Gary Richards on where he’s been, what he’s learned, and starting over, premieres ‘No Retreat’ with Loge21 [Interview]

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Gary Richards on where he’s been, what he’s learned, and starting over, premieres ‘No Retreat’ with Loge21 [Interview]6E258AEB46AA40EFB93BCEB4B99FD32E

Electronic music consumers over the last two decades would be hard-pressed to pinpoint an individual who’s impacted the dance music event space harder than Gary Richards. Since the 1990s, Richards (also known musically as Destructo) has taken his talents miles above their subterranean roots, largely helping shape the Southern Californian rave scene, relentlessly seeking new ways to secure dance music a more tangible, industry-wide foothold. From championing a quaint little get together, now known as Electric Daisy Carnival (incepted under the ‘Magical Mickey’ masthead, from when the event series bore Richards’ earmark in the ’90s), to hatching the now-legendary HARD Events, which bred the still fervently attended Holy Ship! and HARD Summer, he’s exuded a visionary’s proclivity for predicting (and propelling) the next electronic it thing oozing the je ne sais quoi that really makes an event stand above the rest.

Gary Richards on where he’s been, what he’s learned, and starting over, premieres ‘No Retreat’ with Loge21 [Interview]Destructo3

Richards not only has a promoter’s penchant for garnering the excitement needed to get ideas off the ground, but a masterful musician’s tact to make them stick. A desire to liven up a scene subject to cyclical staleness served as the impetus for Richards’ most recent brainchild, branded AMFAMFAMF (All My Friends).

“The landscape is very competitive,” Richards said of picking up shop in 2017 after a decade at HARD to breathe life into yet another new endeavor. “There’s a lot at stake now and business people don’t want to see new things pop up. But dance music’s all about new and fresh and that really can’t be stopped.”

Though, despite the daunting nature of starting over in one of the most volatile industries in existence, the All My Friends event train gained almost instantaneous headwind, perhaps due to Richards’ own reputation preceding him. The first edition of the company’s cornerstone party, FriendShip Cruise, amassed thousands for its four-night maiden voyage aboard the Celebrity Equinox to the Caribbean. With it, came a colorful stream of genre-traversing acts, from Boys Noize to Busy P, RÜFÜS DU SOL to Rico Nasty. Richards’ seemingly curious curation must have struck a resounding chord, as the 2020 cruise is already 70 percent sold out.

Gary Richards on where he’s been, what he’s learned, and starting over, premieres ‘No Retreat’ with Loge21 [Interview]Destructo1

In addition to a stint captaining Def American’s A&R sector under the emphatically accomplished eye of pioneer producer, Rick Rubin, driving innovation in the music industry is in Richards’ DNA. His father, Barry Richards, a concert promoter and prominent radio personality of the late ’60s and early ’70s, made sure his son’s sonic sonar was firing on all cylinders before he hit puberty, ensuring his kids got to catch everyone from Rick James to Black Sabbath. Barry himself is known for helping to introduce progressive rock to East Coast radio stations in his time. Quite ironically and somewhat timelessly, Barry certainly imparted his intuition and curative periphery to his son, as they stood on the precipice of a consequential musical uprising Barry never saw coming. Barry, it seems, believed Eminem when he quite comically announced “Nobody listens to techno,” on 2002’s unforgettable “Without Me.” Little could Barry have known at the time that Gary would famously sample the line years later for for his 2015 club sensation, “Techno.”

“My dad was always like ‘Don’t mess with that [electronic] music cause no one likes it,’” Richards said. “20 years later, he called me up and was like ‘Hey, what’s a Major Lazer?’”

Gary Richards on where he’s been, what he’s learned, and starting over, premieres ‘No Retreat’ with Loge21 [Interview]Destructo2

With this perpetual irreverence for convention as a promoter/organizer, so comes Richards’ success as DJ-producer, Destructo; a success which can be characterized as a career-long dedication to discovering strange new ways to merge the house and hip-hop domains, which historically has been tough to do properly, even despite the two genres’ inextricably shared origins. Richards maintains his success as a musician is innately linked to his success on the business side of the coin.

“I think when you’re just a concert promoter you’ve never really been in the artists’ shoes, so you don’t really understand the nuances—especially DJing electronic music,” Richards said of his entrepreneurial edge amidst a capitalism-catalyzed sea of eager competitors.

Gary Richards on where he’s been, what he’s learned, and starting over, premieres ‘No Retreat’ with Loge21 [Interview]Destructo Busta Rhymes Fkin Sht Up

Securing collaborations with rap icons like Ty Dolla $ign, YG, Yo Gotti, and Busta Rhymes, Destructo’s music soon became something of a G-house archetype: flippantly feel-good tracks for a night out up to no good. However, his latest record, a Dancing Astronaut exclusive, strides outside the hip-hop-predicated mold of his most notable works, for what Destructo himself dubs his “hardest-hitting track yet.”

“No Surrender” is a bass-driven battle cry primed for the perennially raucous festival frontlines. Bolstered by Parisian bass house duo, Loge21, the track employs Richards’ own thunderous, Sparta-inspired vocal cut. Destructo isn’t asking this time; he’s just cutting to the chase and coaxing listeners directly to dance floors.

