One of Cairo’s up-and-coming venues, the Cairo White Club of caged-monkey-during-an-event fam , hosted the finals of the Scratch Battle DJ competition on Friday. The six finalists competed against each other in a lively atmosphere in the club’s low-key Mohandessin location.
The event was the final of three rounds where the judges, well-established DJs, eliminated contestants to end up with the finalists that performed on Friday. The winners of the 2012 Ramadan Competition were DJ KB Shoman, DJ Nuff Said, and Scratch’s own, DJ Shehab Saleh, in first, second, and third places respectively. The winner of the competition performed for 45 minutes with the judges and will DJ again on Nile FM Radio with DJ Carlos, as well as having his show aired on InsomniaFM and Scratch Radio.
The first place winner, DJ KB Shoman, real name Karim Badr, said he was thrilled to win the competition. “I originally entered to prove my worth and to let people know that I was here, in addition to trying to popularise the genre itself, with which I have been in love with for as long as I remember.” Badr also said more initiatives like Scratch were needed to foster local talent and encourage people who may be too scared to venture head-on into a competitive industry. He added he is working on a new original song and intends to send it to a record company in the future. His hope is to become an international DJ and work with famous DJs such as Armin Van Buuren.
The event was curiously advertised as beginning at 7pm. Unsurprisingly, at 9pm there were still not many people around. The modest turnout did not deter the crowd from having fun, however, and the mood was generally of support and enthusiasm for local talent.
The organisers made an interesting choice to use the relatively unknown locale to host the event, as opposed to other well-established clubs around the city. Cairo White is full of mirrors and has a colour palette that is limited to white and blue. The bar is small and trapped in a little corner but this never became much of a problem last Friday, as the place was far from packed.
The music seemed to be enjoyed by the attendees though if the genre is not your cup of tea, you would have done well to avoid it. An interesting thing about the crowd was the overwhelming majority of younger people. Most of the crowd did not look even remotely 21, with many looking high school-aged. The male to female ratio was not very balanced, with a predominantly male presence and only a few scattered groups of girls.
Reportedly, the place only served alcohol to those who were 21 and a little after midnight the minors were asked to leave so the place could resume business as usual. When checking out the bar policy, the Daily News Egypt was asked for their ticket, that included a free drink, rather than an ID.
The event was one of the few that encourage local DJ talent and the general mood of the electronic music aficionados last Friday was positive. The turnout may have been modest, but those who were there were clearly passionate about the music and the event will likely retain the loyal following they have garnered over the years for the Scratch DJ Competitions to come.