Ostensibly, Winter Music Conference and Miami Music Week provide thousands of very serious electronic dance music fans with an annual opportunity to meet, mingle, and discuss the state of EDM.
But c'mon, that's bullshit. The truth: Both WMC and MMW are just excuses for totally out-of-control beat freaks to strip down, oil up, and shake ass at a pool party while chugging too many mojitos, popping too many pills, and humping too many strangers on a pile of soggy hotel towels.
So stop using words like Zeitgeist, forget setting up a "symposium on glitch-house," and slip into a string bikini or padded banana hammock. Here is New Times' pool party guide for Winter Music Conference and Miami Music Week.
WMC pool parties
Shelborne Beach Resort's Pool Party Marathon. Noon Friday, March 16, through Sunday, March 25, at the pool at the Shelborne Beach Resort, 1801 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-531-1271; shelborne.com. A week pass costs $325 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 21 and up. Have you ever spent ten straight days getting wasted while busting moves by the pool at the Shelborne? Well, it'll cost only $325, plus a $26 service charge and a full paycheck's worth of booze money. The dangers: a nasty alcohol-induced case of sunstroke and an unidentified STD from that skeezy midafternoon hookup in a pool cabana. The benefits: gettin' wet, wild, and weird for an entire week and a half with Nervous Records, Def Mix, Carl Craig & Friends, DJ Mag Recession Sessions IV, Luciano & Friends, Steve Lawler's Viva Music, Marco Carola's Music On!, and Pacha Ibiza's Annual Classics Pool Party.
Dream Sessions. 11 a.m. Friday, March 16, and Saturday, March 17, at Highbar at Dream South Beach Hotel, 1111 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-534-8455; highbarmiami.com. Tickets cost $35 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 21 and up. According to the official hype, Highbar's Dream Sessions is the "#1 hotel rooftop party for WMC." It'll splish and splash for a total of "10 days!" or "170 hours!" There will be tons of "A-listers" and "South Beach socialites" in attendance. And if the flyer isn't lying, you can expect at least one beach ball.
A Day in Kaos. With DMS12, Selekta Chan, Merlyn & Supernaut, Gor-D, DayDreamn, and others. Noon Sunday, March 18, at Finnegan's on the River, 401 SW Third Ave., Miami; 305-285-3030; finnegansriver.com. Tickets cost $25 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 21 and up. This party's recipe for poolside Kaos: multiple cans of complimentary Sex Drive energy drink, a Bahamas cruise contest, hourly b-boy dance sessions, all-day T-shirt giveaways, massages, body painting, makeovers, and 31 electronic music addicts dropping house, breaks and bass, and downtempo tuneage.
This Is Ibiza. With Juanjo Martin, Albert Neve, Sandra Collins, Shamizo, Jose Franco, Alex Fever, and others. 11 a.m. Sunday, March 18, at the Marseilles Hotel, 1741 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-538-5711; marseilleshotel.com. Tickets cost $15 to $40 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 21 and up. If you get drunk or drugged enough, you might actually begin to believe that "This Is Ibiza!" But don't freak out. Just remember: We're in Miami. That's a pool. And it's only a party starring Spanish producer Juanjo Martin and all of his EDM-addled friends.
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Sexy & Wet. With Harry "Choo Choo" Romero, Jose Nuñez, Junior Sanchez, Antranig, Alex Alicea, and others. Noon Sunday, March 18, at Club 50 at the Viceroy, 485 Brickell Ave., Miami; 305-503-4400; viceroyhotelsandresorts.com. Tickets cost $25 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 21 and up. There are times when a bathing raver just doesn't know what to wear to the pool. Luckily, this particular party has a nice, concise dress code: "Less is best!!!" And if those instructions aren't clear enough, the organizers have also provided an illustrated example of proper pool party attire, which suggests you should totally show up in a thong with "Sexy & Wet" tattooed on your right ass cheek.
The Three Kings of House. With Louie Vega, David Morales, and Tony Humphries. Noon Monday, March 19, at the National Hotel, 1677 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 866-215-6641; nationalhotel.com. Tickets cost $20 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 21 and up. Electronic tuneage icons Louie Vega, David Morales, and Tony Humphries have never played a pool party together. In fact, they've never gigged the same show, period. So buy a ticket. Get a Brazilian. And bring each of these Three Kings of House a gift to commemorate the occasion. You know, something like waterproof DJ headphones, a crown-shaped flotation device, or maybe a MIDI-enabled pool noodle.
I Am a Rich Bitch. Presented by Casa Ibiza. Noon Tuesday, March 20, at the Congress Hotel, 1052 Ocean Dr., Miami Beach; 877-775-5783; congresshotelsouthbeach.com. Tickets cost $20 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 18 and up. Warning: The Congress Hotel has been overrun by trashy, cash-soaked party people with a taste for house music, MDMA, and babes of both sexes. All week, these expensively sleazy maniacs will celebrate WMC and MMW with a nonstop series of pool parties, including the Pornographic Label bash, the Sexy 'n' Chic showcase, and the Underbelly of Society Ball. Be there Tuesday and shamelessly say, "Yeah, I am a rich bitch. So what?"
Surfcomber Hotel's Seven-Day Swim. Featuring Robbie Rivera's Opening Pool Party, Be Yourself With Danny Tenaglia, Waveform With Victor Calderone, the Circo Loco bash, Pete Tong's Pool Party, Get Wet, and Axwell and Friends. 11 a.m. Friday, March 16, through Sunday, March 25, at the Surfcomber Hotel, 1717 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-532-7715; surfcomber.com. Tickets cost $25 to $95 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 21 and up. Have you ever spent seven straight days swimming, dancing, and screaming ecstatically in immediate succession for 12 to 15 hours at a time at the Surfcomber? Well, that's called the WMC/MMW triathlon. It's the ultimate test of one's endurance, will, and capacity for consuming massive amounts of illicit stimulants. And if you complete the Surfcomber's weeklong 2012 course, you will finally prove you are an elite pool partier. Godspeed, beat freak.