AMFAMFAMF recently announced dates for both its Seattle and LA dates— Seattle will see a July 4 affair with Chris Lake and Justin Martin in tow, while LA’s October 19 – 20 event roster still remains a mystery. Though, as Richards’ newest festival property continues to build brand equity within a heavily diluted electronic events circuit, Richards’ is already sure of All My Friends’ longevity, noting it is one of his most important entrepreneurial accomplishments so far. “With that it’s the same Gary, just a different name,” says Richards. And if the last 20 years of dance music events are any indication—if it bears Gary Richards’ name, it’s going to be a hit.

Learn more about AMFAMFAMF’s Seattle and LA dates here.

Destructo and Gerry Gonza send heads rolling with ‘Rubber Band’

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Destructo and Gerry Gonza send heads rolling with ‘Rubber Band’Destructo

Everything’s bouncing but checks in Destructo‘s latest All My Friends label offering, ‘Rubber Band,’ with longtime club staple, Gerry Gonza.

Gonza and Destructo (real name, Gary Richards) have been aligning production savvy for a few years now, beginning with Gonza’s remix of Destructo’s “4Real” in 2017. The pair soon followed up with a full-fledged collaboration, their off-the-wall club stomper, “Shots To The Dome.” In a similar vein, their latest, “Rubber Band,” fires slapping percussion and rolling bass lines from all cylinders. The house-heathen frenzy stutters its way into an infectiously ostentatious vocal hook, followed by an onslaught of strobe-reminiscent synth pulses and percolating bass.

While Destructo’s prolific involvement in the LA and national event circuit (founding HARD Events and since establishing his already-flourishing new AMF imprint and coinciding festival series) speaks for itself, Gonza continues working towards solidifying household acclaim. Known for his drum-bolstered live sets, Gonza certainly has friends in high places. In addition to snagging multiple auspicious releases on CONFESSION and Night Bass, last year he followed hard house patriarch, Tchami, on tour across the US. Gonza’s found himself in good company yet again, as “Rubber Band” denotes.

FriendShip to set sail again in 2020

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FriendShip to set sail again in 2020Friendship Cruise Credit Jake Pierce

After embarking on a memorable maiden voyage in late 2018, FriendShip is set to sail the seas again in early 2020.

In a New Year’s Eve Instagram post, the festival shared the exciting news that FriendShip would be returning January 6-10, 2020. The Instagram post noted that “everyone on the Maiden Voyage will have first dibs” and promised “more details to follow soon.”

The inaugural edition in December 2018 boasted a lineup including RÜFÜS DU SOL, Boys Noize, Dixon, Claptone, and countless others during its sail from Miami to the Bahamas’ CocoCay. Despite a brief return to port after a medical emergency on the day it set sail, the new floating festival venture from Destructo had fans clamoring for spots on the ship, with more than 1,400 cabins selling out in less than 48 hours after going on sale.

Keep an eye on the FriendShip website here.

Photo credit: Jake Pierce

H/T: Billboard

Destructo and Yo Gotti throw an off-the-wall house party in new ‘Loaded’ video

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Destructo and Yo Gotti throw an off-the-wall house party in new ‘Loaded’ video29512997 10156053935811745 9020202859758567646 N

Approximately one year after the track’s release, Destructo aka, Gary Richards, has released an official video for “Loaded” featuring Memphis rapper, Yo Gotti. Crowned for tracks like 2016’s “Down In the DM” and 2017’s “Rake It Up” (illustriously remixed by Diplo and Party Favor), Gotti stood as the ideal candidate for another G-house-meets-hip-hop hybrid. The pair seemed to have seen it fitting to honor the holiday party season by giving the record an off-the-wall visual.

Directed by Tuck Tripp as a WorldStarHipHop exclusive, the video trails a distorted camera view of an irreverent, explosive Hollywood house party. There’s some additional, brightly colored animation at work, simulating the trails and hazy visual encircling of a hallucinogenic experience.

From curating a stacked lineup at his inaugural LA-housed All My Friends Music Festival, to collaborating with Chris Lake, Richards has made a lot of noise in 2018. He’s due to kick off the new year with his Let’s Be Friends Again tour.

EDM Sauce Presents: The Dance Music Industry Members Of The Year

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Looking back at 2018, dozens of noteworthy events took place. In many ways, 2018 was as divisive of a year in dance music as it was in US politics. Scandals rocked the industry, hallowed legends passed away, artists developed brilliant new styles, and millions of new fans were indoctrinated into the genre that we love.

The post EDM Sauce Presents: The Dance Music Industry Members Of The Year appeared first on EDM Sauce.

Gary Richards’s Friendship music cruise is hosting a four-person cabin giveaway [Enter Here]

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Gary Richards’s Friendship music cruise is hosting a four-person cabin giveaway [Enter Here]Friendship Music Cruise 1

HARD Events (HARD Summer, Holy Ship!) founder, Gary Richards is extending an invite to his sea-bound get together, the Frienship Music Cruise, consisting of merely a few thousand of his closest friends. One lucky winner will secure a four-person cabin aboard the awe-inspiring, amenity-filled Celebrity Equinox cruise ship.

