People think DJs spend their lives partying in exotic locations with beautiful people and nary a care in the world. It's not all waterbeds filled with Jägermeister and full moon orgies in Thailand, though, sometimes DJing is a dangerous sport.
Cocoon, Suara, and Desolat-releasing artist AGENT! has learned this lesson the hard way. Despite being a resident at the oldest existing techno club in Europe in 1999, The Airport in Würzberg, AGENT has found himself in some questionable DJ booths over the years when on the road.
In particular, AGENT!'s dalliances with the Yakuza in Japan and Gomorra in southern Italy were notable brushes with the dark side of partying.
In AGENT!'s own words: "I got invited to DJ at a secret after-hours show after my gig at Club Air in Tokyo. My DJ colleague and I got picked up in a vintage Jaguar. The steering wheel was on the wrong side for Japan, and we were convoyed by a gang of bikers on their motorcycles (Bōsōzoku).
My british DJ colleague was asking for cocaine, and as we arrived at the club, the owner himself welcomed us and handed my colleague the drugs. One of the security guards immediately cleared the bathroom and made it our private backstage area, chilled champagne and hand massages by hostesses included. My colleague started sniffing and I started my set.
As I played. the security guy put a bar stool right next to my decks and sat down, cross legged. Then, he took off his shirt. He had tattoos everywhere. One of them was a full-body-sleeve on his neck, presenting the typical Yakuza uniform. I also noticed that one of his fingers was cut off.
He closed his eyes for most of the set, but whenever anybody approached too close to the decks, he opened his eyes and scared them away with mean looks alone. That's how he took care of me the whole evening."
"I went to Naples, Italy for a gig. After twenty minutes of DJing, around 600 people left the club within five minutes and there was just me and 10-15 people left.
I was surprised, but kept on DJing until the promoter, whom I've known for a while, came up to me, panicked, and told me that we have to end the party immediately and that I should pack my stuff and come to the office.
I went immediately, knocked and opened the door slowly. Inside I was welcomed by five men with shaved heads, black clothes and evil looks, who were arguing with the promoter. I decided not to join them and waited outside for the promoter, who came 20 minutes later, pale faced. He gave me my money and insisted that we have to leave right then."
"On our way to the hotel we didn't talk, until I asked what the problem was since I didn't understand. After a little while, the promoter whispered "il gruppo." He just said the M-word, we don't say it here – I knew he was talking about the mafia.
Six months later he told me the full story. Before the party, the mafia drew a huge amount of money from the promoter's bank account so the account got blocked. At the party, they wanted to have the same amount in cash, which the promoter couldn't provide. So our mafia-fellas ended the party abruptly and 600 people left without protest!"
Lucky for us, AGENT! still has all of his fingers, so he can continue his storied career of producing and DJing for many years to come.