My first Shambhala was in 2013 and it couldn’t have been a more positive experience musically. I went into it completely unaware, “Open heart and open mind” was the motto, and definitely found the entry point into the world of DJs there. In that time I’ve become a pretty big fan, though my heart still lies elsewhere. So, you, expert EDM person, might find my wishes and tastes rudimentary and lacking in things like DnB and aggressive dubstep and whatever the hell else y’all kids listen to these days. I’m like Danny Glover in Lethal Weapon (TOFTS) and just want tasty hip-hop and funk-heavy grooves. Some of these are realistic wishes and some of them are just completely Shambs-dreaming. Whatever. It’s a fun exercise either way.
The Polish Ambassador
Ideal Stage: The Grove
How perfect would the Polish Ambassador, “the World’s Funkiest Diplomat,” be for the Grove? His masterpiece record from last year, Pushing Through the Pavement, is taylor-made for the hippie, world-beat loving audience of the Grove. It’s laid-back, groovy hip-hop weirdness at its finest and all those tribal drumbeats would sound too fine blasting out of those lovely PK speakers (As most things do, admittedly). Sometimes I think the good homey PA is too laid back for a some of my EDM-loving friends, but he’d fit perfectly here and provide me with enough tasty funks to appease me if for some reason Opiuo doesn’t make the trip. I can’t stress how good of a fit this is. The Ambassador’s Permaculture Tour campaign is a fucking fascinating inspiration and makes me happy that someone with a voice is trying so hard to fuse his love of and care for the Earth with his hip-hop art. That’s a Victory.
Added Bonus: Maybe he could bring his homey and collaborator Mr.Lif with him to the Farm. That would be a most excellent addition and Lif could go and fuck some shit at the Village. See, I’m full of great ideas.
Ideal Stage: The Village
Okay, so the first year I went to Shambhala was 2013. I didn’t know a goddamned thing about electronic music of any kind. I’m sitting with my buddy and guide to the Cosmos, Hingle McCringleberry (An obvious alias) looking at the many acts, hearing who I might like and who I need to check out. I recognized the name Gramatik, but didn’t really know him. “Oh yeah, Gramatik, he’s pretty good.” Well, a semi-recognizable name on a bill full of unknowns (To me, that is)…count me in. See, thing is…GRAMATIK DIDN’T MAKE IT! (I think I read on his reddit AMA that he came down with strep-through or something.)
I managed to see Gramatik after that festival, in Vancouver at the Commodore, which is amazing in itself but is most definitely not Shamabhala. Oh if only I could see him on the farm. And then, more heartbreakingly because I had built it up in my head, he wasn’t there again in 2014. In the time since my introduction to the world of DJs, Gramatik has undoubtedly become my favourite. In the land of Titans, he is King. His blend of hip-hop, funk, dubstep, electro-swing and nearly everything else is pretty much an endless win. Could this be the year we finally get Gramatik (And hopefully his guitar player, Andrew Block, who dropped one of the best albums of last year) laying waste to all at the village? It had fucking better be! Or…or…or, ah fuck, there are no consequences save for me grumbling to my brother and friends in the weeks leading up to the festival.
Ideal Stage: The Village
Alright, here’s where we really get into the “WISH” part of this whole thing. I mean, I don’t realistically see Polish Ambassador suiting up for action in my head, but it FEELS like there’s an outside chance on that one. With Latyrx, I’m just shooting in the dark. Though, bear with me, there is some precedent here. Back in 2008 Lateef, one half of Latyrx, hit up Shambhala with Gift of Gab as the Mighty Underdogs, and their mutual friend and frequent collaborator Chali 2na had an epic performance in the Rock Pit (Now AMPhitheatre) in 2012, so maybe he recommends them.
Tangent: As I’m typing this I’m thinking there’s a strong possibility we get a Funk Hunters/Chali 2na set. I mean, they’re popping up on festival lineups around the continent and playing some shows together shortly. It makes sense that two alumni would come back together. Could you imagine the energy of Chali in Fractal? Fuuuuuck me.
But anyways, Latyrx would be tremendous here. Their Second Album is seeping with grimy and shiny electronic beats. “It’s Time” would blow everyone’s faces apart. And while all those blown apart faces might get messy, I’m pretty sure that everyone who survived would talk about the set with awe and wonder for years to come. Latyrx for the Village 2015!
There are gonna be four of these bad boys and I'll be back in a few days with Pt.2. Respect.