Sundance Diaries: Silver Medallion
Every year, thousands of people from around the globe descend on Park City, Utah for the Sundance Film Festival, the largest independent cinema festival in the world. Yet, aside from the dozens of features and short films screened, the nightlife scene at Sundance has become its own story, with surprise performances and DJ sets happening every night and celebrity sightings occurring almost nonstop.
This year, we decided to ask some of our favorite DJs in attendance to throw various parties to document their experiences for a feature we're calling "Sundance Diaries." In addition to providing their own recaps of their days, we also asked them to help tell their stories by using the Instagram app on their phones, so check out the photo gallery below the recap to see what some of our favorite nightlife party-starters saw during their time at Sundance this weekend.
Today we bring you the "Sundance Diary" of New Yorker by-way-of Arizona electronic dance music producer and DJ Oren J AKA Silver Medallion, who just released the music video for his collaboration with Dunston, "Trainwreck." Oren has been touring since 2009, sharing stages with the likes of Avicii, Rusko, Girl Talk, LMFAO, Benny Benassi, Dev and Chiddy Bang, among others.
Friday, January 20 - The first day of my Sundance experience began amidst waves of snow rolling through Park City, which is all well and beautiful if you're not hauling three bags of DJ equipment down an icy hill in skinny jeans. This year I'm coordinating a DJ series at the Talent Resources Suites in Gateway Center, where some of the best DJ talent spin in the daytime while celebrities and media grab their giant bags of free swag. Anthony Pisano, a big resident DJ in Miami (LIV, Louie and many more), and a member of the dance music group Brass Knuckles was our guest this afternoon, and he played jams while SNL alum Chris Kattan told jokes for the cameras. Football players came to the DJ booth to take photos and I dealt with the barrage of text messages from everyone outside who couldn't get in. Friday night was my night off from DJing so I let myself be talked by some locals into going somewhere where they were playing dubstep. Later, we chased around town because of rumored celebrity sightings, but in the end it was pretty anti-climactic.
Saturday, January 21 - Saturday I awoke to a full-on blizzard, which made me extremely thankful the rental company left an ice scraper in the car. I made it down to Main Street alive, but some of the other DJs didn't quite have the same luck, and were caught in the snow outside of town. So I filled in sets while Aziz Ansari, Mario Lopez, and a host of others cruised around the suite, and enjoyed an ahi & guacamole breakfast compliments of Beau Marchais. Mick Boogie came in at 2:30 pm and spun classic hip hop, soul and funk. Afterward I spun a cocktail party for Voli vodka, where the crew from Remix watches came through and hung out till 9:30 pm. The staff from the TR Suites and I hit dinner at Silver on Main Street. I had been prepared to go to Tao to see Kaskade, but got a text that the DJ booked to spin at our daytime space for the late night party was having technical difficulties, so I ended up swinging back to DJ the party. All of the nighttime programming had been top secret and I had no idea what the party was, but on arrival I was informed it was a private party for LCD Soundsystem's family and friends to celebrate their documentary film premiere, so I got to play all the Holy Ghost!, The Smiths, Bag Raiders, etc. that my heart desired. At the end of the night I came to the parking lot to find the rental car buried in snow, and got lucky that a group of random people helped me push it out.
Sunday, January 22 - Sunday was when things fully got into motion at the TR Suites. The DJ lineup included San Francisco's Daisy O'Dell, Los Angeles' Mr. Best and NYers Terry Urban & Julian Cavin and myself. They kept everyone energized while Lil' Jon, Omar from "The Wire," and various other stars tore through the suites. With a full set of DJs, I finally had a chance to run around town, stopping by Gen Art and the "Entertainment Tonight" suites, catching an HBO panel filming at Blue Iguana, and being apprehended by security trying to sneak into films. That evening I had to do promotion for my Sundance mix release . Then it was time to check out deadmau5 performing at HarryO's and the 4am DJ roster going late into the night at Tao to take full advantage of the final night. I woke up this morning still in my boots, and packed up equipment for a flight back to New York.
Images via Silver Medallion