Tasha Blank joins the Spotlight Mix Series
Tasha Blank is a celebrated international DJ, motivational speaker and founder of BODY LVNGUAGE (formerly The Get Down), a global dance party reviving the soul of nightlife. With its uniquely raucous, sexy presence and rich culture of respect, all bodies are welcome.
Blank is known for liberating hips in New York City’s most legendary clubs (Cielo, Output, Verboten, House of YES), the world’s wildest festivals (Envision, Lightning in a Bottle, Burning Man, Wanderlust, Beloved), and museums, churches, helipads, boats, roving desert ships, forests and mountaintops everywhere.
Tasha’s sets are richly varied. Rooted in house music and invariably uptempo and uplifting, they include everything from garage, R&B, soul, gqom, hip-hop, pop, techno and plenty more. Ritualistically rhythmic and inclusive, they invoke a time when it was not just acceptable, but expected that a DJ should take risks.
She joins the Spotlight mix today and we also chatted to her briefly too, check it out below and grab it here.
Tasha – you’re the founder of BODY LVNGUAGE and Powerhouse DJ School (PhDJ). Briefly, how did you get to where you are now?
By being obsessively committed to creating dance floors that feel like church, where folks can experience real catharsis, release and healing.
By showing up consistently over lots of years, refining as I went while studying a zillion somatic healing modalities and generally learning how to love better so that everyone on my dance floors feels a kind of revelatory permission to be radically themselves.
And, with the support of many dear friends and folks who’ve connected the dots and spread the word, and many thousands of people who’ve shown up to jump on a sweaty ride into the unknown together.
What makes BODY LVNGUAGE events unique?
The community, the care, the dedication to our core principles, the willingness to unleash all the parts of ourselves that get pent up while we’re sitting at our desks and staring at our screens.
Everyone who enters agrees to keep drinks off the dance floor, put away their phones and treat each other better than family. Our dance floor is an experiment in love and awe, in how much space we can make for ourselves.
You also run Powerhouse DJ School (PhDJ). How does what you teach there differ from what people might expect to learn at a typical DJ school?
We’re teaching the thing that most people think is magic.
There’s so much more that goes into catalyzing a transcendent dance floor than pushing the right buttons. Honestly, the technical part isn’t complicated. You can google it. Creating a dance experience that ignites bodies, opens hearts and transforms minds is a different skill set – and we’ve turned it into a science.
As DJs, we’re in a huge position to help folks access places in themselves they’ve never felt before – to take people on a journey that actually changes them.
We incorporate somatic and trauma healing, story crafting, theatre, leadership, ritual and shadow work. In addition to our penchant for impeccable mixing and the technical aspects of DJing, it’s all those other things that allow us to tune deeply into a room and bring it somewhere new.
We’re also committed to building an artistic community that makes putting yourself out there as a DJ a little less scary. There are thousands of folks who never DJ outside their bedroom because it’s intimidating. But when you’ve got a collective of colleagues sharing in the experience it creates such a supportive environment.
We teach the skills it takes to step out powerfully – from confidence, copywriting and communication to nervous system regulation, branding and marketing. That’s what turns someone who can DJ into someone that does DJ.
We’ve broken it down so what takes most people ten years to figure out can be learned in seven months. Obviously, youd need to put in the work. But if you show up for it, it gives back thousand times over.
Why is it important that the projects you’re involved in connect the physical with the emotional?
Emotion is energy in motion. It lives in the body, and we’ve been conditioned to ignore it. Thing is, most of our suffering isn’t actually caused by painful emotions – it’s caused by our resistance to them. We stuff them down, they get stuck in our bodies, and that’s what feels shitty.
When we put our bodies in motion, it gets everything moving again so it can be released. And when we’re not storing a bunch of tension and unprocessed stuff inside, our bodies become a source of pleasure! We’ve actually got space for new ideas.
Dancing gives us access to parts of ourselves we’ve forgotten and inspiration we never knew we had. Whenever I’m stuck on a project or going through a hard time, I hit the dance floor. Everything feels different on the other side.
Tell us about the mix you’ve put together for us – is this representative of what people would hear at BODY LVNGUAGE events?
It’s definitely BODY LVNGUAGE flavoured… like the express version, a sonic trip in an hour.
I put it together on my flight to Las Vegas, where I just landed in a new home after three years of nomad life. I never expected to end up here, and this moment in time was the inspiration for the mix. All the adventures, challenges, heartbreaks and massive leaps forward … it feels like I just got spit out onto shore by a tsunami, and I’m SO here for it.
You can also find a zillion live mixes from BODY LVNGUAGE (formerly known as The Get Down) on SoundCloud here.
Any specific tracks of moments you’d like to highlight?
We go a LOT of places in a short amount of time … there’s a story if you listen close, and a sweet treat at the end from IFÉ, one of my favorite music projects in the universe.
Anything you’d like to add to round us off?
Love what y’all are doing. Thanks for having me and creating a channel for so much good music to flow!
Hunger of the Pine (Jody Wisternoff & James Grant Remix) – Vaults
Wouma – Juliano Gomez
Banana – Akkan
Dreams – Romare
Nang’o feat Labdi – Ouie
Nala – Benjy, Darksidevinyl
Kofi (Cioz Remix) – Daniel Rateuke
You’ve Got to Let Go If You Want To Be Free – Zedd, Disclosure
Them Girls (J.Worra Extended Remix) – Black V Neck
Tear the House Up – Zebra Katz, Herve
Head Bop feat. Rell Rock – Tru Fonix
Trespass 2019 (Mark Knight Extended Mix) – Booka Shade
Safe (Joris Voorn Remix) – Joris Voorn, Monkey Safari
Bambu – Killabeatmaker, Papa Kumbe
FIREFLIES – IFE