by Matt Kalkhoff

As an informed and astute reader of this fine magazine, it is assumed that you are, at the very least, familiar with the name Victor Calderone. In fact, you probably already know quite a bit about the multi-talented master of musical manipulation who helped redefine the role of the American DJ in recent years while racking up an impressive array of artistic accomplishments. So let’s forego the biographical information (which, incidentally, is marvelously presented in great detail on his new award-winning website, and jump right in to find out what the veritable virtuoso is up to these days and just how he’s remained at the top of his game for so many years.

Advancements in technology continue to alter the face of the music industry at a mind-boggling pace, making it nearly impossible (and expensive) to keep up with all the latest trends. But a visit to Victor Calderone’s home recording studio located on the shores of Brooklyn, New York might make you think otherwise. Inside the computerized chamber is an imposing electronic arsenal of hi-tech synthesizers, samplers and software all intricately linked to his second-most cherished companion (upstaged only by his lovely wife, Athena), Apple’s PowerMac G4 – the “command center” at the heart of his state-of-the-art studio.

“I use software called Logic for arranging and recording music when I’m writing from a keyboard,” Calderone explains. “That’s the main software I use to produce and remix music. I spend most of my time behind the computer because the entire studio is hooked up to it – I can call up all types of different sounds from drums to bass to strings with the touch of a button.” While the computer helps him manage the creative process, he still likes doing some things the old-fashioned way. “I’m a hands-on guy,” he says. “I like to be able to turn knobs and buttons. So I still use some of the older, classic synths because they produce a really rich, warm analog sound that can’t be reproduced with the newer gear.” That is, at least not yet.

The Internet has also had a profound impact on the music industry. While artists’ views on music sharing sites (where songs are often illegally downloaded) vary widely, most have embraced the World Wide Web as an invaluable tool for promoting their careers. Calderone recently jumped on the bandwagon with the launch of “Creating this window where I can communicate with fans and people who follow my work has been really inspiring for me,” says Calderone. “Before, I didn’t have much connection to the audience other than through my music. But now people are communicating through e-mails and telling me how they feel and how I’ve touched them – it’s been a really great, positive experience for me.”

When he’s not sifting through e-mails, Calderone is usually tucked away in his studio working on projects like producing songs for Sting’s new album. Sheryl Crow’s “Soak Up The Sun” is quickly climbing the Billboard dance charts (the song was at #3 at press time) thanks to the mixes he recently completed with Mac Quayle, and he’s currently remixing Beyonce (Destiny’s Child) Knowles’ first solo record from the Austin Powers: Goldmember movie soundtrack. Calderone is also preparing to unleash promotional copies of his new original production, “The Drive,” which will be featured on his forthcoming Tommy Boy compilation, E=VC2, Volume 3.

While Calderone’s talent in the studio is undeniable, it’s his live performances that truly showcase his boundless energy and master of the turntables. He’s still waiting for the right opportunity to resume a residency in New York City, but he has remained in touch with audiences through bimonthly residencies at Stereo in Montreal, Canada and Tribal Sessions in Manchester, England. The jet-setting DJ also spins monthly at Crobar in Miami and occasionally travels for special events like Jeffrey Sanker’s Climax after-hours party in Orlando on June 1st and the Dolce & Gabbana party for Kylie Minogue in Milan, Italy on June 8th.

If you want to catch Calderone on his home turf this summer, you’ll soon have your chance. Following the remarkable success of last year’s Caligula event during New York’s Gay Pride Weekend, Calderone will once again be producing a massive dance party at the Hammerstein Ballroom on Saturday, June 29th. Dubbed Provocateur, this year’s event is being billed as a mysterious, erotic and sexually charged masquerade ball inspired by Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut. Hosted by Alan Cumming (who also appeared in the movie), Provocateur promises two special surprise performers and the return of the symphony orchestra. DJ Escape will play the opening music before Calderone takes over around midnight. Advance tickets for Provocateur are $75 and can be purchased through, or at Conquete in New York City.

© 2002 Matt Kalkhoff
This article was featured in the June/July issue of Miamigo and at