Who else is doing what Dirtybird Records is right now?
The L.A.-based label — run by Claude VonStroke — has been dominating the genre and culture of house music by doing things its own way.
In recent years, Dirtybird has been critically recognized as one of the top independent labels in electronic music (by Billboard and Mixmag) for its all-encompassing work promoting, throwing events and moving forward the genre of house with its brand of tech funk.
Its Dirtybird Campout festivals, Dirtybird BBQs and signature artist tours (Double Dipped, Get Real and Set It Off) are frequent sellouts nationwide, and DB’s iconic cracked egg logo can be routinely spotted just about anywhere the BPM hits 115.
VonStroke and company showcased their genre dominance this past weekend at Miami Music Week (MMW) with an all-night takeover of Club Space.
With top label and artist parties going on all around for MMW, the Dirtybird Players party was the talk of the town — it sold-out almost immediately after its announcement back in February.
The event kicked off as day one of Ultra Music Festival was wrapping up, with a back-to-back performance by Omnom and Vnssa at 11:00 PM Friday night. The 20-hour house music extravaganza would pit all of its artists in this “vs.” format, slatting some of the biggest and most exciting names in the genre to perform together for hour-plus sets in Space’s Terrace and Loft rooms.
The crazed Dirtybird following arrived in large numbers early to catch the tantalizing sets of Ardalan vs. Sacha Robotti as well as Worthy vs. Mikey Lion. To keep the beat and buzz going throughout the night, Dirtybird saved some of its best acts for the early part of Saturday morning.
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Will Clarke vs. Shiba San kicked off at 5:00 AM on the Terrace, arguably Space’s biggest draw as a venue. The dance floor resembles a rave hosted in a rooftop greenhouse, with plants, disco balls, strobes and random artistic arrangements hanging from its awning.
The duo of Clarke and Shiba commanded the bulk of the crowd through 6:30 a.m., when house music's godfather Claude VonStroke took over for a surprise Get Real performance with tech house icon, Green Velvet. The night’s biggest stars revived the energy of the already eight-hour party, reigniting the crazy scene of dancers bopping around the dance floor, VIP rooms, and atop anything that was reasonable enough to climb upon.
While Dirtybird-heads spent most of the night dancing in the dark and low-lit neons, they finally received the first bit of day glow as the sun came up at 7:14 AM.
While most of its artists would eventually scurry off for other MMW appearances (or presumably sleep), the 47-year-old VonStroke would impressively remain in attendance well into Saturday afternoon.
His colorful camouflage tee-shirt and white Dirtybird hat were spotted all over the elevated stage behind the DJ booth as he cheerfully socialized with staff, artists and fans throughout the event.
That is, by and large, how Claude VonStroke has made Dirtybird into such an unavoidable brand in house music today. Whether he’s onstage performing or casually chatting with his devout following, Detroit’s VonStroke remains a humble, fun-loving figure bent on providing an entertaining and genuine experience with his label. Judging from this MMW event, it looks like he's doing just that.