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Summing up the Summit

by Josh Rubin in Culture on 30 March 2005

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As promised, Ari Kushnir delivers a full report on last week's Music, Multimedia, Miami conference. In addition to reporting on all the music festivities, Ari notes that "backed up with events like Art Basel and the M3 Summit, the future of Miami is brighter and hotter than the sand at noon." Read his story after the jump.

By Ari K with Scott Thrift

Last week the tides of music in Miami shifted from the antiquated spring breaker techno anthems to the rising waves of sonic talent and sound ideas.

Miami’s own M3 summit started out almost as a side note three years ago beneath the bloated umbrella of Ultra-Fest. Dancing beneath the moonlight at this years M3 Summit made you feel as if the Paul Van Okenflods of the repetitive beating past were somewhere far, far away – even though they were actually on Bayside supported by ‘30,000?’ fans.  

Born of the now sonically irrelevant Winter Music Conference, the M3 Summit 2005 presented so many new ideas and so much raw talent that this reviewer lived a sleepless week trying to cram it all in.      

The Summit was a finely tuned balance between shaking your ass and expanding your mind. A little less concerned with fist pumping techno and a little more curious about sophisticated sets of sound, the M3 Summit was a resounding success.

M3 was staged at the “Surf Comber Hotel” but the shows and parties branched out all across the sun bleached shock of Miami. The “Surf Comber” proved to be an ideal venue for a summit that would shift from a live set with ‘Los Amigos Invisibles’ to a keynote discussion from the founder of ‘My Space’ explaining the advantages of online networking communities.
 
The summit was so inundated with great shows, interactive media and technology forums that I found myself scheduling my days into one hour intervals. The entire week was a long distance blur of driving, parking, listening, dancing, tech-gadgets, meeting, smiling, sun bathing and thinking.

It was a fresh and positive feeling in Miami to be in transit between shows like ‘Sa-Ra’ and ‘M.I.A.’ Live at ‘I/O lounge’, ‘Mylo’ and ‘Diplo’ live at the ‘Sunset Sessions’, ‘Dublex DJ’ set at ‘The Raleigh’, ‘The APT’ vs ‘WMC’ party at ‘Buck15’, Jeremy Ellis, John Arnold, ‘Platinum Pied Pipers’ and ‘Osulande’ at ‘Opium Garden’, ‘Kool Keith’ at ‘I/O’, Peter Kruder at ‘The Hotel’, The ‘Tokion’ party with James Murphy, and on and on…

While 30,000 people hopped up and down in honor of glow sticks and 1997 the M3 Summit managed to draw a strong collective of forward thinking crowds into the bright and highly modern future of Miami.

Amidst the blur of confusion and performances I was sometimes caught and inspired by the moments when I noticed the curious excitement of a crowd waiting to hear ‘M.I.A.’ live or anxious to see what ‘Diplos’ set might sound like or interested to find out who the ‘Greens Keepers’ were.

It was this sense of curiosity that struck me about the potential of Miami. It’s the anticipation of moments like that at a full moon party on the beach that remind you of what Miami could be, and sometimes is.

Backed up with events like Art Basel and the M3 Summit, the future of Miami is brighter and hotter than the sand at noon.

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