(In response to "In It to Spin It" in the Nov. 26 -- Dec. 2 issue of Urban Tulsa Weekly)
It seems like I should be the first to comment on this article, since I know all too well almost all of these "major players" in the Tulsa scene since I've been part of it since 1989. I moved from Tulsa to Dallas 6 months ago precisely because of the one-sided and sadly mainstream nature of what this article pretends to represent about the OK DJ scene there.
I myself was part of the beginning, middle, and what I see "the present" as the end of Tulsa's true underground DJ scene. Many of the people chosen to tell this tale are part of the reason that the scene is dead or dying, because they refuse to admit that there are all kinds of DJs and promoters in Tulsa that never have opportunities to do their thing at the clubs in T-Town. If you want to hear any type of underground music that is not house or electro music then you have nowhere to go, unless you happen to know the right people who know where and when the real underground parties happen like Bassmeant.
I worked at promotions with several different production crews for over four years to effect change by bringing in talent from LA/Dallas/Springfield/really all over to provide opportunities for Tulsa folk to experience what the DJ scene should be with variety not the same old thing. But, I wasn't consulted about this article because I am not the mainstream favorite.
I have always been part of the underground or what you like to call the DIY set. I can't even believe how all of these DJSs and one promoter who supposedly represent Tulsa can agree to be showcased like this without any props to the people who are out there still doing things underground because they have to. We still have to borrow equipment and book DJs and throw parties by the skin of our teeth in order to hear the music we want to hear and dance to and play. I finally decided to leave Tulsa because it's this sad state of apathy and complacency that is rampant in Tulsa's music scene that allows articles like this to be written. It's sadder still that there are some who think it's a good thing as if this is truly the way of the dj. Rave is not dead, as evidenced by the fact that I'm going to a 12000 partygoer's massive rave in Austin in 2days that I've been promoting for 2 months, so I'm still working to change things.
I was around almost all of these "premier" DJs/promoter from this article when they first began and I can tell you there has not been a lot of evolution. It seems like the norm is to find something that keeps getting you paid and just keep doing that same thing no need to change or improve or uplift the others who are coming up now trying to make a difference and evolve the craft.
If David "DJ Chron" was still alive he would have given a much different perspective because he always acknowledged the up and comers and did all he could to support them. I can name any number of other DJs/production crews/etc. who are still there in Tulsa beating their heads against the wall of the supposed "scene" of people who perpetuate the boring old status quo in Tulsa. It just makes me more glad that I left and am able to go to Electronic Dance Music events of multiple genres at 2-3 different weekly events around Dallas or surrounding areas almost anytime I want to do something special. I keep in touch with everyone back home in one form or another, but this just makes me sad to see that nothing at all has changed except Tulsa is more and more out of touch with the direction of the true underground music scene and is fine with being so removed from reality. Keep the faith, Bassmeant crew, one of these days you will get your props from the people who really matter the ones who truly appreciate the true underground DJs and promoters.
Thanks for the support (Vanessa). You worded that much better than I would have. I remember when a certain one of these DJ's was a nobody who we let come play at our weekly show some years ago and then only shoved us off to the side with no support from him afterwords. That's the kind of support that happens around here. If DJs keep playing what the dancers know, then how is the music going to progress? The Tulsa scene isn't about new, it's about familiarity.
It's unfortunate that this mentality is accepted and encouraged. While everyone is caught up in puffing out their chests and trying to prove they're better than the next guy, the scene is suffering because no one really cares about the music. It's just background noise to their little drama conventions.
I'm sorry, this article is so far off the reality scale it constitutes what one calls a "joke". Mr. G.K. Hizer, you should take the time to research info before writing an article. Consulting your friends doesn't count, and Sker is not the pinnacle, nor these particular DJs the top echelon (or "top tier") of the Tulsa dance scene. The one-sided history lesson of the Alpha and Omega Sker is just that, one-sided. There was a large gap in the evolution of dance music by several DJs in this town whose backs have been stepped on for the advancement of others. Just the contradiction in your opening paragraph justifies the fact that you spent barely any time looking into a subject that is completely alien to you.
There was no mention of the Station 2, SRO, Curlys, or any parties that where incredibly sucessful both during Sker's reign, or during his absence or now. Every time I pick up a UTW do I seem to get the feeling this guy is best friends with your mag? It seems as if this article was a pow-wow of back scratching from a small group of people who run in each other's social circles. That's not really taking a broad approach to the plethora of DJs that play in this town. And as for the comment about individuality, you need to go beyond the few DJs that you named that primarily play, '80s, mash-up, and top 40, and even cycle the same tunes amongst each other (no offense guys, I do know most of you on a first name basis, so no hate involved). Your article tries to stretch a quarter across a railroad track. Not only did you really fudge on the history lesson, but you succeeded in taking a big ole hearty crap on the DJ scene as a whole. Thanks UTW.
Be glad that Tulsa has a mag that wants to tell the tale! I am not crying. I have been in the DJ game since Ikon was at that same night that Moby was there, and I wasn't mentioned. I was also there every weekend until it ended. Should we get upset that they didn't mention the parties they had at VickTown or any of the other parties that happened in the living rooms with 200 plus people were dancing until 7am.
Maybe. Instead of bitching that a guy that got asked to do an interview that has been in the game long enough to explain how it started, be glad that there is an interview and maybe work that much harder so that this mag can tell your story as well!! Grow up. Be glad we have people like Sker, DJ Snap and Marcos to have paved the way in this scene, so others can walk a little easier! Oh, and Zach Mathews did a lot on things at SRO as well. Really if you think about it all this really started at clubs like Ikon and the Max that were before oculus and DJ snap really became popular DJing at those clubs.
I remember saying to my buddy my first long night at IKON, "Man who's that DJ with the gasmask playing the Pacman song?" LOL. Good job, Sker you did it well with the space you had. Really, rave is sleeping here and is thriving in other states and the UK ... Mad props to Moddy and all the ones who started this thing in T-Town.
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