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EVENTS: Leather Ball XIII

Booty-humping at Leather Ball

DEEP HEATING. Leather Ball DJ Patrick Guay finds more warmth in '90s house than in electro.

As we slide into the hot and sweaty dog days of summer, the upcoming Leather Ball XIII is sure to give you something to pant about. Sat, Aug 18, join reigning Mr Toronto Leatherman Steve Martin, current Leather Fellowship David Kraft and Boot Black Boy Eli as they host the climactic fetish event of the season at the ultimate den of iniquity, the Opera House.

Geared up to spin the crowd into a wanton frenzy with seven hours of bass-thumping, booty-humping tunes is Montreal DJ Patrick Guay. Originally a dancer, Guay knows the body and its rhythms and has worked hard to balance his two passions: DJing and choreography. “I would say that my choreographer side is not as much work as before. I choose my shows, like Black and Blue, so they keep me busy only about three months a year. The past five years almost all my focus has been on the DJ side. My goal is to present DJ/dance shows in the future like I did at the Hot and Dry party two years ago. I was the opening night DJ, took 10 minutes to go change and then did the main dance show right after.”

Working by day as an accountant Guay seems to have his balancing act down to an art. Playing all genres of house music, from dark and deep to circuit diva vocals, Guay likes to shake his sets up. “Sometimes I throw in some progressive trance at the end of my sets. I follow a mood and easily adapt myself to a venue. I would say that my music evolves with the people on the dancefloor. For sure you can’t make everybody happy in a night, but if I have at least 70 percent of the people happy, well that’s great!”

Inspired by heavy hitters like Peter Rauhofer, Satashi Tomiie and Chus and Ceballos, Guay cites fellow Montrealer Stephan Grondin as one of his faves. “I can’t explain why, but he keeps me grooving all the time. He makes me feel good when I’m on a dancefloor and I try to do the same thing for the people on my dancefloor.”

Guay is happy to note the influence of electro house, so popular these last few years, seems to be waning. “I like dirty electro house — it’s sexy — but I prefer house music from the 1990s to 2003, there were instruments in the music. Electro is a lot of metallic sounds or noise and that really freaks me out sometimes. There is no warmth, not much human feeling in pure electro…. But if you mix in some house, that can give you something interesting because you bring some feeling to it. I miss the piano, strings and voices.”

So what can we expect from Guay’s turntables? “I’m playing seven hours of music that night — there’s too many. You have to be there to hear them.”