By Sarah Bennett
By Adam Lovinus
By Jena Ardell
By Nate Jackson
By Gustavo Arellano
By Nick Keppler
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By Alex Distefano
Photo by Mike McGillDJ Daniel is the cuddliest DJ we know. Just look at him! Look at that cute, little, cuddly-wuddly DJ face! Don't you just want to scoop him and his turntables onto your lap and make him tell you about DJ things? He can, you know! He could school your ass! Circle of fifths? DJ Daniel knows it! The way you have to pay attention to the keys of songs in order to mix seamlessly? DJ Daniel is all about that! The way you speed up a song at the key changes? Hello, DJ Daniel's momma didn't raise no fool! What's more, he can do impressions of all the different genres of dance music! What other DJ will do that for you? Paul Oakenfold won't! Danny Tenaglia won't! Kevin and Bean won't!
The following is an in-his-own-words, up-to-the-minute list of tracks DJ Daniel finds indispensable:
1. Afro Medusa, "Pasilda" (Vocal Bizz) Amazing record! I first heard it while I was partying in Miami during the Winter Music Conference. Even though I was barely able to stand when I heard this song, even though I don't remember anything that happened that week, I remembered to buy this song. The crowd went frenzied when they heard this song, and it even works in Orange County.
2. Miguel Migs, "Take Me to Paradise" (Naked Music) I know this one is a little dated compared with recent Naked Music releases, but I get so many requests by dancers who are just discovering this groovy track released by the West Coast's premier house label.
3. The Unlikely Lads, "Two of a Kind" (2020vision) From the U.K. Damn groovy. It was forgotten in my record crate for a couple of months. Now I'm rocking it like it's new!
4. Depeche Mode, "Dream On (remix)" (white label) It's a white label, so I don't know who did this remix, but if it wasn't by Moby, shoot me!
5. Speaker Junkies, "Drifting (Artizen's remix; DJ thee-o & bitwise)" (acropolisRPM) Yes, it's a band I manage and produce; yes, it's on my label; yes, it's a shameless promotion. But damn! This track is rockin' the crowd at Club Rubber, Studio 64, and Club Status.
6. Afro-Mystik, "Infinite Rhythm" (OM records) I saw them play at the OM tour recently. House/jazz percussion bands usually don't translate well on the dance floor, but the remixes by Swag and Ritma carry Afro-Mystik's intensity to my turntable and then the dance floor.
7. DA Sunlounge, "In the Middle" (Camouflage Records) I don't know how I got this record or when I bought it, but damn, it's so deep and smooth! House lovers will be on the dance floor; house haters will be sleeping on the couch.
8. DJ Sneak Presents, "Smokey Hill Street" (Magnetic) Disco, filter, house: yes, it's DJ Sneak! Another must have/must play for the current house DJ playlist. Don't leave home without it!
9. Boeing, "Fiesta" (Estatus Discos) House music from Brazil. Reminds me of Miami every time I play, hear or dance to it. Bienvenidos a Miami!!!
10. Chili Hi Fly, "Is It Love?" (Razor & Tie) Can't let go of it. Vocals very reminiscent of young Stevie Wonder. Great filters and vocoder effects. If you aren't dancing when you hear this, maybe you shouldn't dance.
dj daniel spins: every thurs. at grand royale at the shark club, 111 baker st., costa mesa, (714) 751-6428; sat. at club cupids at the sun theatre, 2200 e. katella ave., anaheim, (714) 517-7737; every mon. at club chemistry at tia juana's, 14988 sand canyon road, irvine, (949) 551-2998; every tues. at drink, 23600 rockfield blvd., lake forest, (949) 206-9390; and every wed. at josh slocums, 2601 w. coast hwy., newport beach, (949) 642-5935. RSVP.