FEATURE, SEPTEMBER 8, 2011
A real raver's critique: Just like the other "rave" article of so many years ago, you guys only wrote what any other mainstream media outlet would have ["The Agony and the Ecstasy," Kelsey Whipple]. I remember the time when the RFT was a great source of local investigative journalism and seven-page articles that would keep my interest because of the in-depth descriptions of the issues at hand. Instead, I read a glorified advertisement from a reporter who sounds like she was asked by someone who had only a passing interest in seeing themselves in the pages again.
It's upsetting that an entire portion of the population of "ravers" was left out (real ravers were marginalized, again, as always!) and that only the hard-line issues regarding drug use and its effects were highlighted. This entire piece lacked the soul that kept me reading the RFT for years, though it's not surprising that once again the new generation of writers has dropped the ball for its loyal readers.
I'm old, never jaded, always loved the music and hated the fact that the media focused only on the things that applied to maybe 10 percent of the crowd of people!
It's OK, though: We've always been here, we always will be here, and we'll still laugh as you pass by, so blissfully unaware as we party the night away in the places you abandoned long ago, wondering when you'll finally get the point.
Eric Ward, via the Internet
They grew up: While the article is severely lacking in many ways and doesn't at all accurately reflect the scene back then or the vibe, purpose or outcome of the reunion party, some of the comments here are unnecessarily hateful, mean-spirited, homophobic, etc. Kelsey Whipple definitely did not hit the nail on the head with this article, but one can only presume she tried to take as critical of a perspective as possible in order to seem informed about something she could not possibly be informed about, since she wasn't there to witness any of it in the first place.
The Oldschool Crew and the reunion party were never intended to revitalize a scene we outgrew. Everyone's egos aside, people just wanted to get together and party with friends they likely hadn't seen in ten-plus years, set to music they likely hadn't danced to in just as long. You were either a part of it or you weren't, and if you weren't, then the party wasn't necessarily meant for you. Take that as you may, but it's no different than a high school reunion: Either you went to that school, or you didn't.
People can bicker all they want about the history of the scene or whether rave is dead. If there is ever another reunion, it will be for the same exact reasons: to see each other again, remember the crazy-ass times we had together and hear the music we love(d). And, if it's anything like We Are Family, folks will still be partying well into the "morning after." Fuck all the rest; we're grown now.
Aaron Overfield, via the Internet
Everybody must get stoned: I think the RFT overall painted us old-schoolers as a bunch of washed-up drug addicts. I think they have failed to understand that 1) Drug use is a common fact of life, regardless if you are into "techno," country music or opera, for that matter, and 2) That most of us here from the Rave Gang and the Velvet Guard are in our 30s, 40s and, yes, 50s. We have normal day jobs, families to feed and, yes, bills to pay. We can't just go out every night anymore. We leave that to the college-age crowd, which is generally more into hip-hop to begin with and (like the majority of us in the past) more than likely to waste $100 on shots and beer than on blow, as this article is suggesting.
Bobby Ballistic, via the Internet
Don't know much about history: As someone who, as a teenager, encountered his first rave at the City Museum in 2003, I can say that Kenny's enthusiasm for dancing (and dance music) isn't necessarily a generational phenomenon. I remember listening to house music on the radio long before I'd tried "E" or been to a rave. I even remember hearing the commercials for Operation: Get Down and thinking to myself, "That sounds like fun," even while oblivious to what a rave actually was. Some things are just innate, I guess.
Now, unfortunately, it seems that the scene is all about posturing, terrible fashion and politics. Onlookers scowl at those dancing by the speakers with their bottled water in hand. Somehow along the way, this became "uncool," unless shaded by the veil of irony and social preoccupation. In that sense, I'm jaded in the opposite capacity — nostalgic to share a non-verbal, momentary connection with a fellow dance-floor buddy, but long past expecting it.
It's rare and special to encounter others who could care less about all the rest of it. But this article isn't about that. It's a recap of all the unfortunate drama that people like to focus on instead...which is interesting in its own right, but more of a history lesson than anything.
Nunya, via the Internet