It’s 10pm at the restaurant TAO. A young unassuming man in a hoodie and beanie cap is holding court with various reporters in the middle of the restaurant. He takes time to chat with each person individually and is all smiles as he takes pictures with some of his fans. At the age of 22 Tim Bergling, known by his stage name Avicii, is already one of world’s top DJ talents. After making a big splash with his hit track “Seek Bromance” in 2010, Avicii took over the EDM scene in 2011. His track “Levels”, a sample of the late Etta James, was unquestionably one of the most popular songs of the last year. His melodic beats combined with some great vocals have helped bring electronic music to mainstream audiences throughout the country.
His mass appeal to American audiences is highlighted in the schedule for his latest “House for Hunger” tour. He is hitting many of the secondary markets in this country that artists of his stature might overlook. It speaks well for EDM and the talents of Avicii that a DJ could draw massive audiences in cities like Detroit, Milwaukee, and El Paso. It’s a great treat for fans in smaller cities that are often neglected.
The “House For Hunger” tour has committed to donate $1 million dollars in booking fees received from the tour to “Feeding America.” This hunger-relief organization is comprised of more than 200 food banks across the country, and the donation will help provide approximately 8 million meals to those in need.
Around 11:30pm it’s time to head over to the only major city stop on Avicii’s tour, one of the city’s most prestigious venues, LAVO. The door outside is mobbed as fans line up half the block waiting for the chance to get inside. As we descend into the club, the venue is already a zoo and it's still early.
On nights with a performer of this caliber, table minimums can be as high as $10,000. However, the steep price does not seem to be a factor as every table in the venue is filled. Bottles of champagne and high-end liquor trailed by waitresses with sparklers are paraded out every few minutes. In a nightlife scene that’s often viewed as vapid and pretentious, it’s good to know that a portion of the night’s proceedings are going to a great cause.
At 12:30am, the room erupts in excitement as Avicii is introduced. He opens with his signature track “Levels” and the room goes into a frenzy. The entire crowd is on their feet dancing, their LAVO glow sticks waving in the air to the melodic beats. Every one is donning their “I love Avicii” glasses and has a huge smile on their face as the prolific DJ delivers track after track of uplifting, high-energy dance music.
As the night goes on, the venue gets more and more packed, the dance floor becomes almost impossible to navigate. Regardless, the crowd is so into the music that everyone is still having a great time. The fanatical fans push towards the booth as he plays an awesome remix of his song “Alcoholic”. He throws his hands up in the air and the whole crowd follows suit.
After some intense jockeying, I make it off the dance floor and grab a drink. Avicii’s remix of “Sweet Dreams” aptly nick named “Swede Dreams” blasts from the sound system. We live in a society with attention spans nil to none, in which fans have an insatiable hunger for new tracks and many DJ’s play songs into the ground. It’s impressive how many of his songs from the last couple years still give you chills like it’s the first time you’ve heard it. The set was strong from top to bottom; unfortunately it had to end at some point.
Overall it was a great night for nightlife. LAVO continues to deliver with top talents and excellent hospitality. Avicii showcased why he’s such force in the EDM scene with an amazing set. A substantial amount of money was raised towards the one million dollar donation to “Feeding America,” helping to feed families in need throughout the country. The only thing left was to grab one of LAVO’s signature fried Oreos on the way out.
Sean is a blogger and nightlife promoter at various venues throughout the city.
Check out more of his articles and stories at www.hautenightlife.com
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