Time was that Derrick May not only was centre stage, but saw himself in the same way. Many DJs from the early days of dance music were somewhat camera shy. In a culture which was less about the DJ and more about the music, this suited them.
But Derrick May never wasted an opportunity to sell himself whenever a camera was around – hence why there’s more photographs of him in existence than most DJs of that era. However, things have changed somewhat over the past year or so.
Last week, I published a picture where May actually appeared to be hiding behind Kai Alcé, the permanent spectacle wielder, at the Charivari Festival in Detroit. Once again. things have changed. For years, May refused to play or even attend the festival. According to one source, “Derrick thought Charivari was beneath him. He once compared it to having dog s*** on the sole of your shoe”.
How times change. And last Thursday, he attended another event. His close friend Juan Atkins and once even closer friend Ash Lauryn were doing a show. I was sent a picture of him with another individual – who I’ve decided to crop out.
Firstly, he might have done a DJ set in the building? Several of my sources have mentioned over the past few months that May typically only wears sweatbands on his arms when he DJs – hardly surprising given his notoriously frenetic movement during his sets.
And second? Take a closer look at the photo.
Yes, the lens on one side of his glasses is broken. You’re going to get headaches going around wearing those glasses, Derrick – I would have thought you’d have enough of those on your plate already…