Tuesday, November 30, 2004

ATB in San Francisco

For those who are not familiar with electronic music, ATB (short for Andre Teneburger) has been a prominent producer and DJ in the scene for a number of years. His breakout CD "Moving Melodies" in 1999 contained the smash hit "(9pm) Till I Come". Scott and I were fortunate enough to be able to see him DJ at a club in San Francisco on November 26th. Following is a post I made to the ATB forums about our experience.

Hello from a newly-converted fan from San Francisco ! My husband has been a dedicated ATB follower for years, but I had never caught the "fever" until last Friday night when he appeared for a DJ performance at 1015 Folsom. This night was one of the best nights in my long history of raves and clubs, and ATB was who made that possible.

The main dance floor was absolutely packed with people. It was impossible to walk across this massive room without squeezing between hundreds of bodies. I could feel the energy and anticipation in the crowd, like a huge electomagnetic wave emanating from the dance floor. And when the man of the hour stepped onto the stage, with his distinctive smile and outstretched arms, the crowd erupted into frenzied cheers. ATB had arrived in San Francisco.

From my selected spot on the dance floor, 15 feet in front of the DJ booth, I could feel his energy and passion for the music. It extended from his outstretched hands and blissful smile, oscillating through the crowd like a magic spell. He wove a brilliant web of music, intermingling his own works with the works of others. There were times when he just closed his eyes, turned his hands to the sky, and let the sounds fill his existence. The music was a channel from him to the crowd. It was invigorating yet calming, satisfying, driving, motivating.

Throughout his 2+ hour set, his energy became our energy. His passion became our passion. People were dancing, jumping, throwing their hands in the air and screaming in appreciation. I hadn't felt that kind of excitement, that adrenaline, that outpouring of sheer ecstasy from a crowd in YEARS. I had to stop a couple of times and take a deep breath to avoid being overcome by the intensity of my emotions. Even my longtime ATB fan husband, who hates clubs and dancing, and who took up a spot standing on a bench off to the side, could feel it. The energy was everywhere in that room, rising from the floor beneath our feet to the heights of the massive ceiling, driving us to dance, to cheer, to feel the rush of adrenaline, and to dance even more.

The two-plus hour set felt like an eternity, yet drew to a close all too soon. Gracious as he was, ATB signed a few autographs and shook hands with the fans clamoring at the booth. Being of diminuitive stature, I could not get close enough for either, but was impressed at this non-pretentious show of appreciation for his fans. My husband and I left the club, our bodies exhausted, our minds charged, glowing, satiated.

It is a difficult feat to sleep soundly after such an experience, but we managed somehow, until.. husband awoke in the early hours of the morning to me chanting A-T-B ! A-T-B ! - out loud, in my sleep.

Who knew that a DJ and his music could invade not only the conscious mind and body, but the subconscious entity as well ? That, I suppose, is what makes a great DJ, artist and entertainer.

My husband has always been the die-hard fan. But after Friday night, you can count me in the fan club as well.


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