In 2009, DJ magazine Mixmag held an online poll for dance music enthusiasts to vote on who they thought was the ‘Greatest DJ of All Time’. They did just that and the prestigious award went to one super-famous Dutch superstar DJ – Tiësto. But how exactly did Tijs Michiel Verwest rise to the number one spot?
After cutting his teeth at his small hometown club, Tiësto created a name for himself in his native Netherlands in the mid-90s with compilation releases from his co-founded label Black Hole Recordings. But it wasn’t until his epic 11-minute remix of Delerium’s Silence, featuring the dreamy vocals of Sarah McLachlan over Tiësto’s hypnotically repetitive beats, that he became a worldwide name.
Next came a series of accomplishments which any DJ would drool on his decks over: he was the first DJ ever to play at an Olympic Games (Athens, 2004), he pioneered the concept of epic DJ-centric concerts with six-hour sets and he was nominated for a Grammy in 2008 for his album Elements of Era. This is all in addition to regular releases, albums and remixes, notably 2004’s Adagio for Strings which is still one of Tiësto’s best-known tracks.
As his popularity increased, so did America’s interest in electronic and dance tunes. Tiësto’s well-received 2009 album Kaleidoscope is a sure sign of this. The album features a host of artists from non-electronic genres like Tegan & Sara, Nelly Furtado and Sigur Rós’ Jónsi singing alongside Tiësto’s dance beats, showing how electronic music had infiltrated the mainstream. And the trend has only grown since then. He played a stadium DJ gig to 26,000 raging ravers in LA last September – the largest-ever solo DJ event stateside – after finishing an extensive US college tour.
While the W Hotel’s Great Room has a capacity slightly below 26,000 people, we’re nevertheless sure that Tiësto will deliver big sounds this fortnight. Tickets don’t come cheap for this one – but if you manage to nab a VIP one (a cool $2,300 in advance or $2,500 at the door) you can get access to the exclusive rooftop pool party where you might just rub shoulders with the greatest DJ of all time.
Tiësto spins live at the W Hotel on Friday August 3. Tickets are $2,300-$1,800 in advance and $2,500-$1,988 at the door. Click here for more info and click here to read our Q&A with Tiësto.
Photo courtesy of Flickr: Dariusz