia's Masquerade Motel -- and vowed to go even bigger next year.
9. Green Velvet track "Flash" -- a snarky skewer of news magazine shows trying to terrify parents about their clubbing kids' activities -- was the track of Winter Music Conference a decade ago, via a remix by Danny Tenaglia. It made a welcome return this year with a new mix by Dutch DJ/producer Nicky Romero on Relief Records, dropped in peak spots by everyone from Swedish House Mafia to David Guetta.
10. Fronted by sparkplug singer Alice Glass, Crystal Castles played a fast and hard set on the Ultra Live stage to a crowd that stretched into the concessions area.
(Additional reporting: Josh Bennett, lessthan3.com)