At a festival dedicated to a genre of music that does not rely on lyrics, it's interesting that many attendees chose to represent their nationalities: Ultra Music Festival goers came in flying the flags of their home regions, from Northern Ireland and Catalonia to France and Australia.
Some wore them as capes over their backs, others as skirts and a few as bandanas over their heads and faces. Click through the slideshow above and see how many flags you can identify.
Did you go to Ultra? Why do you think people like to wear their flags?
Starting today, thousands of electronic dance music aficionados will take over Bayfront Park in downtown Miami for the Ultra Music Festival. If you happen to find yourself in the middle of that scene, you'd hear a lot of German, French, British English, a panoply of European voices.
Ultra Music Festival and Winter Music Conference bring to Miami the beats and bass of electronic dance music, or EDM. But if you don't get what all the noise is about, here we bring you an explainer, and below that, a short tutorial on making the beats so many are crazed for.
HOW TO MAKE ELECTRONIC DANCE MUSIC:
1. You start off with a simple four-beat bass drum. This is the basic head-nodding element.
During Miami Music Week, some earnest, intellect-stimulating events sneak their way through EDM's unruly buzz. Maybe it'll just be you and another bespectacled, mustachioed friend. Maybe you'll run into one of us.
Shaded area indicates the reach of Ultra's sounds. This is not a scientific map, but rather one based on observations. We drew the lines from the point where ambient sounds from the urban environment become louder than the music itself.
Standing outside the gates of Ultra Music Festival, an audiologist and her colleague are staring at their sound level meters. The devices track the decibel level of the atmosphere, giving us some unsettling clues as to how safe the environment is for your ears.
After an extended buildup, the beat finally drops. As the fans go crazy, the bass starts to pump. Even a few hundred feet from the stage, casual conversation is strained.
This Friday marks the beginning of a nearly two-week sprawl of events surrounding Winter Music Conference, and what's come to be known unofficially as "Miami Music Week." It's a time when the entire world of electronic music descends on Miami in a frenzy of industry palm-greasing and parties.