“I don’t feel it anymore,” sighed a friend of mine, K, when I asked why he’s not heading down for Sasha at Zouk on New Year ’s Day. Now, this is a common vindication for retiring party-goers worldwide, not including North Korea, Libya and Burma (where you’ll be frowned upon, shot, buried alive or all of the above if you even shook an inch of your repressed bootie to electronic dance music). But what exactly is this feeling that my friend had lost? What deafening infection destroyed the aural stimulus of his mind?
What silent disease made him hang up those dancing shoes and chose slack over Sasha? This deserves a diagnosis.
I’ll base my findings on those that share similar characteristics to K. He’s a music lover first having been an avid dance music collector for a good 10 years. He consumes no detrimental liquids or substances of any sort when he hits the club, except on occasion when a Jägerbomb is shoved up his face, and with me, the Jägerbomb wins. He boasts a healthy attendance at gigs with some of the newest and more established DJs gracing our shores and the region. He’s open to ideas and concepts, embracing the new clubbing culture and respecting the old. He is never one to judge, be critical or assertive of his beliefs in what dance music should or should not be. At Sasha, it was the first time I ever heard the man go, “I don’t feel it anymore” and mean it.
Sure, it might just have been an isolated moment of insanity for him to say such a frivolous thing. But digging deeper into the disparity of his early club retirement, it does seem like a justifiable reason.
When I probed into what exactly does he not feel anymore, all he had to say was, “The people can’t afford it.” What people? Can’t afford what? K spoke of the environment, where he feels that most of the so called party-goers are neither receptive nor respectful towards the DJ anymore. Being spoon-fed top notch acts night in night out. Taking quality for granted. Asking for more. Getting greedy. Dressed to party like they just got out of bed. K had basically given up an environment that chipped away his love for music bit by bit and gave the music he loves a value that it doesn’t deserve.
How can an environment affect one so much? Who cares about these minions? Just do your thing. Love it your own way. But I guess in reality it can affect someone who loves the music so much, enough to give up on an environment that had the best intentions to empower it.
It wasn’t my place to tell him this but I told him anyway: That the heart won’t get hurt with what the mind cannot see and the mind won’t get hurt with what the heart cannot feel. Don’t be a living ghost; the dance floor is where one can come alive.
Now he sits at home, in his rocking chair with a downloaded mix on loop and a cup of tea.