Bitlive Germany Preview

It all started of in the summer of 2001, when Chris Abbott of C64audio.com played host to the first ever c64 remix party. Club DNA in Birmingham was the location. The club was one of the most hi-tech clubs in the north of England and around 250 people flocked to witness the groundbreaking event. It would turn out to be the stepping-stone to bigger and better things.
BIT Live Germany - June 2003 Hamburg

News got around how the event brought the community together in a way that could have been imagine several years before. Musicians like Rob Hubbard, David Whittaker, Mark Cooksey, Martin Galway, Fred Gray, Richard Josepth and many more where crowded by a flock of admiring fans as they entered the club. The night would be a momentous occasion playing c64 club themes and holding competitions, light shows, and even two girl dancers.

Following this in the same year was a smaller, more personal event held at Gossips Nightclub in London.

Both events turned out to be a success, so much so that when Chris hosted Bitlive 3 in june 2002 the events was a total sell out with many people having to queue at the doors till midnight just to get into the Nightclub, and for the first time we witnessed many Live performances in the form of PPOT, Machinae Supremacy, Seth, Octave sounds, and the queen of SID, Ben Daglish. The event exceeded expectations, and was clearly a massive success.

Announced last year was Bitlive 4, which is to be held in Brighton and promises to be yet another groundbreaking venture from Chris.

Suddenly talk began to grow of the first Bitlive outside the UK, in the form of Bitlive Germany to be hosted by Dr.Future. Remix64 became fascinated by the suggestion that Germany could hold such a party. After plenty of discussion it became apparent that a dream of Dr.Future could turn into reality, and so here we are, it’s all in place and Germany is about to make history in being the first non-uk bitlive.

Germany has probably the biggest user base of fans and musicians in the world; Dr.Future explains why Germany is a valid place to gold such an event….

As you may know (and in fact it’s been revealed @remix64’s Forum) the c64 Fan-Base in Germany is one of the biggest, if not THE biggest, worldwide. There are so many of today’s famous remixers that come from or still live in Germany, and it became apparent that BIT Live Germany has been long overdue. Germany offers the right amount of c64 enthusiasm, innovative people and of course great hospitality.

People who have been to the UK events will have witnessed first hand how much of a great night the Bitlive series of events are, but what could we expect from the German event, Dr. Future explains…

What I expect is a friendly gathering of c64 musicians, remixers and SID-lovers, where friends can talk face to face without the need of mIRC, fans meet their heroes (live and in action), heroes meet their fans (live and probably drunk ;-)), probably some nice new songs (looking forward to that BIT Live Theme) and did I tell you of those cheap drinks…?As you know there will be some nice live-performances, the launch of Marcel’s new CD, game competitions and much, much more…

Dr. Future goes on to explain the location, describing it has a warm friendly club…

The location is the Shooters in Wedel/Hamburg. It’s a friendly club that tries to capture the atmosphere of party in you parents house when they’re absent, so you can rely yourself on that I’m at home-feeling which is an exception today with all these cold & cool clubs. I’m sure you will like it.

Of course organizing an event like bitlive has risks, especially financially, so what kind of response has Dr. Future had since announcing the event?

Well, without THAT great feedback I’m not sure that I would take the lead in organizing the event. I’m still perplexed how friendly and helpful all the people of this scene are. Their positive feedback gave me the motivation to make it happen.

Chris Abbott knows his stuff when it comes to organizing such events, after all he’s been there done that, Dr Future states…

Talking of the man himself, Chris Abbott, I must admit that he is the name that opens doors. The name BIT Live has a huge attraction and if you tell the people that this is a BIT Live event, they know that it is real and not only a phantasm. Chris helped out with the registration form and his great contacts, so working with him is invaluable (btw, it’s also an honor).

Holding such an event, such as Bitlive needs careful preparation, is the location right?, is the date not going conflict with other events, but other things need to be taken into consideration too, Dr. Future explains what initial steps he took in organizing the event…

First I needed some names to be announced, after that I had to reserve the location on a Saturday to acceptable conditions, which is not the easiest thing, believe me. The next step was the quick launch of a first URL (thanks to Chris) and a messageboard. We than started to create the official logo, which will be revealed quite soon and added other features like gaming compos. And that required the next step, organizing some prizes.

I asked Dr. Future if he would do this again, and got a tongue in cheek response…

Man, Rome wasn’t built in one day, I keep taking it step by step. Let’s see what the future brings..

Looking further ahead into the future and what the possibilities are of holding such an event in other countries other than the UK or Germany DR future goes on record to say…

It’s Important that the country has a c64 tradition and a lot of active members in the community. I can imagine a BIT Live Scandinavia, or maybe an event in Italy…

The music at the event surely has to be one of the most important things that Dr. Future has had to consider. I mean it can’t be much fun dancing around to The Tweenies great hits or Postman pat performs 60’s tunes with the aid of sticky back plastic and a toothbrush, so what types of music will be found at Bitlive germany?

Well, first I thought of some accapella by Marcel Donné and O², but after a first rehearsal I stopped those ambitions and decided to play Chris ‘n’ Boz The worst SIDs ever nonstop. Uh, just kidding, hehe. Of course there will be lots of great remixes, expect everything from RKO, all the c64audio-CDs, of course the remix64 CD, SIDologie and many more. Later on we’ll mix this up with the best of the 80ies and spice it all up with ingredients from the electro pioneers like Kraftwerk, Tangerine Dream and Koto. And don’t forget that live-performance…

It’s obvious that an event like this needs bodies to attend, what’s the point in creating such an event if two people and a dog attend, I asked Dr. Future about what he would consider to be a success.

as you know, quality counts a lot more than quantity, but as I’m not an oil sheik, I think of about 150 people to make this a break-even…

I asked Dr. Future about if he had any setbacks whilst organizing Bitlive germany, of which there will always be when organizing such an event, but in boyant mood dr. future takes it in his stride and states..

There has been a lot of setbacks, you can bet that. But that cannot stop us, the BIT Live Germany chapter has to be written, and it will be!

Bitlive Germany promises to be an event that you cannot afford to miss, especially if you live in Germany, after all will it happen again? Can you really take that gamble? Or will you miss what could be one of the most exciting days of your life!!!

Report By Neil Carr/remix64