Truth from Dare: Keep living

Aug. 15, 2013 | 0 Comments

BY DERIN DEREGO / Special to the Star-Advertiser

Lately it seems like there’s been one DJ battle after another, so I wasn’t especially excited when I heard that there was going to yet another taking place. However, I was pleasantly surprised on Tuesday, Aug. 13, when I caught round two of the Bacardi Oakheart “Iron DJ Challenge” at The Republik.

This is the third installment of the Barcardi Oakheart challenge series, following the return of the “Iron Bartender” competition and all-new “Iron Barback” contest. The DJ challenge started last week with 15 DJs invited to compete for 10 spots in Tuesday’s second round.

The author, second from right, with The Republik promotions director Flash Hansen, left, and friends during the Bacardi Oakheart "Iron DJ Challenge" on Tuesday, Aug. 13. (Courtesy Tom Quach)

The author, second from right, with The Republik promotions director Flash Hansen, left, and friends during the Bacardi Oakheart “Iron DJ Challenge” on Tuesday, Aug. 13. (Courtesy Tom Quach)

Unfortunately, only nine actually participated on Tuesday; Grammy Award-winning sound engineer Graves was summoned to the mainland to work on a national recording artist’s upcoming album, so he dropped out. Of the nine who played, six advanced to next week’s semi-finals. Those moving on are among some of the most popular DJs on Oahu: Jimmy Taco, Mike D, Packo, Shift, Technique and Toma.

What separates this DJ battle from others is that in addition to mixing, there are components like trivia, beat knowledge, and even a “name that tune” segment. The differences definitely help keep the contest from being monotonous and the crowd entertained. Next week should be exciting, as the top six are all talented and a few surprises are definitely in store.

The remainder of this week is shaping up nicely. Tonight, Aug. 15, the Royal Hawaiian Center hosts the “R Style Social” with a fashion show at 6 p.m. and special sales and makeovers throughout the mall. Select stores will also serve small bites and cocktails. This should be an entertaining avenue for keeping up with the latest in summer fashion.

The Bentos. (Courtesy photo)

The Bentos. (Courtesy photo)

Summer is almost over, but the party known as “Summer Fun” is back on Thursday nights at V-Lounge on Kona St. DJ Soundcheck and fellow Pulse blogger Christa Wittmier provide the beats for this super-casual affair for those who want to get a jumpstart on the weekend. Grab one of V-Lounge’s notoriously amazing pizzas, a couple cocktails, and rage until the wee-hours.

Friday, Aug. 16, check out “Soulgasm” at thirtyninehotel. The monthly party is among the best groove/house events on the island. This installment will feature a house dance contest and dance showcases featuring styles from capoeira to hip-hop. Get there early and try something from their new menu!

On Saturday, Aug. 17, one of my favorite bands, The Bentos, will play Jazz Minds Art and Café on Kapiolani Blvd. The upbeat crew recently performed at Clones of the Queen frontlady Ara Laylo’s wedding on the North Shore and kept the crowd thoroughly entertained amidst one of the most beautiful backdrops you can imagine.

Sunday, Aug. 18, will be a day of rest for me as I prepare for the Young’s Market annual holiday buyers show early next week. The industry event spotlights new products — and more importantly, offers free samples — from some of the most popular liquor brands. I’ll definitely have a full report on the festivities in next week’s blog.

Until then, keep living!
When he’s not out and about at the hottest parties and other events in Honolulu, Derin “Dare” Derego works as an account executive at a local radio station group. Reach him via email at or follow him on Twitter.

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