An afterthought. The highway between New York City and Boston. Home to the insurance capital of the world. Endless phrases expressing the mundane can be used to describe Connecticut, but what about a strong EDM undercurrent?
Although thought of as a suburb of New York, Connecticut has three EDM scenes: long-standing, house-centric Hartford; New Haven, catered to the college crowd of Yale and other area schools; and Fairfield County, with Stamford leading with club G/r/a/n/d. It’s not just local DJs coming playing at these clubs, although the ones that do are considerably skilled. Along with well-known Connecticut-born performers like DJ Kered come world-renown producers making stops in Hartford or Fairfield County.
Kered, whose career kicked off in the mid-1990s at a New Haven venue called BAR, then with David Dresden as the resident DJ, spoke about the early days of electronic dance music in the state, saying: “Hartford has always had, or rather it had, a pretty cool club and house music dance culture. It dates back, gosh, to the late ‘80s, when Joe Giucastro was doing a night called Riot, which, at the time, was a really groundbreaking night. He was one first DJs to play Detroit, Chicago house and techno records, which at the time no one really heard before. And, he really had a really mixed crowd that would come every Friday and Saturday religiously. It was an interesting, amazing time. And, that was club culture.”
Kered is currently one of the resident DJs at Hartford’s Room 960. Located downtown in part of the former G. Fox & Co. department store building, Room 960 attracts the talent of Pacha NYC and its décor reflects a Miami lounge. The club operates Wednesday through Sunday, with Saturday being the prime night for house music. Over the years, Chris Lake, Sharam, Roger Sanchez, Kaskade, Danny Howells, Gabriel & Dresden, Sander Kleinenberg, Dubfire, Above & Beyond, Jonathan Peters, Markus Schulz, John Acquaviva, Chus & Ceballos, Seb Fontaine, Dirty South, Victor Calderone, Robbie Rivera, Boris, Oscar G, Cedric Gervais, Benny Benassi, Hector Romero, DJ Dan, Mindcontrol, David Morales, and Hernan Cattaneo have played sets at the club.
Aside from being both a literal and figurative beacon in Hartford’s EDM-related nightlife, Room 960 essentially changed where house could be heard in the state’s capital. Kered explained: “