Thursday, March 16, 2017

throwback thursday (the rave edition)

I was a raver in the mid to late nineties. It was following the last edge of the "club kid" years that died with Angel, made famous by the movie Party Monster.

Ravers, were party kids. Not club kids. Not a ravers per se because we saw that as a "bubblegum term" from the European discotheques playing early trance. We were just party kids.

For me, this ranged from the black-out warehouse parties in Detroit, to house loft parties on Belmont and Clark in Chicago. It was a rich time and I was in the right place.

I remember standing in Route 66, a roller rink on the southside of Chicago. I watched as a variant of party goers flooded in and out of a hall while techno pumped into our souls. My thought was, “This is special. This important. Remember this. Remember the feeling. Remember what it is to be part of this".

The scene at the time was easy to get lost in. Between the number of events, (sometimes, two each night on; Friday, Saturday, and Sunday -- not counting after hours meetups), the masses of party goers, and the unfortunately drug usage (which I never used at a rave), it was hard to keep track of anyone. We didn't have digital social networks to track us. Plus, people like me made blending into the background the an art form. Although, I did throw parties and made flyers.

Flyers I made for the Wonderland Parties.

And for 99% of the people I knew, I kept my little rave hobby to myself. It was just plain easier that way. Because let's face it, party kids were some crazy people. I once saw a promoter break into a warehouse and pull a sawed-off shotgun out of his pants. This was because someone wasn't, “respecting the guestlist”.

I still have a care bear duffel bag (that I rescued from a thrift store) that has a small collection of my most prized party-going possessions.


Inside is a binder covered in stickers that were either traded, or given to me, some tapes that are probably not playable, and some other bits.


Within the binder, I have the flyers I started collecting after that fated night at Route 66.


I wish I could show pictures of me from my misspent youth. However, I avoided the camera like the plague. Note: In a previous post proves this point by the fact that I have a single picture from my prom.

There are so many stories and claims-to-fame I have that would probably astound some. Like, that time a member of Daft Punk tried to show me his record at Daft Punk’s first release tour. I swatted him away because he interrupted my dancing. Typical.

Anyhoo, here is a YouTube video from that time. It is as accurate as it could be for a Chicago "rave" at the time. Although, the media like to portray ravers much more drug dependent than we were. It was not 75%. I would say, more like 50%.


Thank you, Chicago. A part of me will always be that little party kid, who went for the music, the experience, and NOT the drugs.

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