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Buenos Aires Creamfields

Creamfields Buenos Aires is now the biggest Creamfields in the world. DJmag's South American correspondent Katrin Richter reports from the festival.

The Argentineans currently hold the world record in Creamfielding - over 60,000 people attend this year's event, attracting more revelers than any other Creamfields event on the planet (the Liverpudlian edition has never exceeded more than 41,000).

The main force behind the success of South America's burgeoning dance music scene and its Creamfields festivals, is party don Martin Gontad, the most powerful man in the South American dance music industry.

Creamfields has traveled the whole of South America, covering nearly every country on the continent, including the important music markets of Chile, Mexico and Brazil.

But nowhere were people as keen to pay the hefty entrance fee as in Argentina, at the world's largest Creamfields event.

Creamfields Buenos Aires
This is down to the excessive groundwork of Martin Gontad and his team.

"I have 14 years of experience in this field," repeats the suntanned, gold-chained CIE Argentina partner, CIE being the multinational corporation that executes giant festivals all over the Americas.

He looks slightly exhausted after the long Creamfields festival weekend.

"I come from the fashion industry," he recalls when asked about his past.

"I was actually the first in Argentina to connect a brand with a band or a certain genre of music."
Creamfields Buenos Aires

In The Beginning

Martin learned his trade at the end of a decade fuelled by hedonism, excess and glamour, and a lot of attitude - New York in the Eighties.

Being in the right place at the right time, it was easy for him to connect with the right people.

"I got ID Magazine to bring some electronic music artists like Electribe 101 to Buenos Aires.

"That was at the beginning of the Nineties when absolutely no one had heard of this kind of music", he recapitulates, all smiles and glistening teeth.

This was the beginning of Martin's path to glory. "I started to work with a lot of DJs who had started to spin around the globe, ensuring they would get the best treatment possible."

In other words: Top payment. Top hotels. Top venues.

Martin built his reputation as a "perfect host", as he organised high caliber events in which he created the perfect setting for the global superstars to shine and enlighten the local fashionable crowd.

Monopoly?

Creamfields Buenos Aires
A lot of big-name DJs chose to work with Martin and although he emphasises that, ultimately, "it was up to them who they worked with," many signed themselves exclusively to Gontad.

Whenever they hit South America, they would do so only through Martin.

Something that has led his critics to claim he created a monopoly.

"It's not about this," says Martin, forever charming, "it's about knowing what is best for the DJs.

"And I, with my excessive knowledge of their likes and dislikes, can deliver.
"I am always exceeding expectations whereas others fail to meet them."

Creamfields Buenos Aires
So they flock to Mr Gontad, and not only DJs, but organisations as well.

Major global brands have decided to work with Martin, amongst them beer company Brahma.

And of course, James Barton's Creamfields.

In less than five years the festival has not only grown to become the biggest dance music festival in the world, but the most successful of its kind in Argentina.

Martin has done a great job: the Creamfields bumper stickers on the cars of the revellers who trek to the festival signals how much the locals connect the name to having a good time.
Creamfields Buenos Aires

Enjoying The Fruits of Labour

So how was the most recent Creamfields event in Buenos Aires, Argentina?

One of the most impressive facts about the festival wasn't the sheer number of high caliber DJs that were flown in from far distant places.

It was the amount of local talent that spun or performed live in packed tents to a hot and anticipative audience.

With over a hundred DJs and live artists from Argentina and other Latin American countries, it was really good to the see that there was a clear emphasis on supporting the local scene.

Well established artists such as Microesfera, DJ Buey, Bad Boy Orange, Romina Cohn, Renato Cohen, DJ Patife, the Bajofondo DJs, as well as local big wigs such as Fabian Dellamonica, Carlos Alfonsin, Festa Bros and London 909 played alongside relatively unknown DJs and live acts such as Satellite Kingston, K-No, Adrian Soto, the Pedigree DJs, D.E. and Dilo.

Creamfields Buenos Aires
Most of the latter were new even to die-hard clubbers who roam the streets of Buenos Aires in search of an underground party every weekend.

With so much fresh talent, it can only be a matter of time before the stale nightlife scene of Argentina's capital is transformed into something world-class.

Which is what all the locals are longing for.

Established DJs, producers and promoters deserve to reap the benefits of their early years, as long as they help to create a healthy microcosm for the young ones to grow.

Only the young have the time and energy to change things.

In the long run, everyone profits from a healthy scene, so it's in the interests of everyone, including Mr Gontad, to promote local talent.

For more info, tune into www.creamfieldsba.com or www.2netproducciones.com.

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