Friday, October 21, 2016

PI Update: Under The Island

Hmmm. What's going on over there beneath the No. 5 Bridge?
Blog reader Shawn T. sent us this daytime photo of the construction project going on aside the bridge and below STK.
Another look at it the other night along with a glimpse of the Neverland Tunnels project taking place beyond it.  This is the space underneath West End Plaza.
A view of the project as it approaches the waterway surrounding the Island.
We just don't know if this is still going to be the Neverland Tunnels or if that was quashed.  There have been no updates about it in a year and it's hush hush with our sources down on the Island.  It's going to be something.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

CW Update: CityWalk Promenade

Universal CityWalk has seen a good number of changes in the past couple years with many new restaurants opening throughout the complex. But when it comes to the nightclub district, now branded as the CityWalk Promenade, things remain largely the same as when we first started covering the complex shortly after Pleasure Island closed.  For our newer viewers who may not be familiar with CityWalk, here's a snapshot of what it's all about!
CityWalk's largest and most traditional dance club is The Groove. There was a time back in the 00's and earlier that this was a club that played EDM, or "techno" as we used to call it back then. In the post-PI era it's more of a fast-paced Top 40 featuring hits both old and new. It gets packed! A few years ago we published rumors of TG closing but that has proven to be false and in fact we've seen Universal invest greatly in the venue with improved DJ's, lighting, spraydowns and more.  It seems that it's here to stay!
The Red Coconut Club is a smaller dance venue that carries a Vegas ratpack vibe to it. They still have a live band at times and DJ's the rest of the time. The music is mostly Top 40 but there is also a popular Latin night on Wednesdays and you're likely to hear more EDM in here than at any other club in CityWalk.
Rising Star is a karaoke club where you're the star.  What makes it unique is that the club provides a band to support the singers and backup dancers too. In between sets a DJ plays Top 40. There are usually long lines to get in here too!
Bob Marley's is a unique Jamaican-themed venue that is a restaurant early turning into a reggae dance club later at night. Another unique feature is that it's mostly uncovered outdoors so weather can impact it during rare evening rains or cold winter nights.  The lines here can be long too!
Pat O'Brien's is a New Orleans-themed club that is two venues in one. There is an outdoor courtyard at the rear where DJ's often play and then upfront and inside is a dueling piano bar similar to JellyRolls at Disney and Howl at the Moon on International Drive.
Those 5 venues are what make up the ticketed part of CityWalkMargaritaville is a large restaurant that has a live band late at night playing Top 40 and Rock'n'Roll hits. While I have seen tickets scanned here several times, most visits have allowed free non-ticketed entry.
Latin Quarter was formerly a ticketed club featuring DJ's playing various genres of Latin music.  It closed and was replaced with Mexican restaurant Antojitos. Have only seen DJ's playing here for private events so it's no longer considered a nightclub.
With all the recent restaurant build-outs, the promenade section of CityWalk only has this one remaining space.  Inside it's a mirror image of the interior of The Groove. We're not aware of any plans to add anything here at this time.  One thing that has not changed at CityWalk since the Blog began covering it is the price of admission. Admission to a single club is still $7.00 while an all-club Party Pass is $12.77.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

This Weekend In Techno Town

There are good times ahead with Miami DJ duo GTA tomorrow night at The Beacham! Electrohouse.
Also tomorrow night, Techno returns to Peek Downtown with specialists Carlos Mendoza, Elias R and more! Techno / House
80's Night at The Abbey is back Friday night ft. live band Switch! Costume party!  80's.  
Friday nights at Sandwich Bar are always great nights for electronic music fans and this weekend they have original AAHZ DJ Chris Fortier!  Progressive House.
Also on Friday night, The Social has DJ duo Yolanda Be Cool (AUS) in what I believe to be a first-ever Orlando appearance!  Most famous in North America for their 2010 hit "We No Speak Americano".  FoxForce005 opens!  House.
Yet another Friday night open this weekend in DJ Jimmy Joslin & friends at Peek Downtown!  Breaks.
More girl DJ's than you can shake a stick at!  DJ Strife, DJ K8 & Vixen Stylee all for free at Shakai Lounge! Will get wild!  D&B.
More electronic music at The Social on Saturday night with Vancouver-based DJ Vanic (CDN).  EDM / House.
Another Saturday night option is DJ Thomas Jack performing over at Gilt Nightclub!  EDM / Dance.
Peek Downtown shows up on The Blog for every night this weekend (again) because great shows keep getting booked here!  This Saturday night they have DJ Fobia's "Everything Between Us" this time featuring DJ Just Steph (USA).  House / Deep House.

