In the city of Ottawa, Ontario, there was a longstanding tradition of really good Valentine's Day raves known as Deelite. In 2004, it was the 7th anniversary of the event, and given the propensity of the rave scene to celebrate meaningless and arbitrary milestones, a week of partying had been planned out with care. Well. Almost.
Each of the minor events had gone quite well - art shows, pool parties, something for everyone, basically. These small happenings were building up to 2 climactic weekend events - a club party on the Friday with German hard trance dudes Hennes and Cold headlining, and then a Saturday night extravanganza with Kevin Energy, Waxmaster, and DJ Duncan. Both events, of course, had a large smattering of local and semi-local acts in support, so logistically, the entire week was quite an undertaking.
I wasn't directly involved.. While I had attended Deelite 6 the year before and had a spectacular time, I was not comfortable getting into bed with one of the promoters traditionally involved in this event. JK, as we shall call him, had a reputation for flakiness that eclipsed even standard rave practices. While he did possess the capacity to on occasion pull off successful events, I had zero interest in being involved in any kind of financial relationship with him or his production company. At the time, Repent Tokyo and Synergy were being run in partnership, with the label handling the distribution of our records and releases and Synergy co-branding our events. My partner Ryan spent a long time soul-searching before he committed to becoming involved in Deelite 7. His desire to participate in the local landmark that was Deelite, and the possibility to do something that would really be remembered overcame his reticence to trust JK on such a large scale.
Friday night was a flourish of great beats, great times, and a fun atmosphere for everyone. While I had clearly seperated my finances from the events, I was in town for the weekend to both perform on the Saturday and to help my partner Ryan in any way that I could. This turned out to be looking after Kai Winter, the DJ half of Hennes and Cold who performed on Friday. We introduced him to such Canadiana as St-Hubert chicken and -30 Celsius tempertatures (to which Kai reacted, quite accurately, in the parking lot of a restaurant: "I am sorry, but FUCKING CANADA!"). Kai was a fun, easygoing guy who was really down for whatever, which was good, because there was a lot of last minute organizing to do that Saturday. And by last-minute organising, I mean we lost our venue.