In 1988, as rave culture began to ripple across the UK, a spirited English lad named Lee Reynolds pedaled his BMX dreams across the Atlantic to Los Angeles, chasing visions of soaring jumps and sunlit horizons. He was as unrestrained then as he is now. However, on two wheels, Reynolds' fearlessness led to fractures rather than rhythmic ruptures.
By 1992, his BMX dreams came to a halt, and he soon found himself entranced by the allure of electronic psychedelia. Thus, one of the West Coast's most revered DJs embarked on his journey to the Desert Hearts movement, causing a fervor with each set.
Fast forward a quarter-century, and Reynolds boasts a rich tapestry of experiences, consistently infusing the dancefloor with eccentricity and enchantment. He refined his craft in the West Coast's iconic dance hubs––Moontribe, Moonshake, LiB––cultivating an expansive musical palette, a fondness for the mystic, and the belief that dance gatherings should transcend to a spiritual plane.
“When I DJ, my goal is for people to be enraptured, entirely in the present, feeling that only the rhythm matters,” he expresses. “I don’t just want to play music people can groove to; I aim to play tracks that ignite the urge to dance. I envision sounds that make it feel as though extraterrestrials are about to descend on the dancefloor.”
2011 marked a transformative year for Reynolds. A serendipitous meeting with a spirited group of young San Diegans became the purpose he had been cultivating all his life. Joining forces with Mikey Lion, Deep Jesus, Marbs, and Porkchop, the inception of Desert Hearts took place. The subsequent years saw bi-annual renegade gatherings and rigorous tours, solidifying "Papa" Lee Reynolds as the linchpin in what has rapidly evolved into the most influential cultural movement in US dance music.
“In Desert Hearts, my primary role transcends music. It's about guiding us spiritually, ensuring we spread positivity and always stride on the right path,” reflects Reynolds. His wisdom is evident, but when behind the decks, Reynolds transforms, invoking his myriad experiences and worldviews into a dancefloor spell that's undeniably magnetic. Be it house, techno, acid, or breaks, it's all synthesized in a cloud of mystique, with Reynolds as its energetic nucleus.
Modern dance music narratives often highlight meteoric ascents and instant rewards. Yet, Lee Reynolds' journey stands as a testament to the depth and richness that comes with time. “I've harbored this passion for eons, always sensing the impending crescendo,” he muses. Now, as the crescendo reverberates, it seems destined to resonate perpetually––with Lee Reynolds orchestrating its rhythm.