The Blend Parties Moved From LA to Denver And Only Got Better

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Lonely Boy (aka Joshua Heath, one of the founders of the Blend)
When Lonely Boy (also known as Joshua Heath) launched the Blend in Los Angeles about ten years ago, he envisioned the night as a combination -- a blend -- of electronic and live music. "At the time, I had a live band, and we wanted to do a night where we could feature the band in a live setting and also feature DJs, because the group was a mixture of people into both electronic and live music, and so we figured, 'Why not feature both things?'"

It's come a long way from those origins; a Denver tradition since 2011, the Blend returns to Beauty Bar this Saturday, September 27 -- and Lonely Boy is the special guest DJ.

See also: Privé Social Club, Featuring DJs and Dance Music, Opening Soon Near Larimer Square

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Why I can't take "EDM" seriously

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Eric Gruneisen. Full slideshow.
At SnowBall, where you can dance if you want to, as long as you don't call it EDM.

I love electronic music. I love the sound, the artists, the parties, the people, the scene -- in fact, I'm into pretty much everything about this particular genre of music. But there's one thing about electronica that I'm really, really not into. At all.

It's the term "EDM." I hate it.


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The best EDM in Denver this weekend

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Ryan Crosson

FRI | RYAN CROSSON at NORAD | 3/28/14

Ryan Crosson exemplifies techno at its finest, whether your measuring stick is based on the heyday of Detroit techno or on the sub-genre's modern-day residency in Berlin. Crosson made a name for himself in both cities; after sharpening his needles alongside artists like Richie Hawtin and Kevin Saunderson, he helped found the seminal Visionquest label with colleagues Shaun Reeves, Seth Troxler and Lee Curtiss. And although he can be counted on to lay down some of the very latest techno floor-pounders in his sets, Crosson is also a master of selecting blasts from the past to stitch into his latest sound, whether it's a jazzy, brassy sample from a vintage record or a righteous techno track you haven't heard for twenty years. He'll play a special set at NORAD on Friday, March 28. (9 p.m., 21+, $10 and up)

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The best EDM in Denver this weekend

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Mark Farina

FRI | MARK FARINA at BAR STANDARD | 3/21/14

Mark Farina plays mushroom jazz, and that's just the way it is. Seamlessly fusing funk, soul, jazz, and hip-hop into a fluid soundtrack, Farina has grown into a household name at Bar Standard where he regularly plays sets in what could be called his home away from home. Denver Disco prides itself on bringing nu-disco to the masses, but when Mark Farina gets behind the decks. disco goes rogue and turns into a nostalgic funk fest where nothing is safe from the remixing skills of one of the best in the game. Catch him with Uriah West at Bar Standard (9 p.m., 21+, $10 and up) -- Britt Chester


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The best EDM in Denver this weekend

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Doctor P
FRI | DOCTOR P at BETA | 3/14/14

My dubstep has a first name, and it's D-O-C-T-O-R-P. Having established himself as one of the originators in bringing dubstep to the masses, Doctor P's early hits still get regular play in the biggest sets. To boot, his Circus Records imprint is constantly releasing new bangers, and that means the now-tired "Sweet Shop" can get a little break from constant plays. Alongside Cookie Monsta, it's safe to say that both of these acts will destroy the Funktion-Ones, and the ears of everyone throwing down on the main floor of Beta. (9 p.m., 18+, $25) -- Britt Chester

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The best EDM shows in Denver this weekend

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Adam Beyer

FRI | ADAM BEYER at NORAD | 3/8/14

It's entirely appropriate that Adam Beyer's techno label bears the handle Drumcode, considering that the techno enthusiast was a drummer in his teenage years before turning to electronic music in 1990, when he purchased his first set of turntables. Although the Swedish DJ was initially drawn to a wide range of genres, he settled on his flagship sound -- hard, pounding, dark techno -- by the mid-'90s, and he's risen to the top since then. Drumcode isn't any old label; on top of the typical album releases, Beyer also offers up regular podcasts under the imprint's name, all of which are well worth listening to. His techno sets regularly pack dance floors around the globe, and he'll no doubt show just why he's been a top DJ and producer for two decades when he takes over the decks at NORAD on Saturday, March 8; in the lounge, catch Julian Jeweil, Omid 16B, Jewel-Kid, Shea Delaney, Aaron Lee, Redone, Austin Diogo and Alex M. (9 p.m., 21+, $15-$25)

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The 12 best EDM shows in Denver this March

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Eric Gruneisen
Fans at the Griz and Gramatik show last fall. Griz is back March 10 at Belly Up Aspen
THU-SUN | DENVER WINTER SHOWCASE @ BAR STANDARD & NORAD | 3/6 to 3/9
When Andy Roberts moved to Colorado a few years ago, he immediately recognized the scene here as something he wanted to be a part of, which ultimately birthed the idea for the Denver Winter Showcase. Now in its sophomore year as a techno/house-music party, the festival is totally geared to the city's techno-heads. For this year's version, Roberts is bringing a gang of talent to NORAD and Bar Standard, as well as announcing the location of the after-hours party.


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The best EDM in Denver this weekend

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FRI | ICHISAN at BAR STANDARD | 2/28/14
It's not often that artists like Ichisan get a chance to play in this part of the world, so dance lovers in Denver should be stoked that he's headed here. The Slovenian musician began his musical career on stringed instruments -- specifically, the guitar -- for bands playing in several genres before he delved into electronic music and realized that that particular shoe fit him a little better. As a photographer, Ichisan has got an eye for moments that capture your attention, and he's parlayed that talent into both his production and his deejaying career, creating tracks and sets that smoothly reel in his audience. Although his taste tends toward the more gentle side of funky, that just means you'll be flat­out surprised at how long you've been bobbing your head or twitching your hips to what he's creating -- it sneaks up on you like that. -- Amber Taufen

See also: All upcoming shows in our constantly updated Denver concert calendar


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New local EDM, remixes from Two Fresh, Decadon and Illenium, and a new cut from Pruitt

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Focus4Design

Back with another edition of In the Mix, a feature in which we spotlight new dance tracks and mixes from local producers and DJs. Although we've got one original track, this week's edition is pretty much devoted to remixes of other tracks. Two Fresh brings a fresh flavor with its uptempo take on an otherwise downtempo track. Decadon, meanwhile, delivers his take on the summer anthem "Tsunami," while Illenium changes the pace with a serious dubstep banger and Pruitt drops an original track. Continue on to get the drop.

See also: In the Mix archives, fresh cuts from Big Gigantic, Vinnie Maniscalco, Krooked Drivers, Paper Diamond, option4, SuperVison, Unlimited Gravity and more

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Denver Winter Showcase full lineup and venues

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John Tejada is just one of the acts slated to perform at the Denver Winter Showcase

When Andy Roberts moved to Colorado a few years ago, he immediately recognized the scene here as something he wanted to be a part of, which ultimately birthed the idea for the Denver Winter Showcase. Now in its sophomore year as a techno/house music party, the festival is totally geared to the city's techno-heads. Expanding to four days this year and moving to new locations (DWS started at NORAD Dance Bar), Roberts is bringing a gang of talent to NORAD and Bar Standard, as well as announcing the location of the after-hours party. Full lineup, venues and details below.

See also: Mid-March local EDM festival, the Denver Winter Showcase, adds third night of music


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