DJ Jus-Ske’s Adidas All-In Asian Tour Diary

As a manager and partner at 4AM DJs, I’m constantly arranging for performances, events, and photo shoots around the world. Every day, I get reports back from my DJs filled with the kinds of wild adventures I rarely get to be a part of as a desk jockey. The people who flock to their stellar international events get to experience the end results of months of prep, but do they really know what a day in the life of a DJ is like? In this monthly column, you’ll hear first-hand accounts of DJ war stories, with photos and videos from the world’s best to show for it. In this 4AM DJ Tour Diary, you’ll read about DJ Jus-Ske‘s trip through Shanghai, Taiwan, and Hong Kong for the Adidas All-In Tour. Yours truly, Adam Alpert.

In May, I was given the opportunity to be a part of Adidas’ All-In Tour. The tour took place in Asia and lasted a week. I flew from NY and landed in Shanghai, where I had a car waiting for me. The hospitality from the guys at Adidas was tremendous. I was taken to my hotel, where I slept off a bit of jetlag before getting ready to start my week of events. I stayed at Puli Hotel while in Shanghai, and it was sick.

During my first day in Shanghai, I met up with my buddy, Kevin Poon, who owns a clothing company called Clot Inc. Kevin is deep in the fashion world in Asia, owning stores like Juice Shanghai and Juice Hong Kong, which I was able to check out while I was there. He’s also opening the WOAW pop-up store in Hong Kong, which will feature a bunch of luxury eyewear brands all in one store.

Kevin was extremely helpful during my entire stay in Asia. The day of my first show, we went through the event that was about to take place that night. Later that day, I went for sound check at the venue, Block 6, and after did a ton of press in the green room. Eventually, it was time for the main event. I was set to go on after Edison Chen, who is a huge actor and musician in China.

After doing sound check and press, I was ready to rock, but then I found out that the party was getting stalled due to overcrowding. The cops in Shanghai showed up to the venue because too many people were trying to get in. There were problems with fans forcing themselves past the barricades at the entrance because they were so excited for the event, but they ended up just getting the show postponed for three hours. During that time, I just chilled backstage and became cooler with Edison. He’s a great individual. The cops stalling the event only created more anticipation for the show we were about to put on.

Edison went on first and killed it for the crowd. After his performance, he was nice enough to introduce me to the crowd. Edison being such a huge celebrity in China really helped the crowd to accept me. By the end of my set, the crowd was totally into it. The show ended up being totally official, even though it was pushed back for a few hours. The next day I left for Hong Kong first thing in the morning. Hong Kong was where I spent most of my time during my trip. I was there for five days and I was able to travel around the city, go shopping, and eat traditional Hong Kong cuisine. I stayed at The Upper House, another sick hotel.

In Hong Kong, I met up with my business partner Daniel to talk about my sunglasses line, Illesteva. The first thing we did was meet up with my friend Gilbert, who owns the biggest club in Hong Kong, called Dragon-i. We all got dinner and then made our way to Dragon-i, which always brings out the best crowd in Hong Kong. The next day I went sight seeing around the city. I luckily had the best driver, Jonathan, who took me all around in a Mercedes minivan. He took us to the gold and electronic market and to some other shops, including Juice HK. Shopping in Hong Kong is crazy. I met back up with Kevin Poon and we eventually got dinner.

My second Adidas event took place during my third night in Hong Kong and the crowd was amazing. The event was held at the Ocean Terminal Rooftop. The next night Gilbert hosted a dinner party at his insane penthouse in the hills. It was great running into all my Tokyo and Hong Kong buddies who were there. After dinner we went back to Dragon I and then later to Volar with my Hong Kong fam. Later that night, we all met up at Hong Kong’s best late night spot, Tsuewah, for traditional Hong Kong cuisine.