New downtown venue across from Tier Nightclub is called Bar B and this Saturday they have Sirius/XM DJ Liquid Todd (USA).  This is his first Orlando visit since 2013 when he opened for Paul Oakenfold at Vain.

DJ PatrickM will be playing this Sunday evening at Elixir downtown on Washington Street across from I-Bar.  Special free event!  House.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

PI Update: Night Island

Dropping by the Island on this beautiful Fall evening looking for entertainment.  STK had the doors open and there was a good crowd inside even at 9PM.
First time seeing veteran DJ Adam Wells playing here!
Bar was full but no one was dancing to the mix that ran from 70's Disco to more recent Daft Punk.
Adam Wells plays Thursdays & Sundays downtown at The Other Bar. I first met him back in 2011 at now-closed Dragon Room.
Over at the Waterview Stage where RRBC used to stand, a Latin band was playing.
Who says there's no dancing anymore on Pleasure Island!
And as Eddie Maserati shuffled to different live band over at the Lily Pad, a good time was had by all!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Concert Report: Butter-Bash @ Peek Downtown

Remembering the life of the late Adam Butterfield, this was Butter-Bash at club Peek Downtown this past Saturday night!
Arrived to find DJ's Rob Analyze & Chronic in the booth delivering Breaks!
I've seen their names on club listings for years but somehow this was the first time I've ever actually seen them!
Club was jammed!
Breakbeats all night long!!
Spotted behind the bar: Flash from the past bartendresses Jen & Lisa!
Spotted on the dance floor: Row 1: Mauricio of Prophecy; Row 2: DJ Andrez, Ira of Mazor Productions, Kris, Liz, Athena, Shelly; Row 3: DJ Prophet 808
Spotted in VIP: Christina, DJ J-Dub, DJ Sandra Cruz
Spotted on the dance floor: DJ JG$
Spotted at the bar: Joel with friend
Great set to support the spirit of the night!
Peek Downtown is Orlando's home of Breaks!
A good time was had by all!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Club Reports: Red Coconut Club, The Groove

Editors Note: For pictures from last night's ButterBash at Peek Downtown, please tune-in tomorrow.
Saturday night in the city and choosing to spend it at CityWalk at Universal Studios Orlando. A new flashing neon sign atop Pat O'Brien's shows Uni is continuing to invest in the venue.
Dropping by Red Coconut Club, located where Motown Cafe once stood.
The long-running Herb Williams Band was on stage when I first arrived playing Top 40 hits.
They played until midnight and kept the dance floor pretty crowded!
Playing between band sets and full-time beginning at midnight, the one-and-only DJ Leony (USA).
Trying to keep the post-band crowd from leaving, he opened with the "Cupid Shuffle"!
It was effective as no one seemed to leave!
With DJ culture alive and thriving, it was wise of RCC to move the booth from that perch way up there in the background to the current location directly on the floor.
Spotted on the dance floor: Disco Duke from 8TRAX
Of course we know DJ Leony from his years at now-closed Latin Quarter and prior to that for his weekly EDM mix show on XM Satellite Radio's BPM.
Leony hosts Latin Night here at RCC on Wednesdays and this Top 40/Dance night on Saturdays!
Next over to The Groove where there was a long line waiting to get in.
Saturday night resident DJ M-Squared in the booth when I arrived.
Club and dance floor were packed!
About five of his first ten songs were EDM so maybe we're making progress here, lol!
Considering we're between tourist seasons, nice surprise seeing TG packed!
Besides a few moments of EDM, his fast-paced set consisted mostly of Classic Hip Hop & Top 40 hits all presented in snippets of about a minute each.
Spotted in VIP: Disco Duke
You can never go wrong with Go Go girls!
At CityWalk, single club admission is $7.00 while an all-club pass is $12.77. This Thursday The Blog will present an overview of the entire CityWalk club promenade.
A good time was had by all!