If you’ve ever attended a Bassnectar set you know that the vibes, music and fans are unmatched.  However, a Bassnectar curated event is on a completely different level. I was fortunate enough to attend my first one, and now I will never miss another.

Lorin Ashton, known as Bassnectar, is extremely popular for the numerous events he hosts throughout the year.  Every year his adoring fans can expect special curated events, the most popular being: NYE 360, Halloween (although it has been confirmed the show will be skipped this year) and Bass Center.  This year, for the 10th Bass Center, Bassnectar returned to “The Mothership,” aka: the Hampton Coliseum; this sold out show was the best one of the year.

The weekend was full of surprises, special guests and the loudest bass I have ever heard. This event will surely go down as one of my ultimate favorites, and my respect for the man, Bassnectar, is at an all-time high.

The Venue

The Hampton Coliseum is a truly amazing venue – Bassnectar events have been held there in the past and it’s return was highly anticipated.  The tickets were all general admission, so attendees had the opportunity to roam from the stands to the ground level. Let me say, there was not one single erroneous spot in the arena; its concrete walls allowed the bass to bounce off and fill the entire room that created an intimate euphoric setting.

There were merch tables, alcohol stands and food vendors placed throughout the venue. There were a few water fountains that people were using to fill up water bottles and camel backs, but no free water stations. Cold water bottles were available for purchase.

The venue also had a type of ‘safe place’ called The Haven.  It was located away from the crowd and blasting music; the white tent was filled with wind pouch couches, games, goodies, a massage therapist, and more!  It made a great getaway and was always filled with people trying to relax.  The Ambassadors did a phenomenal job making sure everyone was comfortable and had everything they needed.  I loved this touch as it gave the option to escape the madness while still being fully immersed within the event.

The parking lot opened daily and hosted live music, flow art, yoga meet-ups, merch tables and independent vendors. The Lot was a place to meet up with friends, have a few drinks and prepare yourself for the night to come.


The Ambassadors 

Bassnectar is known for caring for his fans and the experience he provides them.  One way he shows his love to them is through the ambassadors – a selected group of fans that help run his events and assist during his sets.  At a festival set you can find the ambassadors handing out water to assure everyone is hydrated.  At his curated events, however, they play a much bigger role.

The Ambassadors at Bass Center made the event what it is – they had giveaways, treats, water, answers to the most ridiculous questions and much more. Anywhere you looked you would find an Ambassador fully stocked with supplies you may need.

Bassnectar fans are die-hard and in many cases won’t leave the rail or the set for any reason.  The Ambassadors are there to make sure people get to enjoy themselves while still being safe.  The crowd shows an amazing level of respect for them and even set a clear path for them as they went through with water and other necessities. The presence of the Ambassadors certainly added a safe and comfortable vibe to the weekend.

The Message

Bassnectar has never been shy about using his platform to voice political, religious or social opinions.  In fact, that is part of what makes him so appealing to many of his fans.  He incorporates images, sounds and quotes into all of his sets that reflect certain ideologies.

The second night of Bass Center he stopped his set to give the mic to Chase Iron Eyes, a member of the Lakota tribe at Standing Rock.  Chase Iron Eyes had the attention of thousands of people while he discussed Standing Rock – he is facing jail time for his efforts protesting at Standing Rock.  A montage of images and videos played behind him while he discussed that this stop at Bass Center was on his path to spiritual enlightenment.  The crowd chanted “water is life” with him while Bassnectar queued up the next song.

The crowd was given the information as pictured on the screen to text Lakota to 64336 for donations to Chase Iron Eyes and his people.  It was a deeply inspiring and humbling moment that shed light on an issue many people are unaware of.

To close out the night Bassnectar played Pink Floyd’s – “Money” over a montage of anti-Donald Trump and racism images.  The energy in the crowd was electric!  With such a large following comes backlash, but I heard nothing except great things in regards to this segment.

Bassnectar teaches his fans to stand up for what they believe in – it’s only then can we make a change.

The Music

You will never hear the same set twice when it comes to Bassnectar.  You can never guess or prepare for the music at one of his sets, and that has given him such a loyal following.  I’ve never been so blown away by a single DJ.  He was able to read the room this whole weekend and gave his absolute all every single night.

We got 2 hour sets (sometimes more) every night and after each set my group would say “That was so good there’s no way he can top it,” only to be in awe the following night.  I’ve never experienced a musical event quite like this, and to be honest I’m not even sure how to explain it.  To people interested in Bassnectar I always recommend listening to sets rather than individual songs – there’s something about his mixing and pure talent that electrifies a room.

I saw people head-bang for 2 hours straight, people crying, pounding the floor and some standing in complete and utter shock. Following each set the venue was full of excited voices discussing the songs and edits he played.

Crowd favorites:

  • Pink Elephants (I thought my head was going to explode when he played this)
  • Falling
  • Immigraniada 
  • Raw Charles
  • Empathy
  • Paracosm
  • Wildstyle Method

The openers were all very unique and added a great touch to the weekend.  We were treated to more bass music and softer artists like Cashmere Cat.  Opening up for a crowd of crazed Bassnectar fans can be intimidating, yet the openers were curated perfectly.

Bass Center X was quite possibly the best weekend of music and production I have ever experienced.


The Community

Finally, the reason Bassnectar fans are so die-hard: the community.  I’ve never been to a such a large event where I didn’t witness at least one fight or run into someone crying, or in a bad mood. Nonetheless, at Bass Center X I didn’t see a single one of those things.  Everyone was there for the music and a good time; it was a totally different vibe than a normal music festival.  I got the chance to talk to some attendees in order to sum up the vibes the BNF community emits:

Bridget has seen Bassnectar now over 30 times summed the community up in one word “love – there is just so much love”

Stephan and Brittani, who have attended over a dozen Bassnectar sets, said they love the community for how welcoming it is.

To sum it all up, the weekend was out of this world!  It was the music and  crowd of people who brought this experience to the next level.  If you’ve ever considered yourself a fan of Bassnectar I highly recommend checking out his next curated event. Cheers to a weekend I’ll never forget!

Posted by:Sarah Dickens

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