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Artist Features

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Spotlight: DJ Windows 98

So you’re a devoted Arcade Fire fan, huh? Well, we thought of a few things you probably don’t know about frontman Win Butler. 1. He’s boss at basketball 2. He launched a Haitian coffee, RaRa, whose proceeds go to Partners in Health for Haiti. And 3. Butler moonlights as DJ Windows 98, a project that places Caribbean sounds alongside iconic American musicians. During his sets, he has dropped new music from Kanye West, lead sing-alongs to Nirvana, and danced along to Michael Jackson. At his SXSW party this year, Butler brought along his own crew of sorts: a live percussion session of two gilded congo drummers and a dancer.

Though it seems surprising that Win Butler would be spinning Afrobeat, a glance at DJ Window’s Instagram helps contextualize the Haitian influence in his sets (and in Arcade Fire’s latest album Reflektor). Additionally, Butler’s wife and bandmate, Régine Chassagne, also has family ties to Haiti. Though the Canadian is obviously no direct conduit of Haitian culture, his vinyl set clearly reflects his deep appreciation of its music.

Now that you’re all caught up, the last knowledge we’ll drop on you is that DJ Window 98 will perform at LPR on August 27. But make sure to turn down your fangirl before you show up, because, as Butler himself has pointed out, DJ sets are much more fun when you’re dancing around with your friends rather than ogling the DJ – even if he does happen to be a rock deity.

-Sydne Wheeler Larsen

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