Stream ‘EDC 20-Year Playlist Series’: 2002
Commemorating the 20th anniversary of Electric Daisy Carnival, Insomniac has launched the EDC 20-Year Playlist Series, highlighting two decades of the most memorable tracks in dance music and EDC history. Every Thursday leading up to EDC Las Vegas 2016, we’ll present a hand-selected playlist reflecting every year of EDC musical history in chronological order and featuring the most pivotal tracks and artists from each respective era.
By 2002, EDC had already hit its first significant milestone—celebrating its fifth incarnation the year prior—and had become known as the premier electronic event in the West Coast, with a growing fanbase outside of its original Los Angeles homebase.
Elsewhere in the entertainment world, Halle Berry broke new ground in 2002 by becoming the first woman of color to win the Academy Award in the Best Actress category for her performance as distressed mother Leticia Musgrove in Monster’s Ball. This year also welcomed the first season of American Idol, which featured original judges Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and Simon Cowell and tag-team hosts Ryan Seacrest and comedian Brian Dunkleman.
In the UK, the funeral for Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother at Westminster Abbey UK, drew more than 1 million people, who lined the streets to watch the ceremony. By land and air, Steve Fossett became the first person to fly solo around the world nonstop in a balloon, while beyond in the cosmos, the Mars Odyssey found signs of large ice deposits on Mars. In the soccer stadiums, Brazil defeated Germany 2-0 in the 17th edition of the FIFA World Cup hosted in South Korea and Japan, and the internet met the first public version of the Mozilla Firefox web browser.
The electronic world, too, celebrated a handful of milestones as a cohesive community in 2002. This year marked the release of a few key tracks, including Benny Benassi’s “Satisfaction,” which quickly became an international club anthem, and “Losing My Edge,” the debut single from American dance-punk heroes LCD Soundsystem, which helped attract hipsters to the dancefloor and paved the way for the alternative dance rock movement à la Justice and Steve Aoki. The 2002 British comedy-drama film 24 Hour Party People told the story of music entrepreneur Tony Wilson and his iconic Factory Records—home to Joy Division, New Order, and Happy Mondays—in Manchester, England, and highlighted the early rave culture days via Wilson’s storied Haçienda nightclub.
The “dubstep” moniker was born largely through the help of Ammunition Promotions, whose influential club night Forward>> at London nightclub Plastic People pushed the newly coined genre (a 2002 XLR8R cover story also helped popularize the term). Following an awkward and highly publicized on-camera confrontation with Moby at the 2002 MTV VMAs, Eminem released the now-infamous “Without Me,” which features the scathing diss at Moby heard around the world: “Nobody listens to techno” (Eminem would eventually learn otherwise). Also in 2002, legendary progressive house duo Sasha & John Digweed launched their ambitious US Delta Heavy Tour, a 31-city trek that attracted tens of thousands of concertgoers. The highly produced concerts, which featured laser shows and video production, were largely foreign within the DJ world at the time and helped trigger an initial shift toward similar full productions throughout the electronic music circuit.
Big moves were happening for Insomniac as well. This year featured the second edition of EDC in Texas, which took place at the Travis County Exposition Center in Austin. Insomniac also debuted the all-new Bassrush brand, which celebrates the various flavors and sounds of bass music. “It started as an old-school rave party,” says Insomniac CEO and Founder Pasquale Rotella. “It grew out of my love for bass music.” In Southern California, EDC moved to the Queen Mary Events Park in Long Beach (for the first and only time) and hosted the first-ever Bassrush Arena as a stage. The festival also featured a more limited artist lineup in an attempt to underline longer set times, including extended performances from Sasha and high-profile appearances from BT and other notable artists. It focused on the popular genres of the day, including trance and drum & bass, which you’ll hear across this week’s episode of the EDC 20-Year Playlist Series.
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