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Miami Dance Tribes

From snake charmers to sand people, see how many of these you can spot during Miami’s big week

  • Words: Duncan Dick / Illustration: Ben Tallon
  • 24 March 2015
Miami Dance Tribes

Tick them all off...

> Spring Breakers

Varying from the genuine dance fan to the meathead bro to the Kandi kid to the underage vomit fountain, and notable for their flouro colours, statement tank top (boys), tiny bikini (girls), rucksacks, questionable 'rave' accessories and dilated pupils, these are the life-blood of the week, outdoing everyone else in numbers and enthusiasm by a ratio of 1,000,000:1.

> Auto-erotica

What could be more enjoyable than crawling up and down Collins Avenue at 10mph in a $400,000 penis substitute every day and night for a week? You've got a flash car, congratulations! Wow, is that the same jacket Ryan Gosling wore in Drive? Of course it is. Now fuck off.

> Bottle-service brasses

Nature will always find a balance, and wherever there are groups of desperate and unattractive men paying over the odds for designer vodka, there will be attractive women drinking them dry before moving on to the next table like a swarm of surgically enhanced, bodycon-wearing locusts. It's the circle of life.

> Jaded Industry Pros

Including: jet-lagged Brits desperately seeking cocaine and complaining that the hotel staff are too friendly; baffled Europeans trying to do deals when everyone else just wants to sort out guest list for Surfcomber; dressed-down vulture capitalists with the business ethics of a scientific calculator; and long-serving label-heads who bring the kids and spend every day on the beach.

> ​Hyper-aggressive security

It's not Miami Music Week without at least one story of a superstar DJ being rudely turned away from their own gig, a near-brutal beating over a guest list misspelling or a massively arbitrary and disproportionate response to VIP area encroachment that makes the rules governing an anthrax breakout at a government facility seem somewhat lax.

> DJ Cottage Industry

Armed with 10,000 business cards, USB sticks loaded with his latest mix (top 10 EDM bangers only), a stack of pouting publicity photos (wearing headphones because DJ!) and a carefully researched spreadsheet of networking targets, the fact that he can barely mix and has the same ear for a tune as a bag of sand won't stop him doing 'business' this week. Depressingly, it may well work.

> Slightly bitter veteran house DJs

While some ageing house legends have seen the dance music explosion lead to a new generation discovering their seminal work, many are left confused, angry, and feeling a bit ripped off by the idea of DJs who use sync buttons, music with no groove, giving away remixes, and cake throwing. In Miami they can depend on an appreciative audience for their sets – if not for their whingeing.

> Sunrise and people

Perhaps the best thing about Miami: the people you meet at the impromptu afterparty on the beach after the clubs close. It's party Darwinism in action as only the strong, the interesting, and those most badly adjusted to the time zone survive to roll spliffs, talk nonsense and miss flights. See you by the water!

[Illustrations: Ben Tallon]

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