Claude VonStroke, Mija & More Holy Ship Veteran DJs Share Wildest Memories


Hold on to your captain hats, Shipfam, Holy Ship is about to set sail from stunning Cape Canaveral, Fla., on its annual voyage to the Caribbean for 2 extra back-to-back weeks of absolute insanity. In 2019, Holy Ship celebrates its 12th and 13th sailings, and whereas there are just a few new faces, everyone knows it's about these returning favorites.

Veterans are essential to the Shipfam neighborhood, as a result of they assist virgins get their sea legs, and veteran DJs, like Claude VonStroke, 12th Planet and Mija, know what they're in for, which implies they've deliberate these units to be additional particular and are totally ready to go completely wild. Some of one of the best music of their careers was truly born on Ships of the previous. 

Holy Ship and set sail Saturday to Wednesday, Jan. 5 to 9, and Wednesday to Saturday, Jan. 9 to 12, respectively. The first crusing is bought out, however you may nonetheless hop aboard the second crusing. Check the website for particulars.

In honor of the premiere sea-fairing expertise, we meet up with a few of Holy Ship's favourite returning acts to listen to of their most cherished, if usually blurry, Holy Ship reminiscences.

Chris Lake

In a second of drunken insanity of the Spice H2O stage, I had a chat a few beat I hoped to get a vocal on from Green Velvet. I discussed it to him while he was drunkenly swaying backward and forward, sporting a Mr. Incredible superhero outfit, and he stated, "I’ve an thought, let's report it now." I ran over to my cabin to get all the pieces arrange, whereas my crew tried to get him to the cabin (a really laborious process that took detours the meals courtroom and an impromptu piano duet with Mr. Carmack). We received within the cabin, talked shit for 10 minutes, then reduce the vocal in 15 seconds. That ended up being what you heard on our observe "Deceiver." Here's some footage taken proper after we reduce the vocal and listened again to it for the primary time. Ten minutes after this, I went to do my B2B set with Chris Lorenzo, which was the launchpad for us beginning our Anti Up mission. It was a really busy hour.


The quantity of debauchery that happens on Holy Ship is unprecedented and sometimes (as a result of excessive stage of alcohol consumption) forgotten. However, on final yr's ship, I discovered myself in a uniquely magical scenario. It started on day three. I awoke at 5:00 p.m., dying of a hangover, and working late for the group signing/meet and greet. Thanks to my shipmate's ethical help and a really darkish pair of sun shades, I survived the complete 2.5 hours of assembly and greeting every Shipfam attendee with a smile (sans voice). After the meet/greet was over, I raced again to my suite to proceed dying in personal, whereas making ready for what was presupposed to be a legendary DnB/Jungle set with my pal Gina Turner. Unfortunately Gina didn’t make it onto the ship (RIP) and due to this, my expectations have been extremely low. In the midst of my serotonin-depleted pity occasion, I couldn't assist however suppose to myself, "No one goes to point out up. Nobody cares. Everything is horrible," over and over, however I had a job to do. I used to be adamant about placing on one of the best present that I presumably may, even when I needed to do it alone. So just a few hours handed by (or like, 10 hours, however who's counting) and eventually it was time. I walked to the stage round three:00 a.m., and started organising my SD playing cards. As anticipated, only a few folks occupied this room, validating my low expectations. As quickly as I started DJing to all 10 folks, I began to let free and revel in myself. About 15 minutes later, I rotated, and to my shock, I discovered a wild Craze jamming behind me, alongside a random tall man. I made a decision to kick up the tempo and go in a bit tougher. I went with Noisia's remix of "Divide and Conquer." Right when the intro kicked in, the random tall dude got here up behind me and excitedly gave me a excessive 5. That's when it hit me — this random tall dude was Thijs of Noisia. "FUCK," I believed to myself, attempting laborious to not fangirl far and wide. So Craze and Thijs jumped into the set and have become a low key B2B. Soon after, extra buddies started to point out up; Soul Clap, Redlight, Claude Vonstroke, Justin Martin, AC Slater, and everybody wished a chunk of the motion. There was in all probability simply as many DJs behind the decks as there have been folks in attendance, however the vitality that flooded the room left no empty area. Each track getting crazier than the final; again slaps and cheers crying out each time somebody dropped the following observe. I in all probability solely performed 5 information in whole as soon as the B2B picked up. There have been simply too many legends on the decks, all nostalgically thriving off of one another's choices. I can actually say that I had by no means felt this stage of vitality and synergy in my total existence as a DJ. For these few hours, we received to expertise one thing that felt magical, trustworthy, and actually fucking enjoyable. Come 5:00 a.m., the sound guys lastly kicked us off, regardless of our starvation to maintain going. We amicably shuffled out of the room, nonetheless excessive off the vibe, and headed straight to artist lounge the place we saved the jungle flowing till the solar got here up.

