by Soundset 5-16-2017 4:44pm
Just Added: Soundset Lounge
Sometimes a great idea comes together in the final hour, and we’re excited to announce a new addition to the Soundset experience! The Soundset Lounge, taking place on the State Fairgrounds on Soundset Sunday in Cafe Caribe, will feature an impressive selection of DJs spinning vinyl all day, starting at 11 AM!
Representing from New York City, we have world renown DJ and record collector, Natasha Diggs, as well as industry and producer phenomenon, Dante Ross! Representing the Twin Cities, Michel.Be and DJ Lady Em have both been respectively building their names as must-hear DJs in the city, including their collaborative monthly dance night, The VIBE, which is still going strong at Ginger Hop a year after its inception. Starting the day off, Kevin Beacham (a.k.a DJ Nikoless), will be digging deep in the crates for a rare DJ appearance. Make sure to stop by Soundset Lounge for some amazing DJs, great music, and a place to chill!
For well over a decade NATASHA DIGGS has been digging deeper to provide the soundscape for parties across the globe in cities such as New York, Tokyo, Sydney, Beijing, Prague, Los Angeles and Berlin.
A record enthusiast and collector from her teenage years, Diggs started her journey as a DJ with the acquisition of her first set of turntables at age 17. Since then she has gone on to play at some of the hottest parties and alongside some of the best DJs and artists in the business. As resident of New York City's taste making Friday night party Soul In The Horn and also the city’s premiere all-vinyl 45 party, Mobile Mondays!, Diggs has become a force to be reckoned with and one of the most sought-after DJs in the world. Whether she’s
playing all vinyl or Serato, Natasha’s deep knowledge of music has enabled her to rock diverse crowds around the globe and on any given night her open format sets might dip into hip hop, soul, funk, latin, rock, house, reggae, afro-brazilian, disco, and beyond.
Natasha has played alongside or opened for artists such as Erykah Badu, Mark Ronson, Grandmaster Flash, Just Blaze, Dam Funk, The Pharcyde, Rakim, Slum Village, Foreign Exchange, Kenny Dope, 45 King, Cut Chemist, Spinderella, DJ Scratch, Prince Paul, DJ Spinna, DJ Muro, and many more.
In 2013 legendary hip hop MC/producer Q-Tip recruited Diggs to DJ with him at his weekly NYC party #OFFLINE produced by Giant Step. Here Natasha could be heard on one of the best sound systems in the world at club Output.
In 2014 Natasha was selected as a featured DJ on Damian Marley’s first ever “Welcome to Jamrock” VIP cruise traveling from Miami to Jamaica.
In 2015 Diggs became the official DJ for Ms. Lauryn Hill’s Small Axe Acoustic Set Tour. She was also called on to play D’angelo and the Vanguard’s official Black Messiah album release party as well as the Jean-Michel Basquiat exhibit opening at Brooklyn Museum.
She is equally comfortable playing a downtown underground loft party as she is rocking New York City’s Central Park summer stage concert series for thousands. Diggs is called on frequently by a growing list of corporate and celebrity clientele which includes Adidas, Google, Harpers Bazaar, Elle Décor, L’Oreal, Pharrell, Spike Lee, Roche- Bobois, Converse, Thomas Wylde, Grey Goose, Heineken, Fossil, Vichy, Alternative Apparel, Thompson Hotels, The W, Ace Hotel, The Standard, and Nickelodeon to name a few. Diggs has even been one of a very small number of DJs to play at the United Nations, spinning for the launch of the World Youth Report.
She's been a featured DJ on ScratchVision TV as well as done guest spots on B-Real TV in LA, Triple J National Radio in Australia, East Village Radio's Main Ingredient Show, Beatminerz Radio, Miss Lily’s Radio, WNYU and The Lord Sear All Out Show on Shade 45 (Sirius XM Radio) to name a few.
Dante Ross is largely recognized as one of the so-called architects of the so- called Golden age of Hip Hop. In his career Ross has worked with De La Soul, Queen Latifah and Digital Underground While at Tommy boy records. After moving to Elektra records in 1990, Mr. Ross built the labels Hip Hop roster, which included Busta Rhymes, Old Dirty Bastard, Pete Rock and Cl Smooth, Grand Puba, KMD and the Brand Nubians.
