Outside Lands is back this year with a wicked lineup of some great DJs. If you're headed out to Golden Gate Park this weekend, just remember to keep your ears peeled for these seven heavy hitters behind the decks.
1. Justin Martin is no stranger to playing in Golden Gate Park. The Dirty Bird Records DJ has been throwing parties there for years. A fusion of chunky, rumbling baselines with melodic tones is the best way to describe his style. Since the release of The Sad Piano 10 years ago, Martin has played the world over, finding the right blend to keep any dance floor, field or renegade underground wrapped tightly around his fingers. With the release of his latest album Ghettos & Gardens, Martin has come full circle as a wicked DJ and refined producer of a sound unique to our city. Don't miss this big bird.
2. The best party on Thursday night in this city is still Afrolicious at the Elbo Room. With a mix of world music, dub, reggae, disco and a plethora of Latin and African rhythms, it's a party that never quits. Helming it all is DJ-Producer Señor Oz, who week after week holds it down on the turntables, while his brother Joey plays with the band. If you really want to shake your hips and hear some well-curated music from a guy known to rock a party from the streets of Rio de Janeiro to SF, drop in on Señor Oz this weekend for a multicultural music experience.
3. A legend himself, Julius Papp has been DJing for over two decades. Influenced by the golden age of house music, Papp blends jazzy vocals with both uptempo and downtempo grooves to create unique studio productions that capture the magic of SF nightlife. Playing alongside Mark Farina, Papp's penchant for soul music fit in nicely with the Mushroom Jazz parties at the turn of the century, helping to further develop the San Francisco scene. He'll represent this weekend with a deep catalog of jams and gems.
4. Roy Davis Jr. is one dope DJ. After turning out house tracks for Ubiquity Records and being signed to Thomas Bangalter's label Roule, Roy Davis Jr. has gone on to explore dance music on a worldwide level. One of his biggest releases that captures the spirit of summer in about four minutes - "Gabriel" - will plaster a smile on your face as soon as you hear it echoing through the trees this weekend. This cat not only creates smooth sounds, but knows how to transfer them to the dance floor.
5. Mark Farina almost single-handedly shapes the dance scene in San Francisco. Bringing jazzy Chicago vibes with him, Farina began playing in The City back in the late 90s. His Mushroom Jazz series (now in its 7th volume) released on Om Records was both groundbreaking and unique for its fusion of various tempos, artists, samples and sonic waves of some seriously chilled out beats. Combining hip hop, acid jazz and house, Farina rallies a cult following anytime he's on the decks.
6. There has been a wave of old-school R&B and Motown influences seeping out onto dance floors lately, and MOM DJs have helped spread that gospel far and wide. For over three years, Gordo Cabeza and Timoteo Gigante have thrown their weekly party from Honolulu to San Francisco to New York City. They'e done some great remixes as well–in particular, the Hey Love (4am) edit originally by Stevie Wonder (who's also playing the festival). Their style and taste really capture the larger-than-life recording styles of the early 1960s with a backbeat anyone can bug out to. These guys have a freshness that dance music has been in need of for some time, so check 'em out.
7. The Space Cowboys are a collaboration of DJs and producers on a deep house mission. Zach Moore, ambassador of the SF crew, brings it this weekend in the Dome. Known for ripping up dance floors from Brooklyn to Burning Man, Moore brings highly energetic records with him wherever he roams. His sets are always a journey, laced with warm tones and driving beats that'll have everyone going off. With influences from house, to breaks, to tech house, Moore's got one seriously eclectic record bag.