The Burning Man Influence on Spencer Brown

Jul 9, 2024

Photo of Michela Iosipov

Michela Iosipov

3 min read

San Francisco-based producer and Spencer Brown draws profound inspiration from his experiences at Burning Man, a festival known for its unique blend of community, self-expression, and radical inclusivity. For Spencer, Burning Man is not just an event but a touchstone that reinforces his artistic philosophy and approach to life.

In an Instagram post, Spencer Brown says "Burning Man is my favorite place on Earth. For me, it’s a yearly spiritual reset and inspiration harvest. I enter with an open mind to grow to become a better human and musician."

The festival's environment, often misrepresented in the media, offers Spencer a space for authentic connection and community building. He finds that the challenges faced at Burning Man, such as unpredictable weather and the need for self-reliance, foster moments of camaraderie and support that are hard to find elsewhere. This spirit of unity and resilience aligns closely with Spencer's own values and principles.

Spencer distills his artistic philosophy into four guiding principles, drawing from the ethos of Burning Man. The first principle is to "be kind to everyone around you," a reflection of the supportive and inclusive community he experiences at the festival. This principle emphasizes the importance of kindness and mutual respect in all interactions, both personal and professional.

His second principle is to "make music from the heart," which means creating art based on personal passion rather than following trends. Spencer believes in the power of genuine expression and staying true to one's artistic vision. "You make music that you want to make — no exceptions," he explains, underscoring the importance of authenticity in his work.

Spencer's third principle extends this approach to his DJ sets, where he insists on playing only the music he truly loves. This ensures that every performance is a genuine reflection of his tastes and values, creating an authentic experience for his audience. His fourth principle addresses the challenge of content creation in the digital age. Spencer advocates for posting content that aligns with his values, rejecting superficiality and maintaining authenticity in all his online interactions. "Anything I put online needs to be aligned with my values, and it needs to be authentic," he asserts.

Throughout his career, authenticity has been Spencer's guiding star. He often takes unconventional paths, such as releasing his first two albums as continuous mixes against industry advice and debuting his record label, Diviine, with an 18-minute synth jam session titled "18-minute loop." His thoughtful social media posts, which stand in contrast to the short-form video content favored by many of his peers, further illustrate his commitment to genuine expression.

Spencer Brown's connection to Burning Man continually reinforces his dedication to these principles. The festival's emphasis on community, self-expression, and authenticity mirrors his own values, providing a powerful reminder of why he creates music and shares his art with the world. As he navigates the music industry, Spencer remains steadfast in his commitment to staying true to himself and his artistic vision.

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