Mr. Ross turned career pages in the late 90's focusing on record production which lead him to co-writing and producing Everlast's 3 times platinum Whitey Ford Sing The Blues album, as well as contributing to Carlos Santana's 20 x Platinum Super Natural album, for which he won a Grammy. Mr. Ross also contributed to Eminem's 6 times platinum 8 Mile sound track, amongst many others projects. Mr. Ross currently is the Senior Vice President of A&R at Warner Music Groups independent distribution company ADA-Music, where he has helped shape the careers of Macklemore, Lil Dicky, Made in TYO and Ugly God.
Having family roots in Chicago, DJ Michel.Be comes from the power of jazz, 1960's and 1970's revolutionary funk, Hip Hop, and altogether music of the African Diaspora.
Michel.Be started DJing professionally at Twin Cities Pride in 2014 and 2015, as the feature DJ and Co-host for "RARE Productions:Power To The People Stage."Since then, Michel.Be has DJ'ed all across the twin cities for community events, private parties, and political fundraisers for candidates of color.
In 2015, Michel.Be was invited to DJ for the 10th anniversary of "B-Girl Be: A Celebration of Women in Hip Hop" presented by Intermedia Arts. The following summer Michel.Be was commissioned to spin a vinyl series for Sommerfest at MN Orchestra Hall.
Michel.Be has also appeared as a guest DJ for Fresh Fruit on KFAI, the longest running queer radio show in the country.
Michel.Be continues to evoke spiritual power through music, and create positive dance spaces for Trans, Gender Non-conforming, Queer People of Color. You can catch Michelle.Be at Ginger Hop with DJ Lady EM, where they co-host "The VIBE:a monthly Dance party"' in NE Minneapolis.
DJ Lady Em
DJ Lady Em was born & raised in Minneapolis. She is a youth worker and DJ. She Co-hosted a radio program on KFAI, Versed Radio, with her friend DJ Kary between 2013-2015. For the past year, she and DJ Michel.Be have hosted the dance night, The VIBE, at Ginger Hop. She still spins vinyl with her mentor, DJ Tarik Thornton, at the Nightingale every other Monday. Her love for vinyl started when she inherited her mom's Sade Diamond Life record.
Kevin Beacham fell in love with music at the age of four and every since then it’s been a key driving force in his life. At age 10, he got his first public DJing experience by playing the music at a family party hosted by his parents for their friends, using one wood-grain Kenwood belt-drive turntable, tape deck, and his Dad’s music collection, accompanied with an assortment of family-owned strobe lights and disco lights. Around that same time, he was able to witness a professional DJ live in person when accompanying his older sister to teen parties. A local DJ named Nate, would play parties at the teen center and let a intrigued and young Kevin Beacham stand by the DJ booth and take song requests from excited party-goers.
Over the next 15 years or so, he amassed a large and diverse vinyl collection, while at the same time, continually developed his understanding, passion, and connection to the music he loved; Soul, Funk, Hip Hop, Electro, etc… Yet, even after all that time he was essentially only a bedroom DJ. However, circa 1995, he noticed a shift in DJ culture and a new breed of DJs were seemingly choosing to skip over the basics and traditions of the art form and instead, attempting to become strictly masters of scratch techniques and/or Turntablists. Kevin Beacham saw this is a perfect time to officially introduce himself to the world as a DJ, particularly specializing in conceptual or themed DJ sets that range in genres, styles and eras. Adopting the name Nikoless Skratch, he began to release a series of mixtapes and started DJing locally on the Chicago scene, where he lived at the time, as well as performing at some of the events he was involved with nationally, including Scribble Jam. Named after a somewhat obscure comic book character, Nikoless Skratch’s approach to DJing was focused on putting the music first and foremost, while simultaneously pushing to be conscious of the song’s lyrics as much as the music, and creating smooth, exciting, and/or unique transitions from song to song.
In 2017, nearly forty years since he DJed for the first time at a family party in their apartment rec room, Kevin Beacham still approaches his sets in the same way, with a focus on playing the music that first and foremost inspires and speaks to him, relying on his passion and years of musical knowledge to help share over forty years of extensive music collecting, studying and enjoying with the world.