Currently based in Seattle, we first met while he was organizing Low Tide, one of the first consistent house and techno parties in Bellingham. Since then Benoit has become a sort of best-kept-secret in the growing PNW underground dance music scene, behind the decks of the community's independently thrown events and renegade-style parties.
However, this week Parker steps into the booth for his Kremwerk debut in support of Nikki Nair along side Peace Portal alumni Korra the Kid.
With such a promising start to bookings since venues have reopened, we're anxious to see Benoit on more lineups to come.
Aside from off-the-books parties, next week at Kremwerk opening for Nikki Nair is your first outing since the beginning of the pandemic. How are you approaching the club setting on this side of things?
One thing that I've definitely changed about my approach to DJing a party is that I am much less attached to the initial idea (or playlist) I create for the night. Rather than going into an event with a brick and mortar playlist that I am going to live or die by, I have a bunch of different avenues I could go down by keeping my mind open to what the night could be. I think one of the most important parts of being a DJ is the ability to flow with a crowd, play to them what seems like they'd respond to well or maybe something they wouldn't expect. Short answer to the question is I'm going to be very flexible and take an approach to all my sets going forward with a bit of a plan but also the ability to stray and have fun.
The community you're apart of is also notorious for off-the-books renegade parties, often thrown outdoors. Can you describe the atmosphere of these parties?
Yeah, this atmosphere is actually what taught me how to flow with a crowd better than any venue or festival I've ever played has done in the past. The renegade parties / events / gatherings / raves (whatever you want to call them) that I've been able to be a part of really emphasize a laid back approach to not only performing but also how you carry yourself at an event with music. There is somewhat of a mutual understanding between all in attendance that as long as you're respectful to other people's boundaries and don't put nature or any human in harm then you can kind of just do whatever you want. No judgement. No judgement might actually be the best way to describe a renegade, you can really just open up and be whoever it is you want to be. This kind of wraps back to what I mentioned earlier about how I learned a lot about being mailable as a DJ from playing at renegade parties because I felt literally no judgement from what I was about to do regardless of whether it makes sense from a conventional standpoint.
There seems to be a growing trend for this kind of party across the west coast in response to clubs and venues being closed. Do you think the trend will continue as venues continue to open?
As long as there's a group of friends willing to bring all their expensive gear into the woods for three days and there are crews of friends willing to pitch in and help out throw an awesome party with no payout other than having an awesome time, then yeah.
If you had to choose between one or the other, would you have a preference between club or renegade party?
I think they're both great for different things but I really like fresh air and open space to sit down and do whatever you want so I guess I'd lean more towards a party environment outside of a club.