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One of the pleasures of writing this week’s City Paper cover story about D.C. electronic music label Future Times was talking to Sean McGuinness, who was part of D.C.’s punk scene in the early 2000s, then moved on to Pennsylvania and eventually joined Pissed Jeans. He offered up this anecdote about the Future Times crew’s anything-goes DJ craft:
It was probably like 2006 or 2007, I had left D.C., and it was the first time I came back and was just hangin’ out. I forget what I was doing there, just like hangin’, I think, partying with friends. Andrew [Field-Pickering] and Mike [Petillo] were DJing at a party, and it was like, “We DJ now,” and I was like, “OK, cool, that’s weird.”
I went to a party, and they totally dropped “Fly Like An Eagle” at midnight, and the place totally went off. I was like, “Whaaaat the fuuuck.” That was a moment for me when I was like, “Oh shit, these guys are real”—-they were playing dance music and party music, and they just fuckin’ dropped “Fly Like an Eagle,” like, of all tracks. No one is gonna think, like, “Yo, you wanna set this place off? Fuckin’ Steve Miller Band, let’s do this.” Like, nobody in their right mind would have the balls to do that. But those guys did it, and the entire place just went crazy, and that’s when I was like, “Fuck.” It was just like, some apartment party, too, man. Everybody was just like, “Oh shit!” Y’know?
And that’s when I was kind of like, “These guys are real. they can fuckin’ stand by ‘Fly Like an Eagle’ and make that shit sound good.” … Totally changed the perspective of that song for me, y’know? I don’t even remember what they played before or what they played after, but like the transition was so seamless and so perfect that like, they were somehow able to breathe life into that song. That made everybody there, in a non-ironic way just be like, “Oh shit.”