Tiësto, a Dutch DJ who played at the Sands Casino Event Center in Bethlehem Sunday night brought electronic music admirers together for a Club Life College Tour.
I got dropped off 20 minutes before the show, that was set to start at 7:00 pm, feeling very much like William Miller from the movie Almost Famous when he was making his first appearance covering for the Rolling Stone Magazine.
I found myself at the bar thinking back to my early memories of Tiësto. It was in high school in South American, where I was raised, so the early 2000’s electronic music was a thing in Latin America. As I made my way to the United States for college, electronic music felt foreign and was even told to “turn it off” at a college party my freshman year. Funny thing about it all, is by my senior year electronic music was suddenly making an appearance.
“At the end of the 90’s and into 2000, electronic music was still an underground phenomenon, especially in America,” said Tiësto.
As I looked around the room it didn’t look like a Tiësto show. I was expecting glitter, flower crowns, colorful outfits, funky hair, hula hoops, glow sticks, and poi lights. It felt as if it could have been anyone behind the curtain – But in all honesty, what does a Tiësto show supposed to look like? I finished up my drink and went to go see what exactly was happening behind the curtain.
The show started with Black Caviar, DJ’s and Producers based out of New York City, a duo made up of Troy Hinson, an Emmaus High School Graduate, and Jared Piccone. They warmed up the place with their combination of mixed beats. They had a simple white light on them and little to no video visual.
Mike Williams, a 20-year-old Dutch DJ then made his way to the stage. The place was filling up as the audience seem to recognize the young, energetic, handsome DJ, girls were shouting out “marry me!” and “oh my god, he is so cute!” Williams is known to work with Tiësto and is also recognized as the “artist of the future” by Spinning Records. He is regarded as “a pioneer of the future house subgenre and future bounce.” He displayed a simple sound wave like video visual and cool color lighting.
Opening for Tiësto was DJ Slushii, a 20-year-old New Jersey native who brought a colorful, intense, video game and anime like sound – which clarified why I saw someone wearing a Pokémon shirt. Fans immediately responded to his appearance and his combination of vocals, giddy trance synths, trap drums, and dubstep drops.
As for the main event, avid fans were chanting for the need-no-introduction DJ, “Tiësto! Tiësto! Tiësto!” His Club Life College Tour brought college kids from the surrounding area which created an atmosphere that felt like one.
“Tiësto got me into electronic music, his album Elements of Life did it for me,” said a passionate Tiësto fan. “I describe it as the Dark Side of the Moon album in terms of how each song can stand on his own as well as making sense all together.”
There were even first timers, as well as people who have seen him all the way in Belgium at a notable music festival called Tomorrowland.
Tiësto packed the placed with this intuitive installment of his Club Life mix series which pays tribute to the nightlife of destinations the veteran DJ has connected with. “Trance music is very emotional and uplifting form of dance music. It appeals to many people in this way having a strong connection with emotions. It makes people happy and ready to party,” describes Tiësto.
The notable DJ who started in 1994 explains, “since I was a kid, I always felt the need to share the music I love with as many people as possible, and DJing seemed like the perfect outlet.”
He was the first DJ to play live on stage at any Olympics in 2004 for the Summer Opening Ceremony in Athens. He has headlined at Coachella, Electric Daisy Carnival, Stereosonic, Tomorrowland and Ultra.
Tiësto has described himself as, “…commercial underground. I’m not commercial in the way people consider ‘pop’ but I’m not underground in the way people consider that either.”
People waved their hands in the air like they just don’t care, moving and grooving to the assumed Greatest DJ in the last 20 years as well as the “Godfather of EDM.”
“I can honestly say that the fans inspire. There’s an unexplainable rush that comes when I’m in the middle of a set and the energy from the fans hit me…” says Tiësto
Tiësto wrapped up his limited 8 city Club Life College Tour in Bethlehem. For those of you who weren’t there, if you didn’t see it on Snap Chat, you might find it on Facebook Live.