A&E » Arts

Unity building through music and dance

Carrying on decade-old tradition



By Nicole Fitzgerald

Who: DJ Tone

What: Halloween Party

When: Tuesday, Oct. 31

Where: Merlin’s

Tickets: $10

It takes a certain kind of man to backpack around Central America with more than 60 records in tow.

But nothing has been straight forward for the once Canadian Air Force airframe technician who prepared to ship out to the Gulf War, but instead found himself buying a snowboard and shipping out to Powder King in northern B.C., then Banff, Vancouver and finally Whistler when the war ended.

Anthony Catton remembers walking into Merlin’s on his first visit to Whistler and meeting then bar manager Mike Varrin, who hired the Ontario native as a DJ. Ten years later, djtone still mans Merlin’s turntables. He also founded one of Whistler’s most infamous celebrations, the monthly Full Moon parties, and recently put Whistler on the mixing map, placing third in an international DJ competition earlier this month. He hosted the Seven Hours of Power show as the main programmer for the now debunked Radio Free Whistler station.

He is probably the only person to run for Whistler council using DJ as his title prefix and join the Whistler homeless club for five months when the 2003 Pemberton floods struck.

Tone — a lazy man’s version of Tony — is what you’d call a bit of a free spirit. The vegan, toque totting, thirty-something boy marches to his own music, trying to make the world a better place. Forget about meditation and social activism (although he probably does both), djtone’s tool of the world peace trade is his mixers and turntables. Dancing and music is what it is all about.

“I believe music and dancing can help heal a lot of the problems in the world by people expressing themselves,” says the soft-spoken man taking time out from recording at his home studio. “My goal with my music is to use it to promote positive vibrations and unity worldwide.”

And he doesn’t mean in an airy-fairy kind of way. He’s quite pragmatic in his approach. Music is about vibrations. The world is made up of vibrations. And therefore, the two affect each other. So djtone aims to spin out uplifting waves, allowing people to let loose and dance into who they are.