“I’ve always been attracted to dance music for its transformational power to shake people loose from the emotional burdens and anxieties that plague the modern psyche.” -Derek Watts
From the rolling hills of Sonoma County, CA to the skylined horizon of the Bay Area, a brain drenched in the waters of history and a tongue trained to slay dragons in academic debates, came an unlikely bass enthusiast who felt compelled to explore the funky frequencies that resonated so powerfully within him. Derek Watts--or DJ W as he is also known--came into his love for the underground like so many adolescents do today. A specific need to feel connected, to feel accepted, to feel free became a motto that was realized through the energy of a bad ass dance floor. What he also realized was that through music and dance in its highest form, judgement can dissolve, which meant that he had found a place where people could become part of that transformational power and give back in a way most suiting for the dance floor. It’s a sentiment he hasn’t been able to shake for decades in the underground house scene of northern California.
Now representing Deep Groove Society out of Humboldt County, CA--a place known for incubating artists and having an outsized cultural impact for its relatively small population--he’s been rocking dance floors from Los Angeles to British Columbia for the last decade and a half. Mr. Watts has developed a reputation for doing his homework as expressed with a meticulous track selection and he has consistently gravitated toward an upbeat style steeped in the progressive basslines of original funk with a modern electronic infusion. He is also known to have a taste for subtly uplifting breakdowns containing echoes of that late nineties Bay Area scene from which he emerged.
At this juncture Derek Watts is proud to be a core resident of Deep Groove Society’s SUNDAZE--the longest running weekly event in Humboldt County--as well as one of the founding promoters of Fire Fall, an underground event quickly building a reputation as a truly community-core event that consistently blows minds for its artistic prowess and uplifts all involved.