When a 15-year-old girl died from a drug overdose after she attended Electric Daisy Carnival at the Los Angeles Coliseum in 2010, L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was quick to question whether raves should be even be allowed at such a publicly owned venue.
Steve Aoki, along with will.i.am and other DJ luminaries, performed at that event. And last night Aoki was at the side of the man who wants to fill Villaraigosa's City Hall shoes:
The Hollywood-Silver Lake-Echo Park city councilman is widely seen as the hipster candidate for a mayor, a politician so cool he is mocked in a fake Twitter account:
Why aren't more people dancing with the wind? It's so liberating! #alonewiththewind
— Eric_Garcetti (@Eric_Garcetti) April 9, 2013
He's the City Hall leader who, more than any other in contemporary times, has encouraged clubland development in Hollywood and who is now embracing … the electronic dance music vote?
It's not that Garcetti is encouraging some of the more extreme shenanigans of nightlife, or that Villaraigosa is shutting out a generation. But how the two have approached electronic dance music culture comprises a great divide.
Last night the Garcetti campaign held a fundraiser that featured Aoki on the turntables and an appearance by Moby.
And if America hates hipsters, someone has failed to tell Garcetti, who seems to embrace the young and fashionable crowd despite its penchant for not voting.
“If you like electronic music, then L.A. is where the DJ scene is at,” he told the crowd at Avalon Hollywood last night.
“This party tonight literally could determine the outcome” of the race, he said. “If you were each responsible for 100 voters, this room could turn this election my way.”
Aoki went on to pull off his t-shirt, reveal his chest, and put on a Garcetti-for-mayor top, popping the graphics to the crowd's delight. Oh, and he DJ'd, too.
The EDM performer known for his stage antics didn't disappoint. He sprayed women atop their boyfriends' shoulders with champagne more than once and even spit it out from his mouth, showering the dance floor with bubbly.
Confetti filled the air as about 300 or so Garcetti supporters who'd paid $50 and up to attend pumped fists to Aoki's grating, over-the-top sound.
And when Aoki teased the crowd by waving his Garcetti t-shirt in front of them before tossing it out, people reached for it like it was Barry Bonds' last homerun ball.
Whatever you think of the candidates, we have a hard time imagining this kind of clubland enthusiasm for Wendy Greuel.
Then again, we have a hard time believing that L.A.'s core voters — Valley moms, South L.A. church ladies, Eastside city workers, Westside homeowners — care one iota who a DJ is endorsing for mayor.
See also: Steve Aoki: The Neon Punk of EDM.