How Dirtybird Perfected Their West Coast Festival



In the last hours of Monday morning at Modesto Reservoir, I saw a small army of Dirtybirds muster the elbow grease to start breaking down the Fourth Edition of Dirtybird Camp. The industrious production crew rushed into the park with walkie-talkies in one hand and steaming cups of coffee in the other. The looks on their faces spoke of a triumph fueled by caffeine, Kubota tractors and the unmistakably alluring cadence of mellow house music.

Among the other legends of the Birdhouse Stage, Roman Flügel delivered techno for purists, while developing global commodities like Mikey lion and Sacha Robotti burst into a sensational back-to-back ensemble before enduring a few legendary renegade nights in the campgrounds. Stars like Wyatt marshall have shared tracks that have contributed to its recent meteoric rise, such as a remix of “Who’s fear of Detroit?” by Claude VonStroke. and ‘Relax’, which is hot on the Your mind, your body EP. Even the opening of the festival, VNSSA, turned out to be a fun fan favorite. His Friday afternoon taste set was a recurring topic of conversation – and his 1/2 mile float race was one of the busiest activities of the weekend.

Naturally, Dirtybird players didn’t disappoint either.

Photo by Max Benoît

Evolve as event producers

Cool songs like Justin martinthe new track from ‘Set it off’ kept the momentum going all weekend, and with more Dirtybird fans at the festival than ever before, the sold-out event was a fitting tribute to the late grillmaster Grillson and a huge step forward for the evolving production team. . Grillson, who died in June, was honored by the tireless efforts of Arturo Cruz and Alex ‘Burger’ Hamburger behind the grill – and a Dirtybird patch with his name on it, to recognize the restaurant professionals who come forward to create culinary experiences. The meandering plates were the envy of the crowd, but (like in previous years) he was the boss of the label and the “chief advisor” Barclay crenshawvision of the activities inspired by the camps that stole the show.

By registering at Games HQ to participate in the color games, campers had the rare chance to revel in moment after moment in a celebrity-infused feature, where the games pitted campers against each other. others in teams of purple, green, red and orange. DJs and staff also participate, so campers can discuss the wise balance between eating pizza and exercising in the heat of a run alongside the original Dirtybird, Justin martin, or talk about “sober October” while learning to dye with Mikey lion by Desert Hearts. Same Claude VonStroke jumped into the action, popping up behind bridges to cheer on the pals while simultaneously competing in the three-legged run, water balloon toss and tug of war.

Photo by Kristina Bakrevski

If the evolution that comes with each year has been the result of challenges overcome, this edition of campout will likely be remembered as the launch pad that catapulted the Dirtybird Campout Festival into the upper stratosphere of unique and world famous house music festivals. . 2018 was particularly pivotal, thanks to two firsts.

It was the first year that Dirtybird had produced the festival on its own..

Do LaB had co-produced the festival on all editions of Dirtybird Campout on the West and East Coast. After several barbecues on the road, the team were no strangers to throwing a legendary party, but stretches it out over a few days and a few other skills come in handy. To meet the challenges of the festival’s production, Dirtybird executives brought in lumineers from Insomniac and Desert Hearts, as well as a few behind-the-scenes hands from The Do LaB in what turned out to be a set of stars conserving artisanal experiences. As the scope of their projects widens, the Dirtybird family is poised to grow.

Photo by Max Benoît

It was the first year in a new place.

Even for the most seasoned party planners, a new location can present a number of challenges. It was a new county (Stanislas) with new rules, but with hindsight, the event went well. Locals and fans alike saw the return to Northern California as a homecoming.

From traffic flow to fire routes, everything is a factor in planning when a location changes. Some spaces lend themselves well to the entry and exit of large trucks – such as those needed to clean portable pots – while others have natural barriers like hills and trees that can isolate a scene from bleeding. ‘another one. At Modesto Reservoir, the variances between activities and stages resulted in a lot of walking, but like a good set of new shoes, the perfect place for Campout is sure to include room to grow taller. As large as it is, the size of the hall did not prevent overwork on the dancefloor. I followed over 42,000 steps on my pedometer the first day and still danced the night away.

With a central path to get in and out of campgrounds, it just got easier to make friends every step of the way. As no participant had previous experience on the site, many wanderings naturally occurred. To direct and guide curious campers, additional signage at key intersections or a few well-placed maps or markers you are here would have been an indispensable key to correcting the course, but it’s an easy fix in 2019. Next year, lighting, signage, and other visual elements are almost sure to appear bigger and more authentic, spreading the Campout vibe throughout the place.


The secret sauce is family-friendly

One characteristic that exemplifies the spirit of the Dirtybird brand is the sheer will and brotherly spirit of the production team. Besides being a real family – in many cases siblings even dress the same – the black shirt team worked on the verge of collapse all weekend like real family on the weekend. would do. When one of those black shirts actually tipped over with fatigue as she stood next to me backstage at the Birdhouse, six of her closest friends grabbed her before her drink was done. spread on the ground. At that time, I saw with my own eyes how far these people will go for their families. It was positive proof that the collective is striving to move forward and, for those who know them, the outpouring of dedication and support speaks volumes about what it means to be a “Dirtybird”.

Click here to check out the 45 Best Totem Poles of 2018 Dirtybird Campout


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