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Push the Button

Above & Beyond, Can I please just #Pushthebutton?

by Jennifer Fall

When the announcement of Above & Beyond’s Common Ground tour was made, I immediately purchased my tickets for every major city I could. Anjuna family is literally no joke. After attending countless headlining shows, festivals, and then their ABGT 250 edition in Washington… I suppose you could say I became a super fan literally overnight. I’ve been listening to Above & Beyond since before I knew who the artists really were (Oceanlab still gives me chills) and in the interest of sounding more interesting, I won’t disclose my favorite song (Oops..Sun and Moon.)

When my promoter friend in Indianapolis told me he had something special coming up, I assumed it would be more of the same bass music that has permeated our scene for years. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Indianapolis landed a tour date for Common Ground! Not only would Above & Beyond be in my city, but I would be able to share the memory with all those that I love most in my life. Many of whom have never had the chance to witness their magical performance live.

See, I have this dream. Every festival or event I go to where Above & Beyond is headlining, I get psyched up to push the button. It’s amateur hour; I thought this would be an easy task. After 10 shows running, I have learned that it is anything but easy. It has become somewhat of a running joke in my social circle. “Who’s gonna push that button Jen?” I continue to be positive, but after seeing them countless times… it has continued to elude anyone in my group other than the infamous Baedine. The Indianapolis button… well, let’s just say, it has my name on it. I’m putting it into the universe now. I’m more than ready to push that button. 

Above & Beyond’s ” Common Ground” Out Today & We are Blown Away

Since this is a major life goal, I decided to speak to others on how they, in fact, pushed the button, and what it meant for them to live in that moment. They shared their secrets with me below, so that if you also dream of crossing pushing the button off of your bucket list, these stories can serve as inspiration.

Christopher Vagenas:

Pushing the Button at EDC Vegas has no age limit!

Pushing the Button at EDC Vegas has no age limit! Image Credit: Above & Beyond

The email that started it all: “I am currently going to attend Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) Las Vegas with my brother and grandparents, and I’ll keep this short and sweet. My grandmother turns 75 years old Friday, June 17th, and my grandpa will be 84 years old during the time as well. I’m trying to give them the best experience that they can have while they are there at EDC, and would love for my grandparents to push the button. We have to keep the EDM scene going for as long as we can and this would really help to prove that the age difference has no effect in a place like EDC, and everyone loves everyone.”

It all started with my bro and I going to EDC in Vegas in 2015. We kept begging them to go. But they didn’t want to. They knew what EDC was and the whole rave scene. They felt they would be made fun of for their age. 2016 rolls around and we ask them if they wanna go to EDC, better yet we bought their tickets for them and told them they’re going. They couldn’t say anything but yes. Now we try to make it special for them as much as we can. In 2016 my brother messaged Above and Beyond asking if we could “hit the button” they said yes the weekend we were already there. Above and Beyond actually flew them to EDC in the helicopter with them and they took the limo back with them as well. A bunch of cool things happened in between while they were there. In the picture, you can see we are wearing Holy Ship hats on stage. So we told them about Holy Ship and how it was a cruise to the Bahamas. They love cruises, and now that they understand how loved and cherished they are, they said absolutely. They said it makes them feel young again which I love. So we went on 9.0. They absolutely loved it, said they’ve been on 15 cruises and HS is hands down their favorite of them all. When it was time to sign up for 10.0 and 11.0 my bro and I asked them which one they wanna go on. My grandpa said, “what do you mean which one, I’m going on both”. Then my heart melted, so we went b2b. They can’t wait for the next 1!

Nadine Pasterczyk:

Nadine Pasterczyk pushes the button at Ezoo 2017

Nadine (Baedine) Pasterczyk pushes the button at Ezoo 2017. Image Credit: Alive Coverage

I had a game plan to just stick in the back of the crowd for A&B. But something came over me and I grabbed Rays hand and told him we were gonna go to the front. So at the end of Zedds set, I dragged him through the crowd and it was almost like fate that as we got to the front, 2 people that were on the rail left and gave us their spot.I didn’t have a sign or anything. Just an A&B kandi necklace. I believe that I was chosen because of my energy and obviously my dance moves. But as soon as they pulled me over the railing, I had a rush of emotions come over me. I was overcome with excitement and couldn’t stop smiling. I immediately ran over to the other lucky ones who were chosen and embraced them. When I was backstage and they began playing “Blue Sky Action” I started crying. That was the first song I had ever heard from A&B. The song that got me to start listening to them. A song that I got to push play for myself many times. So when I got to get on stage and push play for that song for thousands of people; I couldn’t fight the tears of joy the streamed down my face. I’m beyond grateful for having the opportunity to experience pushing the button. I believe that anyone else who shares this passion for dance music should try to have this experience too.

