Ivano Bellini’s renowned “Sunrise Sessions” on the famed terrace at Miami’s club Space have become the stuff of legend: a sultry, sun-drenched scene where international DJs come to party after playing their own sets. Bellini’s latest compilation, Miami Afterhours (SFP Records), has been airing on Sirius Satellite Radio, a precursor to his new weekly mix show just added to Sirius.
Having been a professional DJ since 1986, Ivano Bellini – born in Lausanne, Switzerland in 1966 and fluent in four languages – is a tireless proponent of the advances in technology, as evidenced by the fact that Miami Afterhours was mixed and recorded entirely using Pro Tools on a Mac. As for crafting his thrilling DJ sets, Bellini uses three Pioneer CDJ-1000 digital decks, and an effects unit. What’s missing altogether is the industry standard Technics vinyl turntables.
“I’m all for technology, as long as it’s used the right way and not taking-away the human factor, “ Bellini says. “As long as the DJ is actually doing the DJing and not the computer. Besides, no computer can mix as well as a human being, because there’s always fluctuations in beats and it’s never 100% perfect.” He continues, “Putting two records together is one thing, then knowing what record to play is another thing, and when within the track – as well as when within the set – is another thing entirely, and no computer can do that because it’s based on human emotions.”
Although being a global DJ isn’t easy, the years of long-hours and hard work have paid-off, thanks to Bellini’s passion for music. “I did a gig in Venezuela last March for 8,000 people in a sports arena called Poliedro, which was amazing. It was me and Tiësto: he played for three hours, and I played for five,” Bellini says. “Brazil was a great gig at Unique in Sao Paolo, and another of my best gigs was the first night returning to Space in April of last year. I started at 7am and finished at 3pm, and it was really special. I’ve played the terrace at Space since 2000, so it’s my baby.”
Bellini enjoys: traveling the world and discovering new audiences. “There are a few countries in South America – Colombia, Argentina and Brazil – where dance music’s been for a while, but it’s still a growing trend and there’s a huge anticipation every time an international DJ comes,” he says. “It’s a big event, because they don’t have global DJs every weekend in every club, like we have here [in the U.S.] or in the UK. There’s also great excitement in Asia, as well as in African countries like Tunisia and Morocco. There are also some Eastern European countries where they don’t yet have that many big events.”
Bellini is working on a full-length artist album and has plans for headlining an enormous stadium gig in the South of France in June 2006. he says, “The Southern France stadium event will be broadcast on French national TV and we expect some 50,000 people at that show. From that, there’ll be a live CD and DVD released. Honestly, I don’t see dance music slowing-down anytime soon.”