The next day I had some meetings and then left for Taiwan for the third and final stop of the Adidas All-In Tour. I stayed at the W Taipei. It was my first time in Taiwan and I didn’t know what to expect. After I landed, I went straight to sound check, then I met up with my friend, Soda, and went to a traditional Thai barbeque spot. The food was on another level. What was so great about the show in Taiwan was the event was held in the biggest shopping center in the country at No. 8. That night I did the red carpet with Edison Chen and I was able to watch and enjoy the show before performing. The crowd in Taiwan was extremely hyped. After the show I went to check out my boy, DJ Vice, because it’s always good to see friends especially half way around the world. The next day we went around Taiwan and went to Eskuche, one of the most amazing stores I’ve ever seen. I also stopped at Juice Taiwan to go shopping. One of my favorite things about Taiwan was the culture and watching some of the dudes there break dance, I’ve never seen anything like it. From Taiwan, I flew back to Hong Kong where I finally caught my flight back to NY. The hospitality I received during my stay in Asia was incredible. Everyone went above and beyond. The Asian culture is completely different and my friends who live there were gracious enough to show me around and make me feel at home during my stay.

DJ AM: Alive Last Night At Santos’

It was a mandatory event. One year after his death, DJ AM was memorialized at Santos’ Party House. He was great in so many ways: DJ, performer, person, friend. Everybody was making their own list last night. Santos’ honcho, Dave Delzio, was furiously texting me to get there. “Damn man, every club owner, can’t even drop names—it’s that crazy. It’s insane, it’s packed. Amazing!” It’s hard for me to get from my house to Santos. Even though it’s a short jaunt, I have to stop and chat with the local yokels. My path took me by Goldbar, where I waylaid Jon Lennon, who couldn’t leave ‘cause he was working—but he realized had to pay respects, be part of it. As we walked the final few blocks, we talked of gin and beer, Greenpoint, my ex-assistant Nathalie Glanzman (who we love), and the state of our art. Santos is almost amazing, but falls short too often. They need to become more dynamic to reach the full potential of this ridiculously perfect space. Last night shows what it can do, and I hope management gets it done this fall. As we approached it from Canal street, we spied the eclectic crowd in line and felt the good vibrations. Jon was happy he skipped out for the half hour.

“Adam DJ AM Goldstein” still lives, even while he rests with Elvis, Morrison, and the rest. Last night, all of clubdom came to support his charity. From the one-sheet:

“The DJ AM Memorial Fund carries on his legacy, raising funds and cultivating media partnerships to bolster the efforts of several organizations and projects combating addiction.”

Jon and I shook a hundred hands as we worked our way to the booth. DJ Jus Ske was murdering it. When he is on, he is as good as anyone. Everybody respects that. Last night he was over the top. You can always tell when that’s happening, as an inordinate number of heads are looking at the booth. I shook hands with Stretch Armstrong, Andy Brown, Jesse Marco, and half a dozen other great DJs. I looked around for Mark Ronson. I think the word is melancholy. Everybody was having a great time, seeing how good clubs can be and all that, but under it all loomed the tragedy of addiction and its terrible tentacles. The best DJ wasn’t there. The booth would be crowded but missing at least one player. Drugs, addiction, and other nocturnal distractions have taken DJ AM, and Larry Levan, and too many other talents. Drugs are one part of our culture that doesn’t discriminate, evaluate bank balances, popularity, or potential. It cuts a deep swath, and never stops knocking at the door. I’ve lost way too many friends to remember. Last night, we remembered, and realized our loss, and the gift that was DJ AM. I never met anyone who didn’t like or respect him. I asked Santos’ co-owner Larry Golden to give me his take.

“We had a really special night tonight. Lots of legends—lots! Too many to begin to name, but the main thing was the music, fucking sick! Highlights for me were Clark Kent and Stretch, but all the DJs were amazing, and I’m not just blowing smoke. The crowd was a downtown who’s who, beautiful. This is why I love my job, and why I love NYC. Legendary shit, people will remember tonight for years.”

Larry sent me that at 3:30 am. He’s more eloquent at 4am. Dave Delzio got in the final word, as is so often his desire:

“Everyone is here to support their true friend, and to honor his memory. They were friends, peers and fans. They want to keep his memory alive, and plan on a annual benefit in his name and support of the am charity/benefit.”