Before we even set foot in Austin for SXSW we were keeping an eye out for the happenings and goings on in Miami during Winter Music Conference. We were particularly interested in seeing what the turnout would be this year since the announcement that Ultra Music Festival would not be happening the same time as WMC this time around. From what we've been able to gather, other than slightly lower attendance than usual it wasn't too affected by the lack of involvement. In fact, it allowed WMC to go back further into its house roots.
The conference kicked off with the Official Opening Party at The Vagabond, which featured Frankie Knuckles, DJ David Morales and Hector Romero. From there it was a swirl of panels and parties for the rest of the week.
On Thursday night of the conference, Onitsuka Tiger joined The International Dance Music Awards at popular South Beach club Dolce. Shortly after walking the red carpet, award nominees and presenters for the ceremony were treated to Onitsuka Tiger gift bags including the latest Onitsuka Tiger sneakers, matching tees, V-Moda Headphones, and Cafe Bustelo Cool drinks. Demand for Onitsuka Tiger gear soared throughout the evening, and the product was so popular it ran out before the ceremony was even over! Loyal brand supporter, DJ Mark Farina stopped by to say "hi" with his wife. Robin S. (famous for her "Show Me Love" hit) also stopped by as well as master of ceremonies Daniel Glass, who all were outfitted in Onitsuka Tiger. Other VIPs also enjoyed their gift bags and could be seen throughout Dolce all night!
We noticed a lot of people talking about the panel moderated by Bruno del Granado of RM Entertainment Group featuring Beatport’s CEO Matt Adell. He was able to bring a lot of insight to the table.ChinaShop put together a nice post summing up what was discussed during the panel which you can read here. From the outside looking in on the dance community, Adell said a lot of things that completely made sense to me, like how pop music is the "gateway drug" to dance music and how important remixes are now more than ever. What I wasn't aware of is how much the dance charts on Billboard and such are about to change because Beatport is finally making reporting to Soundscan, etc. a priority now. Anyone serious about electronic music (especially in any form of business), this is a must read.