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Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... EDM

The sound of the island.

Ibiza is known for its dance music the world over, but that is an umbrella term for various different styles. Our series on the genres of music found on the island helps identify the parties, clubs and DJs best suited to your tastes.

This week, we're introducing you to, what has commonly come to be referred to as... EDM (that's "electronic dance music").

Still unsure what we mean by "EDM" or "mainstream dance music"? Take a listen to this:

Follow the playlist here and subscribe to our Spotify channel here.


Borrowing a term from our American friends, "EDM" has become a catch-all abbreviation for anything that falls under the umbrella of dance music. That could be Dubstep, Trance, Moombahton... well, you get the idea.

For the purpose of this article and playlist, what we're referring to might better be described as mainstream dance music or commercial dance music.

To elaborate further, that's anything with a beat you can dance to, where your parents might recognise the name of some of the DJs - but they'll probably hate it!

This type of music is often accompanied by big production: synchronised pyrotechnics, countdowns, stadium-sized crowds and the image of an affluent, aspirational lifestyle.

Here on Ibiza, there's plenty of choice for EDM. Though it's worth saying, that these parties tend to take place in peak season (late June to end of August) when the island has its highest concentration of younger tourists. In early or late season, this reduces considerably.

Ibiza parties featuring EDM music:

Swedish House Mafia at Ushuaïa | 17 June only
Eric Prydz at Ushuaïa | 21 August only
F*** ME I'M FAMOUS! at Ushuaïa | Mondays
Future Rave at Hï Ibiza | Fridays
Calvin Harris at Ushuaïa | Fridays
Tomorrowland presents Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike at Ushuaïa | Wednesdays
Armin van Buuren at Ushuaïa | selected Sundays in June and September
Armin van Buuren at Hï Ibiza | 22 and 29 August only
Steve Aoki at Amnesia | Tuesdays
Pure Pacha at Pacha | Thursdays
NERVONation at Eden | Wednesdays
Martin Garrix at Ushuaïa | Thursdays
Alok at Hï Ibiza | Mondays
Hardwell at Ushuaïa | 14 August only
Nathan Dawe at Ibiza Rocks | Thursdays
Becky Hill at Ibiza Rocks | Tuesdays
Sigalaland at Eden | early season Thursdays

The origins of EDM

Ever since the early '90s, dance music has been infiltrating the charts. The sub-culture managed to breakthrough to the mainstream, often by taking influences from pop music, giving tracks a vocal-hook and generally making them more radio-friendly.

We're sure you'll be familiar with songs like Rhythm Is A Dancer, Show Me Love, Mr Vain - all old school anthems!

Euro-dance and the like was huge in Europe, but it took the giant USA market until the late Noughties to catch on. This is when a superstar DJ and producer by the name of David Guetta, had the clever idea to record dance music with some of the world's biggest R&B and Hip-Hop stars. Suddenly EDM exploded! America jumped on it first, before it took over the world.

Funny really, considering modern dance music had originated in America with House almost 20 years earlier...

Hot on Guetta's heels were more global stars-in-the-making: Swedish House Mafia, Calvin Harris, Skrillex and later acts like The Chainsmokers, Hardwell and a young kid by the name Avicii.

Even established dance music icons, such as Tiësto and Armin Van Buuren, saw a new opportunity, and made a conscious change of direction.


Because us old-timers are set in our ways and don't like change, some amongst our ranks look down on EDM and the culture that goes with it. In truth, dance music fans had been waiting decades for their music to be "taken seriously". The minute everybody started liking it, we got upset! There's no pleasing some people.

Personally, we agree with the sentiments of Carl Cox:

"EDM is a gateway to discovering more underground dance music." Absolutely.

Find here our other music guides:

Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... House music
Tech House
- Deep House
- Afro House
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Minimal music
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Techno
- Melodic Techno
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Reggaeton
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Garage
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Disco


This article is part of our Ibiza Virgins' Guides, packed full of information on how to get the most out of your stay on Ibiza. Check them out.

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