Football was in the air last night as El Traffico (LA Galaxy and LAFC) landed in Los Angeles accompanied by what could possibly have been the most important sporting event for electronic dance music ever held in the city. Many gathered at the stadium for the match, but at Evolve Project LA a crowd several hundred strong turned out to root for their favorite industry teams and DJs.
It was a scrimmage match for the ages with the most influential leaders in the electronic music business - and the icons of stage that fans rarely get a chance to experience any more intimately than a person can in the back of a crowd at a local festival. After the all-day Copa Del Rave event last April succeeded to the tune of nearly $12,000 donated to VH1 Save the Music and Beats in School, but this year the event saw unprecedented support from heavyweight sponsors like Perfect Hydration, Tullamore Dew, and Red Bull. It bolstered the impact of attendance by Diplo, Ardalan, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs (TEED), Amanda Panda, Zen Freeman, Born Dirty and Borgore - just to name a handful of the icons who made it out to play.
Also, on the scene showing support were industry luminaries like Anna Lunoe, VNSSA, Rybo, and Steingold. Between the raffle, donation bar, taco and ticket sales, fundraisers for the day’s event tallied an estimated $20,000 to benefit the MusiCares Foundation - a world-class charity from the Grammy Awards offering financial and health support for those in the music industry who need it most.
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Of the occasion, Ardalan Noghre-Kar, who performs as Ardalan with Dirtybird and is the founder of Copa del Rave, told EDM.com, “I never thought I’d have an opportunity to see a dream come true or to watch it become bigger than I thought it could be.” He leaned back in his chair and took a deep breath as if to soak in the moment. “It’s majestic having so many different parts of the industry here playing together in a way that takes the edge off. Plus, they’re playing for a good cause.”
Teams were fully comprised from the highest echelon of movers and shakers in electronic music today. Smashing teams like Beatsource, Future Classic, Live Nation, Mad Decent, Native Instruments, Red Light Management, Three Six Zero and an all-star agency amalgam called Liamous United brought ferocity, while proper house beats kept the tempo up throughout the day.
Defending Copa del Rave champions Red Light Management were a dominating force on the field in all their matches. The team had only a few upsets but remained undefeated. By the end of the night the general consensus was that if any of the other teams had a chance it would be Liamous United, which consisted of leaders from juggernaut firms like Infamous PR, Liaison Artists and 2+2 Management. With the grace and lethality of a pack of velociraptors, they seemed have the edge on strategy. When matched with the stonewall defense of Red Light Management, though, in the end it was Red Light who emerged the victor.
"Huge thanks to all the DJs, teams, sponsors and volunteers who came out and gave it their all to help make the day a success.” Copa del Rave co-founders Alastair Duncan, Jonathan McDonald and Ardalan said in a statement following the event. "We may have lost in the final again, but football was the winner today. We look forward to seeing everyone back on the field for Copa del Rave soon."