Daniel Allan Chopovsky:

Daniel Allan Chopovsky Pushing the Button

Daniel Allan Chopovsky Pushing the Button at Above & Beyond

I have a pretty cool story about pushing the button I figured I’d share. My name is Daniel, I’m 20 years old and I’m currently a student at Boston University. After my freshman year, I decided to take a year off to focus on music. That year in December, my best friend and I decided last minute to take a 12-hour road trip from Kentucky to Dallas to see the boys. When we got there, we decided we’d make a sign just for fun that said push the button, pick me, etc. Towards the end of the show, Shamus came to pick people to push the button and I caught his eye. I went to go do it and I was literally shaking. I always wondered (and dreamt) would it be like to play music to that many people, and went Paavo and Tony greeted me, I was overwhelmed with not only seeing them but by the endless sea of people I was looking out into. I pushed the button while my best friend got it all on video, and it was one of the best moments of my life. This was on December 30, 2016. Here is where it gets cool though. I grew up listening to Oceanlab. My brother is 15 years older than me and when I was in second grade I naturally received his 120gb iPod Classic as a hand-me-down, and that’s how I discovered their music. They got me through times of getting bullied in middle and high school, and so when I got into writing music more seriously, I really wanted to make music like theirs. So on December 30, when I pushed the button, I made it my goal right then for them to push the button for me the next year (2017) on Group Therapy. 6 months later, to the day on June 30, they gave me my first spin on the show. And then another, and then another. In the last 6 months of 2017, I totaled 6 plays on the show, and it all started with me pushing the button for them. You may have heard some of the tracks yourself, I’m 5ALVO, nice to meet you!

Larissa Goldman:
Larissa Goldman Pushes the Button at Red Rocks for her 41st Birthday!

Larissa Goldman pushes the button on her 41st birthday at Red Rocks. Image Credit: Larissa Goldman

I pushed the button at Red Rocks! A simply breathtaking experience that I have not ever come down from! Quick background…A&B has carried me through the best and some of the most difficult times in my life. Most importantly their music was a large part if my wedding in May 2017! My wife took me to Red Rocks for my 41st birthday and she was the creative mind behind my poster. She was determined and focused to get me picked and her energy and determination was the driving force. We got to Red Rocks early with our close friends and we selected a spot in VIP to enjoy the show at. I was in heaven from the moment we got there. I was with my true friends and the love of my life. Our energy was full of positiveness and happiness. We were executing good vibes all over. We enjoyed the music and the company of one another and we just had a vibe that was special that night. I held my birthday bucket list poster high and proud all night, I was having the time of my life. My wife saw Jono make eye contact with her and he held up a heart with his hands. Then a security guy came to me and grabbed me taking me up to the stage (I tried to ask if she could come too but he said only one…she told me to go) I got to sing with Seamus backstage and enjoy the moment of pushing the button with a forever new friend and soulmate forever! I tried to take it all in, the Red Rocks amphitheater is beautiful and I soaked in the beauty, the experience, and the excitement as much as I possibly could. My dreams came true. I wish my wife could of come up with me, I can never thank her enough for helping make it all happen, without her the perfect poster and good energy/vibes wouldn’t have been there for me that night. I smile and love talking about it…I am still on cloud nine.

Heather Kowalski:

Heather Kowalski Pushes the Button at Ezoo

Heather Kowalski Pushes the Button at Ezoo. Image Credit: Above & Beyond.

September 5th 2015, I woke up to one piece of kandi on my arm. It said “Believe”. Something just felt right that day. Not an hour into Electric Zoo, I go to show someone the poster I made and I had lost it. Luckily I had found it….. then broke my Above & Beyond cuffs. Feeling like the world was against me, I remembered: “Believe”. 4+ hours on the barricade, tired, hungry, ready to leave. I held on. I danced and cried. Then something magical happened. I was pulled over the barricade. 10,000+ people, a live stream of people, including my family, watched me push the button. All I can say is, it’s like nothing you’ve ever experienced. If you’re to try to push the button, believe in yourself and never give up hope. Your time will come.

These are such wonderful moments! I look forward to hearing more of your stories about #pushingthebutton, and all things Anjuna! See you at the next tour date AnjunaFam!

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