Holy Ship!—the mecca of all EDM festivals (land and sea) is just a few short days away. On January 3rd, I, Lisa Ansteth, embark on what is bound to be one of the single greatest experiences of my life. Departing from the port of Miami on the beautiful MSC Divina, the 3-night, 4-day Bahamas cruise ship is heading back to the island from the original sailing—Holy Ship!—Half Moon Cay in the Bahamas, plus the addition of an entire full day at sea!
Before heading out to sea, the official pre-parties set up before each sailing are just a taste of what’s to come. On January 2, catch back-to-back sets from Justin Martin and Dusky, Gorgon City and Kidnap Kid, Alex Metric and Oliver, and Sharam Jey with Shiba San in Room 1. Then on February 17, Bauuer, Jack Beats, Destructo, Milo Otis and AC Slater take over. In Room 2, The Buntings will be hosting their yearly “Officially Un-Official ShipFam Pre Party.” This room will consist of ShipFam DJs, Holy Ship passengers who are also DJs. You really don’t want to miss this kickoff to the greatest weekend and if you were unable to score a token onto the ship, don’t fret because anyone is able to attend the pre-parties. Tickets are very limited, so act quick! Click here for more information and to purchase your ticket before it’s too late!
I have been told that there really are no words, photographs, videos or songs that can even come close to explain what Holy Ship and the ShipFam community is all about, this coming from a virgin of the entire experience. After being a fly on the wall of the Facebook groups’ community for the last couple years, I finally found the moment when my money and an available spot in a cabin crossed paths and I jumped on the ship as quickly as possible.
The reality of what I have gotten myself into is officially starting to hit me: e-tickets have begun to arrive to passenger email inboxes and ship activities hosted by the artists themselves have been officially announced. In addition, the official themes have been released: prom night on day 2 and pajama party for day/night 3. Don’t think that there are plenty of other themed outfits to be had. From ninjas to mermaids, space to pizza, the costumes on board are guaranteed to blow minds. I cannot wait to see what I capture with my camera.
With previous lineups including the likes of Claude VonStroke, Knife Party, Fatboy Slim, Griz, Zedd, Skrillex, Dillon Francis, Boys Noize, A-Trak, Justin Martin, Laidback Luke and many more of the industry greats, the HARDfather Gary Richards (AKA Destructo) made sure the 2015 lineups are certainly on point yet again. January, although missing a few OG favorites, is still just as stacked as before. Justin Martin, Laidback Luke, Boyz Noize, A-Trak and more are back to bring the OG vibes for the virgins and veterans aboard. Not to mention the rumors for the surprise artists are already swirling with some favorites from past years and new inductees to the Holy Ship family.
Set times were delivered to emails and posted via their social media outlets just in time for Christmas morning. An unbelievably incredible job put together by Gary and the team is leaving everyone in the Facebook groups buzzing. On Saturday, after the safety drill and we set sail to the open seas, Annie Mac presents Brits Aboard in the Black and White room with Hannah Wants, Gorgon City, Dusky, and many more! Lest not we forget Pretty Lights on the pool deck followed by Griz and Shiba San and Gina Turner B2B Laidback Luke in the Galaxy Disco.
On Sunday, the day of music that will surely rival any festival around world, the music goes from 11:00am on the island, all the way through to Destructo’s Sermon Sunrise Set from 5:30am to 8:30am. That’s just 21 and a half hours of nonstop music! I literally can’t even. The private island party is set to have Busy P, Duke Dumont and flume, followed by a B2B with Arman Van Helden and our first special guest set. Back on the boat, A-Trak’s Fool’s Gold Rap Party, Boys Noize’s BNR & Friends, pool deck sets by Knife Party, Laidback Luke. But whatever you do, if you are lucky enough to be going on the ship, do not miss the Destructo sermon sunrise set. I repeat, DO NOT MISS THE DESTRUCTO SERMON SUNRISE SET.
Monday is not to be forgotten about given that it is the first ever Day at Sea with music from 11:00am – 4:30am. Starting the music off on the pool deck at 11:00am is Teki Latex followed by Shiba San. The Hip Hop Party at the Zen Pool & Garden Bar hosted by Tommy Kruise kicks off at 1:00pm and is stacked all day long. The other special guest spot will be on the pool deck at 8:00pm so that is another must-see set especially with Justin Martin followed directly behind that. You know where I will be! With an amazing unexpected B2B2B2B2B2B last year in the Disco, Destructo & Friends will be busy B2B’ing it all night long for round 2. Can next week get here fast enough yet?
For the artist-hosted activities, everyone is guaranteed to have an action packed week, getting to know their favorite artists on a whole new level. Yogi, DJ, and wife of Laidback Luke, Gina Turner, is back for two yoga classes, both on the boat and on the island on day two. Some other awesome activities include Laidback Luke who is also back with his kung-fu lessons, Henry Fong is hosting Holy Aquatics Olympics, Scratch master A-Trak and special guest Boys Noize will be teaching some of their moves with DJ Lessons, not to mention flip cup and Texas Hold-Em tournaments!
In addition to amazing music, activities and scenery, Holy Ship also has created a charity organization called Positive Legacy in a successful attempt to give back to the communities that the ship visits. Organized in 2004, Positive Legacy has been able to support the Caribbean community such as the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Caymen Islands, Belize, Haiti, the Bahamas plus many more. With assistance in the form of over 125,000 trees planted, 12,000 shoes and 50 laptops donated, and giving people access to clean drinking water, the good vibes that begin on the ship create a ripple effect throughout that can be felt way beyond the few short days we will be on board. For more information visit their website and see how you can help!
The January festival lineup includes: Knife Party, Pretty Lights, Flume, Boys Noize, A-Trak, RL Grime, Laidback Luke, Maya Jane Coles, Duke Dumont, Annie Mac, Armand Van Helden, Rudimental (DJ set), What So Not, Clockwork, Busy P, Griz, Justin Martin, Destructo, Alex Metric, Dusky, Odesza, Oliver, Rustie, Henry Fong, Gorgon City, Cyril Hahn, Salva, Jimmy Edgar, Congorock, Craze, Branchez, Spank Rock, DJ Sliink, Shiba San, Sharam Jey, Snakehips, DJ Falcon, Kidnap Kid, Hannah Wants, Motez, Teki Latex, Gina Turner, Wax Motif, Ape Drums, Tommy Kruise, Doorly, Djedjtronic, Vanilla Ace, Cory Enemy, Yogi and more yet to be announced!
The February festival lineup includes: Skrillex, Fatboy Slim, Baauer, DJ Snake, Tommy Trash, Basement Jaxx (DJ set), Claude VonStroke, Ty Dolla $ign, Sub Focus, DJ Mustard, Jack Beats, Busy P, Green Velvet, Mat Zo, Breakbot, Brodinski, Destructo, Justin Martin, Alex Metric, Galantis, Cajmere, Tchami, Araabmuzik, Martin Buttrich, Lee Foss & Anabel Englund, Soul Clap, Mercer, Huxley, The M Machine, J.Phlip, AC Slater, Kill Frenzy, Justin Jay, Milo & Otis, Valentino Khan, Louisahhh!!!, Curses, Boston Bun, Wax Motif, Kastle, Friend Within, Ana Lunoe, Club Cheval, Shift K3y, Panteros 666, So Me, Amtrac, DJ Pone, Sweater Beats, Posso, Cut Snake and more yet to be announced!
Holy Ship January and February are both sold out, and for January, name changes have been closed for a couple weeks now. However, if you scour the Facebook groups for February, there are still a few people trying to sell spots before the January 7th deadline. Act quick and you may get the chance of a lifetime in February!