Organized by Richards’s new AMFAMFAMF event brand, the cruise will sail from Miami to the Bahamas December 11-15. Lining the walls of the party-prepared vessel will be alluring acts from all ends of the electronic continuum, from Rüfüs Du Sol to Boys Noize to Anna Lunoe, to Destructo (Richards) himself. The giveaway is running through October 1. So for those seeking to indulge their penchant for warm-weather inside broad sonic landscapes and stave off stark winter woes aboard one of the most luxurious cruise ships on the planet, the Friendship Cruise has the answer.

Enter to win here. For more info on the festival itself, head here.

FRIENDSHIP Cruise unveils supremely heavy roster for its maiden voyage

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FRIENDSHIP Cruise unveils supremely heavy roster for its maiden voyageHoly Ship

Don’t call it a comeback; having moved on from his HARD brainchild in pursuit of the greener pastures of LiveStyle, Destructo has been fully immersed in building up his All My Friends brand from scratch. It’s safe to say he’s been doing a mighty fine job, unveiling a diversely-curated All My Friends festival to debut in Downtown LA, and also announcing a brand new cruise ship event in February of 2018.

FRIENDSHIP cruise is now sailing full steam ahead toward its maiden voyage, and to celebrate, Destructo and his colleagues have unveiled quite the heavy lineup for its proceedings. LSDreamBrillz‘ experimental new alias will be making an appearance, alongside headliners RÜFÜS DU SOL, Claptone, and Boys Noize.

There seems to either be a Life&Death or Innervisions takeover of some sort as well, with DixonÂme, and DJ Tennis also making an appearance on the lineup. Josh Wink, Peggy Gou, and Jackmaster are some other underground talents on the roster, while on the bass front FRIENDSHIP invites EPROM, Josh Pan, and YEHME2. What’s more? There will be even more names unveiled as time goes on.

Learn more information on tickets, travel, and more here.

FRIENDSHIP Cruise unveils supremely heavy roster for its maiden voyageFriendship Cruise Destructo

Destructo will bring brand new music festival to LA called All My Friends

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Gary Richards (aka Destructo) has been grinding his way through the music industry since the early 1990s, curating festivals such as Hard Summer, Holy Ship! and more recently, Friendship, a new music cruise experience.

Now, as president of the major event producer LiveStyle, he’s bringing a whole new music festival to Los Angeles called All My Friends. The festival is presented by the company’s entertainment brand, AMFAMFAMF, and will be situated in the heart of downtown LA’s Arts District at ROW DTLA. The area is a unique location for an event of this magnitude, as it is essentially a creative space and shopping district. Attendees can venture outside the festival grounds and will have access to premium shopping, restaurants and 30,000 square feet of local artwork.

The festivities will be a two-day endeavor on August 18-19. Early bird tickets go on sale at 9 a.m. PST on Thursday, April 12. Tickets can be found here and readers can visit ROW DTLA’s website for more information.

Gary Richards’ FRIENDSHIP cruise is already sold out, because of course

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Destructo Press

When electronic music maven Gary Richards announced his newest event, FRIENDSHIP, would be setting sail from Miami all the way to Coco Bay in the Bahamas, the wave of excitement in the dance community was high. As Dancing Astronaut first reported, the man also-known-as Destructo’s new venture would be backed by his own, and newly minted, AMFAMFAMF banner aboard the Celebrity Equinox December 11–15.

Now, AMFAMFAMF announced that cabins are no longer available for its inaugural sailing. Despite no lineup yet unveiled, 3,000 FriendShippers placed their trust in Richards’ ability to man the FRIENDSHIP’s maiden voyage and make it one to remember. FRIENDSHIP sold-out within less than 48 hours — because of course.

Richards has undoubtedly built an irrefutable reputation in the industry over the years as the founder of HARD Events and the current president of LiveStyle. As such, FriendShippers can expect some of the best international music acts aboard the ship, and though the lineup will surely prove to be an impressive feat, the four-night venture promises immeasurable beauty in itself.


Breaking: Gary Richards to launch new cruise party, ‘Friend Ship’

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During a DJ performance as Destructo producer Gary Richards announced to a packed crowd at Output in Brooklyn, NY that he has begun setting plans into motion for a new cruise ship festival. According to those in attendance, Richards indicated the vessel would be hailed as “Friend Ship.”

No other details were revealed as to when the ship would set officially set sail, but Richards’ recent career shakeup means it will likely fall under the LiveStyle events umbrella.

The founder and former CEO of HARD Events departed that company after a rumored shakeup with parent company Live Nation last year, and has since moved onto greener pastures in a new role at LiveStyle Entertainment, the resurrected company of formerly bankrupted SFX.

According to attendees, Destructo also played two unreleased singles for his crowd, one featuring Snoop Dogg and another with Busta Rhymes who he brought out as a special guest. Watch the fun via some fan captured footage below.

Photo: Rukes.