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[MXD Networking @ SPOT] Meet Paradiso

Asbjørn Hæstrup

Once again this year, we are inviting several key international industry professionals to attend SPOT Festival. All of them will be joining us at the MXD Superball @ RADAR as part of the SPOT+ programme, but until the festival kicks off on May 4th, we will be bringing you brief introductions to them, including where they come from, what companies they work for, what bands they want to check out at SPOT, and much more. We look forward to seeing Boye ‘t Lam of Paradiso.

Name: Boye ’t Lam

Company: Paradiso, Amsterdam

Title: Music programmer (promoter)

Can you tell us a bit about the company’s history?
Paradiso is the main concert venue of the Netherlands existing for almost 50 years now. We program a wide variety of concerts and club nights ranging from legendary artist such as The Rolling Stones, Nirvana and Prince in the past to underground bands and dj’s.

– and a bit about the acts you have worked so far with this year?
The year has just started but so far: Nicolas Jaar, Bonobo, Lil Uzi Vert, Sango, D.R.A.M. and a lot of smaller artist. At Paradiso we work in a team of programmers, each having his own specialisation, and together building the entire program of over 1200 shows per year. I’m responsible for the majority of the electronic- and hiphop concerts.

What was the moment you decided you wanted to work with music?
My first job in music was when I was around 17 years old at a label called Kindred Spirits, which was ran by Kees Heus another programmer at Paradiso and Antal Heitlager who runs Rush Hour. When I finished my masters degree I was at a junction of either going for a career in finance, applying for a PhD abroad or sticking with music. I choose the latter as by that time music had almost fully consumed my life not just on a daily base at the office, but also going on digging trips abroad, spending numerous nights at friends places discussing / listening to records and playing out records. I couldn’t really think about any better option than continuing along that path. I stuck around at Rush Hour for 8 years after which I switched jobs from being a label manager to programmer for concerts and club nights at Paradiso.

Who are you looking forward to seeing at Spot Festival this year?
At the moment I’m looking forward hearing Central. I missed him at the Dekmantel festival, but I’m looking forward hearing him play at Spot Festival. His latest record on Help records is really nice, which I think is from Arhus. Apart from that I saw Communions at Eurosonic earlier this year, but I had to leave shortly after they started due to a meeting, so I’m hoping to check out a full performance this year.

Best live show of your life, hands down?
Thats a difficult one… But I think I must say the D’Angelo performance in Paradiso about 2 years ago around his latest album Black Messiah. His band The Vanguard was amazing, amongst others he had Pino Palladino on Bass, who is in my opinion one of the best bass players in the world, Chris Dave on drums and Jesse Johnson from the Time / Prince on guitar. All star line-up. They played for 2 hours and it was one of the best shows I ever witnessed. D’Angelo is an amazing talent on stage and he guided the entire journey. What I didn’t know was that he’s a very religious person. Paradiso used to be an old church before it was transformed into a venue. According to his tourmanager D’Angelo was ‘spiritually enlightened’ by this fact and played the best show his tourmanager ever witnessed. Not sure what caused it, but all I can say that it was magic.