Not a lot of things would get me out of my habitual television-binge Monday nights after a long first weekday back at the office. Actually, probably only a few things: the end of the world, dolphins magically shooting confetti and cash out of their blowholes at Seaworld and my first official SOFI TUKKER experience are definitely at the top of the list. Well, one of those actually happened, and no, we’re not talking about the Roe overturn (end of the world still pending).
SOFI TUKKER was closing out their Wet Tennis Tour in my town and I wasn’t going to miss it.
Known for their almost bi-annual appearance at CRSSD, San Diegans are well familiar with this enigmatic EDM duo. Not I, said the fly. I clearly need to get out more, for I miss CRSSD every. single. time. I don’t know why the fest always has to land on a weekend I’m elsewhere, but that is how it happens every fall and spring. That said, I’ve grown to explore SOFI TUKKER on my party jamz Spotify playlists, usually bumping them before an epic night out or while trying to stay awake at work. Well, my time had finally come in the form of a Monday night and I was going to take what I can get.
Walking up to SOMA looked like approaching the line to get into EDC — all glitter, all neon, all genders, all accepted. You could immediately feel the heat walking inside the sold-out indoor venue, with wall to wall people just in the lobby trying to get water and merch. It might’ve been an early Monday evening on the outside, but you would never had guessed from the dark, sardined dance floor going crazy to Mary Droppinz once in the main hall. All smiles, Mary spun some familiar faves into the mix, even calling her dad to the stage who was in town for Father’s Day. Awwwww.
Already dripping sweat, I made friends all the way to the front of house, hugging so many strangers just because they liked my pants.
This had to have been the happiest crowd in existence. Before SOFI, the lights dimmed for Bob’s Dance Chop to take the stage — four absolute dolls bound by the love of dance. Turn’s out, they all met each other at San Diego Pride one year, began a dance studio and then ran into SOFI TUKKER performing at one of the many CRSSDs prior; Sofi admitted they just HAD to pull the Bob’s boys on tour after that! So, as a fabulous intermission before the main hurrah, the Bob’s boys entertained a handful of choreographed lip syncs to jock jams and disco delights, pulling out the entire stage crew for an emotional group hug and last dance! This was the tour end, after all.
Once the Bob’s boys did their thing, the stage crew revealed an LED scoreboard onstage, complete with two giant pink tennis balls on either side of the stage. The wiring on those bad boys indicated they weren’t just there for decoration… as SOFI TUKKER walked onstage, the entire place went NUTS. Conveniently matching the enthusiasm, the two opened with “Energia”, jumping all around the stage. Now, I know that Sofi sings in both English and Portuguese, but what I didn’t know was that this badass boss babe also lays down all the bass lines live. And, guitar. Baby, she’s a QUEEN. Second song in, they play “Best Friends”. Tukker intuitively states, “San Diego, you know how to answer me…” as he grabs the mic and walks to the front of stage. I cannot express the sheer volume of the first “YAWP” when Tukker said “Girl, you wanna meet me at the bar?”… I’ve never experienced anything like it.
Shook, I kept trying to shoot the show without dancing too much in the photo pit, which wasn’t successful as “Original Sin” was up next.
Not wanting to leave, I made my way to the middle of the place for a few more songs (including the new “Summertime in New York” single off the new album) and “Awoo!” (including a whole crowd participation dance sequence). Tukker had already turned around and started drumming on the slots of the scoreboard for the intro to “Best Friends”, but now turned to Sofi and said “I’m gonna give Sofi a point, since she hasn’t messed up a city in this entire tour during that last song”. He then walked over and knocked on the scoreboard to give her a point. YEEE, interactive scoreboard AND electronic drum kit visualizer! What a trip.
1-zip, the band went into the next song, only for a stage crew member to sneakily run behind and give out points to the both of them to make it all of a sudden 13-9, Sofi. The “tennis” match continued on and, with the amount of perspiration dripping down my entire body, it brought a whole new meaning to “Wet Tennis” (the name of their new album… I don’t know if I mentioned that. If I didn’t, go check it out. It’s hot sauce. You’re welcome). It was right around this time, when they brought the Bob’s boys back out that it was well past my bedtime for me to function AT ALL at work the next morning. Alas, I had to be a responsible adult and leave the rave early. But, I raved on a Monday like an adult should, damnit!
Just from this brief brush with SOFI TUKKER, I’m more hooked for life than ever. Go to this tour if you can, you won’t regret anything besides not doing so sooner.
Photography by Kristy Rose