Claude VonStroke

The most fascinating a part of Holy Ship to me is the blending of genres. Even although I'm a home DJ, I’ve performed with and made buddies with a few of the very unlikely characters. I’ve performed B2B with Tiesto, Diplo, and Skrillex. I’ve frolicked with DJ Mustard, Ty Dolla $ign and even met Pharrell. Last yr, Jauz and Snails and I all performed probably the most sudden deep home set within the Theater. I’ve performed jungle with Mija, Noisia and Redlight. I’ve performed hip hop with A-Trak and Too Short. I’ve frolicked with everybody from Coyu to Fatboy Slim. This is the one occasion the place (in the event you dare to go a bit bit out of your zone) you may find yourself having some actually superb experiences. The most essential factor I’ve discovered is that everybody is a musician at coronary heart. Lots of actually underground acts assume that the extra business acts are manufactured or pretend, however I guarantee you that for probably the most half, everybody actually loves the music they produce. Even although it won’t be your style, it doesn’t imply they aren’t cool folks. Keep an open thoughts, and you’ll have a good time.

Zeds Dead

One of the best issues about Holy Ship to me was all of the impromptu again to again units that occurred, and that I received to be part of. These are units that might solely occur in this kind of scenario the place artists are simply hanging and having enjoyable with nowhere to be. We threw a scotch and cigar occasion one of many days. We hadn't put a lot thought into it other than securing the cigars, scotch and smoking jackets, and after we arrived, we realized there was no music or sound system. With all of the folks there, it had numerous potential to be turned up a notch, so we shortly ran round and arrange some CDJs and audio system. We ended up taking part in a B2B set with Gorgon City and Diplo, which was one of many highlights of the Ship for me, and I feel a reminiscence the followers received't overlook both. Another fascinating one was once I was wandering across the Ship one night, and I stumbled right into a theater the place, minutes earlier, Dillon Francis was scheduled to play however needed to cancel as a result of any individual had spilled a drink onto his laptop computer when he began. Flosstradamus was attempting to save lots of the present and referred to as up just a few people who have been on stage to play, me being certainly one of them. It ended up being a back-to-back with myself, Floss, Skream, and Disclosure. I keep in mind Skream on the mic itemizing off the artists and saying, "You'll by no means see this once more." A-once-in a-lifetime expertise for people who have been there. Not saying it was a spectacular set (I’ve no reminiscence of what we performed), however these sort of issues are what make Holy Ship a particular expertise.

Manila Killa

Holy Ship is a type of festivals that brings you and the folks round you nearer. (You're 1000’s of individuals caught on a ship for just a few days…what else is there to do?) You're certain to run into different artists, buddies, managers and followers as you stroll by way of the lengthy, maze-like hallways aboard the ship. One reminiscence that caught with me, and what actually defines the flexibility that Holy Ship permits an artist to make with their followers, was once I was strolling by way of a type of cabin hallways final yr. I walked by a fan, they usually made some awkward eye contact. I had no thought in the event that they knew who I used to be, so I saved strolling. Then I heard the footsteps cease, and the individual rotated and requested if I used to be who they thought I used to be. I stated sure, they usually instantly beginning crying (I by no means know what to do in these conditions). It seems they have been a giant fan of my music for years, and that my music's helped them by way of numerous laborious occasions of their life. It was a touching second, as a result of it was at that second I noticed why Holy Ship is such a particular competition — the barrier between followers and artists is damaged down to some extent the place I used to be even starstruck round a few of the artists taking part in. It made me notice that everybody, together with artists, are simply human beings who wish to take pleasure in and rejoice good music.

Green Velvet

After so many superior years within the scene, once I mirror again, Holy Ship at all times stands out as certainly one of my most enjoyable and rewarding experiences. There are a lot of tales I may inform, however the one which stands out probably the most is the evening once I was hanging out with Justin Martin, Fisher and Chris Lake. Chris Lake had given me certainly one of his instrumental tracks, and proper there in the course of the ocean, some lyrics got here into my head. So I went to Chris and stated, “I’ve the phrases to the observe you gave me. Is there a spot we are able to go to report it?” Chris stated sure, and we went to his cabin, and one of many largest tracks of the yr was born — "Deceiver.”


I keep in mind one time on Holy Ship, I used to be hanging out with Snails and Kill The Noise we had all completed our units and wished to get into some debauchery. I can’t keep in mind how we received so far, however Snails threw me on high of the bar desk whereas everybody sang "Bohemian Rhapsody." The room was a hazy fractal of excellent vibes and good folks really dwelling within the second, forgetting about all the each day struggles in the actual world, totally disconnecting from the previous or the longer term and simply being there. I’ve a really blurry reminiscence of reaching for one more patron's drink whereas I was nonetheless on the bar and them giving me a glance that stated "solely as a result of we’re in the course of the ocean." I’ve stated for a very long time that Holy Ship is certainly one of my absolute favourite occasions, and there’s so many tales I want I may inform, however have been gonna maintain it PG-13 for now. I can’t await my third journey on the boat. It’s by no means in need of unforgettable.


