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Raving truly is a universe of possibility. Despite what you might’ve heard, the wonder of going to a rave or music festival doesn’t necessarily lie in the drugs you take, or which DJ's are playing, but rather the unity and oneness that exists throughout the spirits of so many people collaborating their feelings and impulses together. And boy, is it infectious!
There is so much human potential that exists when we break the boundaries of our differences and lose ourselves in the moment by cherishing the amazing experiences that life has to offer us. We find ourselves feeling in the right place with one another, like we found home. Music is the major equalizer of mankind because no matter where we all come from, we become connected through harmonious sound, and from there we can relate and learn from each other in ways we otherwise never would have. It opens your mind to new ways of life to let you create unforgettable bonds and make fantastic memories. Everyone is free to be themselves without judgement, and you find sanctuary in the masses of diversity when you realize you've become a part of something much bigger than yourself.
I'll never forget the first time I stepped foot into a rave. Eyes wide with wonder, gazing upon the flashing lights and lasers with a newfound eagerness while bobbing my head to the booming bass, I knew right away that I would never be the same. There was a wide open energy within those venue walls with good music and good vibes all around... a real-life paradise! It might sound cliché but it was the most euphoric experience I'd ever had in my life. I'd been to many concerts in my life before that, and I'd always loved the energy that thrived within a crowd of people all moving to the same beat. But there was something even more electric about the vibe of an EDM show, because everyone was so happy and free!
The urge to dance your heart out to EDM music is obviously irresistible (hence the name), and the beauty of it is there's a genre out there for everyone. Whether you're a hardcore headbanger, techno junkie, or a blissful trance fan and everything in between, you are sure to find a DJ out there that will make you move your feet. The origins combine elements from all kinds of musical genres allowing for endless mixes of songs, which is why no two sets from any artist will ever sound the same. No matter what your preferred style might be, every artist has something unique to bring to the turn table that makes their performance a party, like a dope signature mask, instigating a pillow fight mid-set or throwing full-sized cakes into the faces of fans. This kind of music is so intoxicating because the best artists make it feel as though a spell has been cast over the crowd, and if the build-up doesn't get you grooving, the bass drop sure as hell will!
We can't forget to mention the alluring production of visuals and stage design that syncopate sight with sound to create the unbelievable atmosphere that is a rave. Besides the music itself, the best shows are the ones equipped with all the bells and whistles... speakers that rattle your bones with bass, confetti cannons erupting from the stage, beaming lights of every color and spectacularly orchestrated imagery that matches every beat. (Tip: Indulge in a light show from a nearby "glove artist" during your favorite set if you really want to have your mind blown.) Furthermore, you might see some sexy Go-Go dancers or an array of circus-like performers throughout the venue, and if you're lucky enough to attend one of the larger outdoor festivals in your lifetime, you'll probably witness a firework show that sets the sky so magnificently aglow, it puts the Milky Way to shame.
These elements are what separate raves from most other music concerts. It's an outstanding sensory experience that makes you feel like you're in another world entirely! Your surroundings contribute just as much euphoria as what you're listening to from start to finish.
What's even more inviting is the parade of unique outfits that will catch your eye every direction you look. Imagine adorning yourself in whatever swag suits you best, be it an extravagant costume or barely anything at all, and feeling liberated enough to dance as freely as you would alone in your own bedroom, without any sense of insecurity in the world. I truly feel like the best version of myself whenever I'm dancing around in my favorite rave gear, and I think most others who do so would agree.
Being able to express yourself with whatever you choose to wear and feeling confident knowing that your fellow music-lovers will only praise you for it, no matter what age, gender, shape or size you might be, is one of the most wonderful parts of going to a rave. From fuzzy accessories or light-up sneakers to brightly colored garments and glitter head to toe, the sky is the limit! Don't forget to make an assortment of homemade Kandi bracelets to swap with your fellow ravers, and if you really want to go all out, you can build your best totem to bring to the show to send a message, rep your crew or crack a joke with the crowd. It's exactly this kind of creative and welcoming environment that makes me fully embrace my wildest style whenever I'm getting ready for a show. No matter what you decide to wear, you'll find yourself in good company that offers nothing but compliments.
Above all else, it's the people of the "P.L.U.R" community who are the main element that make raving as awesome as it is because there's an unspoken love and connection that unites everyone within it. If you're unfamiliar with the term, it stands for "Peace, Love, Unity & Respect," the core value known to every rave-goer that promises a bond of mutual acceptance and civility between all of its members. It's about creating special moments that turn strangers into friends and making connections with those who share the same love of music as you.
Raves and EDM festivals manifest the perfect environment for these relationships to blossom in, even with people who speak a different language or live halfway across the world. I myself have met some of my dearest friends and even found true love through the scene, who I may have never known otherwise. We've made countless memories at shows and after-parties all for the sake of the music that brought us together in the first place. Our relationships carry on to this day in the P.L.U.R. tradition because it's a moral that brings out the best in all of us. As the old saying goes, "Those who rave together stay together!"
If you've never gone to a rave, you might never know this kind of love that can exist in humanity. It is a revolutionary wave of energy that ignites positivity in the hearts of so many unique people... not just a trend, but a cultural phenomenon. So much love exists on so many levels in the community of music, and that is what raving reminds us!