Mid-winter by the pool: 5-hours of Japanese and Hawaiian music at Ace Hotel Palm Springs

Events Mixes

I look fondly in anticipation any time we get to play tunes poolside at the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs. Regardless of the season, it's a warm and welcoming place to curate sounds for an audience content on relaxing by the water all day long. So when Ace hit us up to join dublab and Mr. Good Boy for a 3-day "Kyoto Weekender" at the hotel, we immediately said yes.

Kyoto in the desert? Ace recently announced the opening of their first location in Japan: the Ace Hotel Kyoto. To celebrate, their Palm Springs location decided to dedicate a weekend on Japanese music, whiskey and food best they could — which included an underwater listening experience of the remarkable Kankyō Ongaku compilation by Light In The Attic. Here's a look at what went down.

dublab, LA's online radio institution since 1999, joined in the fun with the help of Light In The Attic, showcasing their Kankyō Ongaku compilation by means of underwater transmission, literally: the soothing, spacey sounds of Japanese new age, ambient and electronic music filled the pool from 10am ~ 3am daily with a specially designed underwater speaker.

Mr. Good Boy is a mobile record cart that all-in-one special events music platform that can operate anywhere — in this case, the hotel lobby. With its room-filling built-in speaker, the record cart fit right in at the Ace, situated against the window near the main entrance. The crew behind Mr. Good Boy asked us to stock the bins with roughly 150 selections of Japanese and Hawaiian records. No easy task unless you're actively collecting Japanese wax, fortunately between myself, Vinyl Don and Hideki Yamamoto, we were able to meet the demands for a noteworthy offering. To round things out, we also brought a handful of Hawaiian records, used and new.

In fact, when we arrived Friday afternoon (the pop-up launched the day before), there was already at least a dozen pieces sold! Not a bad start to the weekend.

In addition to filling the lobby's bins with collectable vinyl, we set the mood poolside for three days straight, DJing vibed-out Japanese, Hawaiian, and other tunes for 5 hours each day. On Friday and Sunday evening, we jammed in the Amigo Room (Saturday witnessed Palm Springs-native and Amigo Room-vet DJ Day bring a party to the weekend nightlife crowd).

Slightly sun-kissed and buzzing from day beers and palomas on-tap, here's our 5-hour live mix from Sunday afternoon.


Turns out, we were the first ones to DJ in the newly renovated Little Bus. Its function before becoming a DJ booth, I'm unaware of. This Kyoto Weekender was the maiden voyage that sailed the bus-turned-DJ booth into new adventures for 2020.

P.S. Aloha Got Soul will be back at Ace Hotel Palm Springs on April 10 and 11, 2020.

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