The Madness of Crowds
“Dance” and “revolution” belonged in the same breath long before an arcade game had kids stomping along to EDM remixes. Clubs have long been the nerve centers of movements and the breeding grounds of countercultures—safe spaces for marginalized communities, where race and gender and class all seem to melt away in a cacophony of lights, movement, and rhythm. (For proof, look at the origins of New Orleans bounce music, Miami bass, Chicago house, and West Coast G-funk—not to mention the Pulse nightclub shooting, a direct hit at the heart of a community.) International DJ Jasmine Solano (you may recognize her as half of the music duo Electric Punanny, or from her MTV series Scratch the Surface, or from her multiple world tours) knows this better than most; in college she created a major dubbed “music activism quest” (heavy on both music production and sociopolitics), and last year she founded the Unity in Color movement, a worldwide photo series showing how intersectional feminism looks across the globe. Here, the badass musician and activist shares what it’s like to create a space where people can experience pure joy.
Story producer: Mikki Halpin. Producer, DP, editor: Rosanna Peng. Gaffer: Graham Wade. Stylist: Eleanore Guthrie. Sound recordist: Destiny Farrant. Photographer: Julia Lowe. PA: Jorge Luis.