SoManyDJs: Christa Belle gets the party started in Vancouver

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      Christa Belle is much more than a pretty head of hair. But seriously, get a load of that ’do. It puts the coiffures of every other DJ in this city to shame and is so perfect it makes you think that the young woman, also known as Christa Walley, is actually a form of AI.

      There could be some truth to that totally awesome rumour we just started, as she has suspiciously encyclopedic musical knowledge and can consume an inhuman amount of fernet. Behind the decks, Walley will fool even the best blade runner with her radiant party presence and spirited sets of indie classics, pop hits, underground dance music, and everything in between.

      Catch her at LOVE!, which happens every Saturday night at the Fox Cabaret, as well as various dingy warehouse one-offs around town. You’re encouraged to do so because if a machine, a Terminator, can learn the value of a good party, maybe you can too.

      Best gig ever

      My 21st birthday at the original Vancouver Art & Leisure warehouse at 8th and Quebec last December. I played a heavy funk and disco set—Chaka Khan, Prince, Stevie Wonder, the works. It was the first time a set really clicked for me. Like every track and transition had a perfect home in the mix.

      That warehouse is now home to a dog-taxi service.

      Top track right now

      “Never Too Much” by Luther Vandross. Never fails to put a smile on my face and always gets people moving in the smoothest way.

      A song that cleared the dance floor

      “Firestarter” by the Prodigy. Makes me think people really need to catch up, you know? I stand by my selection.

      Favourite Vancouver producer

      It’s gotta be my friend David Pimentel, aka Pomo. He’s done incredibly well for himself, especially this past year—touring with Disclosure, having his debut album pressed to vinyl, and releasing silky smooth remixes throughout. To this day he remains humble and is always down to talk shop. I play his remix of Richard Jon Smith’s “Stay With Me Tonight” almost every Saturday at the Fox.

      What’s up with your hair?

      I joke with my DJ and business partner, Trevor Risk, that in a future acceptance speech I will thank him, my family, and my bangs for the success I’ve experienced. The bob is a very strong and feminine look. I would like to think that my work reflects that. On Halloween this year a group of my closest friends showed up dressed in Christa Belle costumes—they all wore black bob wigs. As if I’m ever going to change my style after something like that!

      Oddest request you’ve ever received

      It’s odd to me when someone asks to hear a deep cut that I do in fact have and love. Most people who make requests think DJs have this magical vault of every song that has ever been created. It’s amazing to me that these people have their shirts on the right way around. So when someone comes up to me at LOVE! and asks for a cool artist like Todd Terje or the Juan Maclean, I find it odd and congratulate them by playing it.

      Follow Michael Mann on Twitter @mmann.

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