In all honesty, after so many excursions of Holy Ships, it's laborious to recollect rather a lot, however that for my part (and lots of might agree) is the marker of how good a time you're having. I do, nonetheless, have distinct reminiscences of the maiden voyage. I feel maybe as a result of it was the primary time we had ever been thrown into that sort of expertise and no person actually knew what to anticipate. That first yr, the attendees and artist have been all on the identical flooring, so that you'd be in your room in the course of the evening and other people would simply be door knocking like, "Skrillex, are you in there?" It was positively not your typical cruise. Then, there was the one evening round three within the morning when some random man simply climbed throughout our balcony and simply popped his head in our room and was like, "Heyyy! Oh, nope…I'm two over I feel," and simply saved going prefer it was no factor. It was nuts! All in all, there's nothing like Holy Ship, and I'm able to make new reminiscences…or in my case, overlook 'em.

Walker & Royce

Last yr, there was suppose to be a Dirtybird occasion earlier within the day on a personal island, however after we received as much as go, it was so windy that the occasion received postponed. Justin Jay was presupposed to play first, however went again to sleep as soon as he discovered it was postponed. They lastly determined to have the occasion on the boat a lot later within the day, however Justin Jay was nowhere to be discovered and ultimately missed his set. It wasn’t his fault. He was simply by no means informed the proper time to play. Catz n Dogz performed in his place, and the entire time, Justin Martin saved getting on the mic and yelling, “Justin Jay everyone! Give it up for Justin Jay!” Later that day, we have been strolling across the ship with Justin Jay and other people saved stopping him to inform him how nice his set was. He’s the nicest man on this planet and simply saved explaining to everybody that it wasn’t him and that he was actually sorry. We couldn’t cease laughing about it.

Will Clarke

For me, Ship is at all times a surreal time. The quantity of reminiscences I have all flip in to at least one massive blur. However, I can say there have been just a few moments that have been fairly magical. When we have been on MSC Divina, I was taking part in in a small room. I invited Shiba San, Justin Jay, Christian Martin and Ardie to return play B2B with me. I used to be anticipating nobody to show up. I was fallacious. This room was slammed, folks have been crowd browsing and getting free. That was truly my first Ship, so an excellent intro. On final yr's Ship, I held a dwell barbershop with MK, Born Dirty, Chris Lake and Walker & Royce the place we have been all simply speaking shit and taking part in information, while Mika (Born Dirty) was giving folks hair cuts. Was nuts.

12th Planet

A cool reminiscence I’ve from Holy Ship truly occurred final ship. Valentino Khan and I have been strolling by way of the gang, and I seen this man dressed up as Ric Flair. I pulled him off to the facet and reduce him a Ric Flair promo, and he was impressed. It was the one which went ,“You’re speaking to the Rolex sporting, diamond ring sporting, jet flying, limousine driving, lady stealin’, wheel and dealin’ son of a gun!” After I reduce the promo, I purchased the man a shot and informed him how cool he was for dressing up as Ric Flair for Holy Ship. I don’t suppose he knew who I used to be on the time, however he positive did instantly after I began to play my second set within the Dubstep Dungeon. While I used to be taking part in, I seen that Valentino had on the WWE title, and I used to be like, "WTF!" The man that dressed up like Ric Flair ended up realizing who we have been, freaked out and provided us his Rolex and WWE title and we have been like, "Holy shit, that is superior!"


On the final evening of 2016, a time slot within the theater opened up from three:00 a.m. to four:00 a.m., so I got here up with an insane thought to do the largest most epic B2B the Holy Ship had ever seen. I requested the Holy Ship guys if I may do it, they usually have been very happy to let me. So, I received all of my buddies to return and we did this epic B2B2B2B2B2B2B with Flosstradamus, Tommy Trash, Slumberjack, Peking Duck, Valentino Khan, GTA, 12th Planet, Wax Motif and possibly just a few others — it was simply so loopy. I turned, like, a conductor of the music, ensuring it by no means stopped, and conserving this nine-DJ occasion going. That evening was really certainly one of my favourite occasions out of like the opposite million incredible reminiscences. I want I had a video of it, however fortunately, Valentino Khan received one.


It’s laborious to choose only one memorable second, as a result of to be trustworthy, I don’t keep in mind a lot of them. One of the numerous causes I like this occasion is as a result of it’s so in contrast to the rest. Showing as much as the ship is like coming to your first day of college, as a result of I get to see all my buddies once more in a single place and discovering our cabins is like getting seat assignments in school. From the seaside occasion to late evening room hangs, being with buddies and assembly new folks is what I sit up for yearly. Every ship awaits a brand new journey.