PUBLISHED : Thursday, 15 March, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 15 March, 2007, 12:00am

Miami the new spin city

If you're wondering about the lack of big-name DJs lined up to appear in Hong Kong during the next few weeks, don't be alarmed: the city hasn't suddenly fallen off the dance-music map.

Every DJ worth his record box is heading for the annual Miami Winter Music Conference, which this year runs from March 20 to 25. Now in its 22nd year, the conference is dance music's biggest yearly event, attracting DJs, producers, video programmers, retailers and distributors from more than 60 countries.

Alongside panel discussions such as 'The Age of Digital Distribution' and 'Advances in Production Technology', there will be plenty of parties taking place around the southeastern US city every night. Perhaps the biggest buzz surrounds the March 23 gig in the city's Bicentennial Park featuring goth rockers the Cure supported by Tiesto, Deep Dish and Miss Kittin.

But it's not all about the big names. Unknown DJs from all over the world converge on the city during the conference in the hope of being spotted by scouts.

Another main function of the conference is to spot the musical trends that will set the direction of dance music throughout the year, so you're sure to be hearing a lot of the tunes that have a big impact in Miami during the next few weeks.

Diesel power revs up Central

Closer to home - but just as out of reach for most people - is tomorrow night's performance by Chicago's MC Rhymefest (above) to mark the opening of Diesel's new Central store.

The rapper's biggest success to date is a Grammy Award for co-writing Kayne West's Jesus Walks. He's also known for defeating Eminem in a freestyle battle at the Scribble Jam hip hop festival in 1997.

Also appearing at the launch party is New Yorker Jus Ske, who earned his stripes as tour DJ for Pharrel Williams and has performed at parties hosted by Mariah Carey, Usher, Puff Daddy and Jay-Z.

Entry to the party at Central Star Ferry No7 is by invitation only, but post-performance invitations to see Jus Ske spin are being handed out. To try your luck, visit the Diesel store at 4-6 On Lan Street, Central.

Livehouse is a one-eared gig

Just one look at the band names for Saturday's event at the Live-house tells you what sort of music to expect: Defiant Scum, Darkness Pool, Maniac, Adversary and Rusty Cross.

Not much chance of any Canto-pop then. Livehouse gigs have earned a loyal following among the alternative music community during the past 18 months and are a great night out for those with more adventurous ears.

Livehouse can be found at Room L215, 3/F Phase 2, Kwun Tong Industrial Building, but call 2380 8578 if you get lost. Saturday's show starts at 7.30pm and entry is HK$45.