Immerse yourself in those beats in the heat

By Beverley Knight

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Sun on your face. Drink in your hand. Swept up in a gleaming crowd, carefree, ready to love, ready to dance. In January 2024, The award-winning BPM festival will charm Costa Rica, marking its 15th anniversary. There’s an indescribable feeling of unity at music festivals, inside a bubble away from reality. When you connect with art, it’s easy to make new friends. Birthed in folk traditions, early festivals date back to classical and jazz origins; they’ve come a long way.

Back in the late 60s, California was the place. Festivals from that point had a little something for everyone, and still do, like the world-famous Glastonbury in the UK. People say it stays with them forever. But what genre of music brings humans together more than most? Electronic. It hits differently in the open air. The Love Parade in Berlin started in 89 when people took to the streets for peace. You had the illegal raves in UK fields, miles from civilisation, in the early 90s, but the lawmakers weren’t having any of it.

Across Europe, other events blossomed. Barcelona’s Sónar and I Love Techno, originally in Ghent, now Montpellier, still stand proud. Apart from the Miami Winter Music Conference, things were only emerging in America. But in 2007, something quite spectacular happened.

After years of pleading, Coachella in Palm Springs secured French Touch masters Daft Punk to headline. Every last detail had meticulous planning. The results were in plain LED sight. It’s often voted as the most awe-inspiring Coachella set of all time, altering dance music, even live music to this day. Forty thousand revellers tried to get into the Sahara Tent; now, there was no doubt. There was a hunger for dance music in a large-scale setting.

Craig Pettigrew and Phillip Pulitano saw this and sought an area of beauty after New Year for industry workers to have a place to party and let their hair down in a coastal setting to soothe following a busy festive season. The first BPM festival was born in Player del Carmen, Mexico in 2008.

A ten-day extravaganza with DJs such as Laurent Garnier, Peggy Gou and Kenny Dope, to name a few, and the best of house and techno music pumped through high-quality sound systems and production values.

At all times, by turquoise waters, there’s plenty of scope to immerse yourself in dance music deeply. It attracts ravers from across the globe. Ibiza, Mykonos and New York are some of the places BMP have delivered events.

Portugal played host to BMP for two years, and in 2020, there was a move to Costa Rica, with the next instalment on 24 -28 January 2024. Over 60 DJs and producers, including deep house duo Bedouin and French hitmaker Hugel, will spin over three stages in Tamarindo. The jungle and beachside settings offer even more colour and a feeling of nature and art entwining.

Berlin techno label Toy Tonics mantra is: A stranger in life is a neighbour on the dance floor. And where better than an electronic music festival to put this into practice?

BPM has partnered with Public Pressure to offer festival-goers exclusive tracks and perks from four of our favourite underground DJs: Lab 11 resident Fleur Shore, Jesse Calosso from the Bronx, Italian duo Neverdogs and Afro-House artist Sounds of Rituals. Find out how to access the extras here.

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