If you live in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia and partake in its magical Electronic Music community, then Wes Please is likely a name you have come to know and love. Not every music scene is fortunate enough to have a local DJ that is not only a pleasure to listen to and watch, but also a pleasure to know. Wes is always saving a hello in his back pocket for anyone who may stumble across him on the dance floor at one of the many Footwerk shows that have graced Kelowna over the last decade. He has fostered deep connections and true friendships with other local DJs, dancers, event promoters, and attendees. We have been so fortunate to have Wes Please as a household name, but alas, that time quickly draws to a close. Our beloved Wes is on to a new adventure on Vancouver Island with his partner Martha, and although we are sad to see him go, we know that the community in Victoria is gaining a powerhouse of a DJ, and a gem of a human.
Wes got his start as a DJ in Penticton, BC, a small city about an hour south of Kelowna. His cousin Joey had a production company called Peak Entertainment, which is very well known in the Okanagan. It was Joey that gave Wes his first opportunities to spin for a crowd, as well as his first chance to play at a music festival. In 2013 Wes played Elysium Music Festival in the outskirts of Penticton, an event that many of my own friends still reminisce about today. That was just the beginning for Wes, in 2014 he began volunteering for the Fractal Forest at Shambhala Music Festival. Through the experience of seeing the magic behind the curtain, he started to take music more seriously.
By the time 2015 rolled around, Wes had been picked up by the Okanagans leading nightlife entertainment company, Footwerk Events, headed by JGirl and Manousos. Wes has played countless shows with Footwerk since. He has been on huge bills with artists from all over North America and the UK, to drop just a few names at you, the list includes Krafty Kuts, ASkillz, Marten Horger, Skiitour, Freddy J, Lefy, Mat The Alien, The Librarian, Smalltown DJs, Flavours, Bagobeetz, and Skuzz Sound. Okay, that’s more than a few, but each of them warrants mentioning. When asking Wes about his best memories with Footwerk, his response was something that really emphasizes the impact that a supportive community can make on an artist. “The amazing thing is that every single show I play with Footwerk becomes my best performance and is extremely memorable. If I had to pick one that really had some extra significance for me, it would be from November 2017 where I played a 2-hour set before one of my all-time faves Krafty Kuts. That was when I really started to gain confidence and momentum. Things have really been taking off ever since.” Wes is right about taking off, he’s since played at Shambhala Music Festival TWICE, basically the dream-gig for any West Coast DJ.
It is hard not to link Wes Please and Footwerk Events together. When I first moved to the Okanagan, it was those two names that led me to my new community, and I know it has been the same for many other music lovers in Kelowna. Footwerk has been a huge supporter of Wes, taking the time to personally invest in his journey, and help him progress by bringing attention to both his strengths and weaknesses as an artist. Wes had been attending Footwerk shows long before he became involved with them professionally. “I always remembered thinking how incredible it was that parties like this existed in the club, outside of an outdoor music festival. I still get excited to attend, just as I did back then”. Footwerk has been a special part of Wes Please’s development as a DJ, and he had this to say about the team “I have always valued Footwerk for continuously throwing fun and safe shows with amazing talent both international and local. Anyone from the Okanagan who goes to their shows will appreciate that. They have given me the chance to push past all my limits, and for that, I will always be grateful”
The years Wes Please has spent in Kelowna and the growth he’s experienced as an artist will serve him well on his new adventure on the Island. In proper Footwerk style, there is a Tropical themed send-off show happening inside Gotham Nightclub on the third floor (aka The Batcave, how cool!?) on December 27th. It’s sure to be an incredible night of music from Wes Please, STUND, and myself, Angie C. There’s been a huge response to the event, friends, as well as fans, will be on the dance floor all night to give Wes their best goodbyes and see-you-on-the-farm Shambhahugs. If you want more details on the Tropical Jam with Wes Please and Pals, just click the link under the photo below. FMF wishes Wes Please all the best, and we can’t wait to see what the Island has in store for him!
*Featured Image Via Wes Please*