By Mikkel Hyldebrandt
Chicago-based Ariel Zetina headlines Deep South this month in her Atlanta debut at the queer underground dance party. As a young, self-taught DJ and music producer, Ariel Zetina is being heralded as the future of club and dance music. And as a trans woman, she has found her identity in the process of expressing herself to the fullest through her music.
Ariel Zetina is all about telling a story when she is on the decks or producing her own music. And creating that narrative is precisely what is having people flock to her gigs and parties – because while on the dance floor, you will be taken on a journey.
Creating a story through music resonates deeply with the DJ whose own journey to living her life as a trans woman was heavily influenced by music and the queer community in Chicago. When Ariel moved to Chicago in 2008, she was exposed to queer culture and other trans women and finally felt that she could grow into her true identity. With her newfound identity, and with the support of the community, she began producing her own house-and-techno-based music, which resulted in several EP’s including Witch Hazel’s Godzilla EP (2015) and Cyst (2017).
DJing was a natural extension of producing music, and Ariel quickly discovered her talent for building a narrative and creating a transformative space on the dance floor – all from behind the DJ booth.
Today Ariel Zetina is resident DJ at Smartbar, a Chicago house music institution, where she hosts the monthly Cubic Zirconia party, and she organizes the Rosebud party at the historic Berlin Nightclub, and Ariel’s Party at the Hideout to name a few of her many engagements.
As part of her expanding network of parties, she will be in Atlanta for the next edition Deep South, which will be a perfect match for her desire to take you on a journey on the dance floor and creating a safe space where you can be yourself surrounded by people who understand. So get ready to have this girl make you dance, and see you on the dance floor!
Connect with Ariel Zetina on Soundcloud.com/arielzetina, Twitter, and IG @arielzetina.
Ariel Zetina headlines Deep South on June 16 at the Music Room. Opening sets by Robert Ansley (Deep South/Cardio) and Vicki Powell (Deep South).
Sources: riotfest.org, Chicago Tribune