Fri, Nov 21, 2008 - Page 15 News List

THE VINYL WORD

STAFF REPORTER

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Spunite, one of the most influential online dance music communities in Taiwan, was originally created to host videos related to the rave scene. With more than 10,000 registered members, it has evolved into a popular forum for dance music fans and DJs, a reliable source of party information and a production brand that runs events across Taiwan.

Spunite’s founder, Brian Tsai (蔡家偉), organizes and funds the brand’s parties.

Tsai grew up in the US and moved to Taiwan after graduating from the University of California, Los Angeles. He now runs a manufacturing, marketing and import business in Tainan. So how did a businessman get so deeply involved with the dance music scene in the first place? “When I first got back to Tainan, I’d go to Taipei to party with my friends from the US. But the ABC [American-born Chinese] scene I was in, especially in Taiwan, was simply about social status and getting laid. I quickly became disenchanted with the whole thing,” Tsai says.

“One day, some guy gave me a flyer to a rave party in Tainan. I went to the event and loved everything about it — the people, the music, the inspiration. The more I learned about the rave scene, the more I saw myself getting involved.”

Masago Beach Party in Tainan is the second and perhaps best-known of Spunite’s events. Held annually in October for the past eight years, Masago is reputed among ravers to be a must-go gathering. Revelers come all the way from Taipei and Taichung to participate, and despite each year’s struggle to obtain a permit, Tsai keeps the bash up and running.

“I think most people really enjoy Masago,” he says. “They like the venue and overall vibe. They can let go and be a little crazier. Maybe it’s the uncertainty of it all — people always come to the event thinking it will be the last. It makes for a little bit of the carpe diem vibe that I love.”

Tsai describes Spunite parties as an “introductory course” in electronica. “We try to make them more comprehensive and welcoming to people outside the scene. Often we are misunderstood as being very ‘commercial,’” he says. “But our ultimate goal is to get more people involved.”

Tonight Spunite hosts Playground, a trance-oriented party at Luxy featuring DJs Ju, Code, Blue and Racy, along with some games, giveaways and a special 40-minute slot dedicated to classic tracks by Paul van Dyke.

Playground at Luxy, 5F, 201, Zhongxiao E Rd Sec 4, Taipei City (台北市忠孝東路四段201號5F). Admission is free before 11pm, NT$600 after.

On the Net: www.spunite.com/phpBB/

And now a little something for tomorrow: Down to the Nitty Gritty at Deluxe — one of the last JAM sessions before hosts Jr and Megan return to Canada. Joining them will be Scottyballer, Vdub, Schizm, Digit and Cap spinning house and hip-hop until 5am.

Nitty Gritty at Deluxe, 2F, 2, Nanjing E Rd Sec 4, Taipei City (台北市南京東路四段2號2樓). Admission is NT$400.

— QUEEN BEE

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