Tracy Young: "New Year's Eve Is for Amateurs"
It was just a few hours before midnight on New Year's Eve 2002, and the woman who'd DJed Madonna's wedding could not find parking. She had rejected multiple offers to play NYE parties in other cities, because she -- Tracy Young -- and her friends had decided that celebrating together on South Beach would be a better time.
But after fighting with SoBe's infamous traffic, turning down expensive hangout options, and ultimately missing the New Year's countdown, Tracy and crew realized they'd been wrong.
"I ended up at a friend's house, and I said, 'You know, we should create the NYE experience during the day,'" Young remembers. And thus, the world-renowned Genesis New Year's Day party was born.
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"New Year's Eve is for amateurs," the DJ laughs. "The next morning is for people that just want to go out and have a good time and not deal with it."
Originally held that January 1 at Crobar, now called Cameo, the attendance of the very first Genesis well exceeded Young's expectations.
"When I pulled up, the line was wrapped all the way down Washington," she said of the party that went to 5 p.m. "I expected it to be over at 12:01, and that first year I couldn't stop. I was exhausted, but I couldn't stop because the crowd was so full."
For 2014, Young and friends will take over Mansion's dance floor at the unlikely hour of 8 a.m. and count down to noon, just as they have since 2003. It's the perfect way to catch the NYE fun without the fuss. Or if you never went home the previous night, it's a killer plan to keep the party going. And as an added bonus, all proceeds from Genesis go to the Gay and Lesbian Task Force, one of Young's favorite charities.
"It was hard for me to choose any charity, because I believe in so many and am involved with a lot," Young says. "I just decided on the Task Force because they're national, they're really working on marriage equality causes right now, and I just felt that as far as the money that was donated, they would disperse it themselves, and then I wouldn't have to single out somebody."
On a personal note, Young has high hopes for 2014. She just finished successful remixes for Demi Lovato and Katy Perry. She'll likely release another artist album. And she's excited about all the changes that await.
But after 11 years of ringing in New Year's Day on SoBe, there's one change that she's still waiting on.
"Oh my god, traffic!" Young laughs. "It's so frustrating, and people get so aggravated. It just doesn't have to be that way. There's so much construction and it's just, fix the traffic!"
Genesis New Year's Day Party. With Tracy Young, DJ Paulo, and a live performance by Blue. Wednesday, January 1. Mansion, 1235 Washington Ave., Miami Beach. The party starts at 8 a.m. and ends at 5 p.m. Tickets cost $75 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 21 and up. Call 305-695-8411 or visit mansionmiami.com.
Follow Kat Bein on Twitter @KatSaysKill.
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