Interview: Space Yacht Co-Founders Rami Perlman & Henry Lu On The Secrets To Their Success

Los Angeles locals know the underground staple and mid-week party trailblazers Space Yacht. Formed in 2015 by founders Rami Perlman and Henry Lu, it’s a powerhouse organization in the scene supporting up-and-coming artists until they become huge stars.

Space Yacht has also thrown events all over the world, expanding to highlight locals in Vegas, New York, Seattle, San Francisco, and international destinations like China, Taiwan, Singapore, and more.

Furthermore, they’re known for their successful Tune Reactor series on Twitch where new producers can send in their tracks for feedback and advice, but the pair also frequently sign music to their label Space Yacht Records on the spot during Tune Reactor broadcasts

We sat down with Space Yacht’s founders Rami Perlman and Henry Lu to talk about their event philosophy, how they keep their shows fresh, and their upcoming Space Yacht 360 show at AREA15 in Las Vegas:

Credit Bright Lights Digital Art

EDM Maniac: So let’s start from the beginning. How did you two meet and how did you get your start with music event organization?

Rami Perlman: We met at a startup company that we were both working at that focused on running social media accounts for celebrities and big musicians. I was in the music department and Henry was in the data analytics department. But we became friends through music.

We’d both be staying late and I’d be cranking music in my office. I had started my DJ project, LondonBridge, around the same time. So I’d play him stuff I was working on and that’s kind of how we became friends.

In terms of how Space Yacht started, selfishly I was very interested in launching my DJ project and I didn’t want to beg people to play shows. I just loved the idea of starting a party and then Henry had experience in doing that.

We then happened to meet a person who had a new venue called the Golden Box and he was like, “Hey, come throw your party at my place. I just opened this speakeasy in Hollywood.” And the first one did so well that the owner of the club came up to me and was like, “You gotta do this every week.”

EDM Maniac: You’ve become staples of the LA underground scene throwing sold-out midweek parties with secret lineups of top names. What would you say is integral to your success?

Henry Lu: I want to say consistency. We have stayed very consistent in the sense that it’s always fresh and new.

Part of our identity is we’re oftentimes the first co-sign. So as these new sounds from new DJs crop up, we have our way of interacting with them either through our curations or getting to know them over time.

Rami Perlman: Yeah we want to be a platform for an artist that’s just starting and I think our value in the ecosystem is that first co-sign.

At this point, three years down the line of doing our Tune Reactor series on Twitch, 95% of what we signed to our labels comes from the show.

Henry Lu: Yeah and we’re eight and a half years in and a lot of the people that we worked with five or six years ago are superstars.

Credit Bright Lights Digital Art

EDM Maniac: You’re constantly hosting events and you have stages at all these huge festivals. How do you keep everything fresh and new?

Henry Lu: There isn’t a day where we’re not listening to new stuff. And with Tune Reactor, now we have a system of actually giving feedback.

Rami Perlman: It’s also because we have many disciplines. We throw events, we have a clothing company, we have a record label. That stuff I think is also a way that our team stays fresh because in our morning meetings, it’s always something different.

We’re able to take our brains into different places as a way to not be always under the same pressure. When you have a great show, you pat yourself on the back for like five minutes with a beer after the show, and then you’re literally thinking about the next one.

The other thing I will say, even specific to our Vegas show that’s coming up, we really do a lot of due diligence on who’s doing what locally in terms of the artists. A lot of our shows, outside of Los Angeles specifically, are very focused on making three of the five slots locals on purpose.

Sometimes it’s people that we met through Tune Reactor or Henry will put up a tweet and be like, “Who’s popping in Tech House in Vegas?” And we go through that list very seriously. So the local aspect of what we do is another piece of this puzzle.

EDM Maniac: On June 23 you’ll be taking over the portal at AREA15 with DJ Susan and Kaysin and then later in July with Pickle. What can we expect from this 360-degree experience?

Henry Lu: The 360 brand was just something we came up with as a response to the YouTube-style set. Honestly, shout out to Boiler Room, huge inspiration. And a lot of DJs love just playing with no real barrier between them and the crowd.

Rami Perlman: We’ve had DJ Susan recently and both are incredible performers. And then the show after that, we have Pickle and he’s got incredible animators and visuals who work for his normal show and they are prepping for this one. And so I really think if you want a spectacle plus fantastic house, this is one to check out.

Henry Lu: To be able to find a venue that’s flexible enough to work with that adjusted staging, we’re really excited to get to flex this muscle at AREA15, specifically on the portal because it has these crazy 360 projections on every single wall.

And we’re a brand that also wants to be associated with helping people build a legacy. So to be able to do that a few times in Vegas is pretty exciting.

It’s a real spectacle so shout out to AREA15 for having us. We have these two shows coming up, but hopefully we have more for the rest of the summer and the fall.

Featured image credit Space Yacht

Written by
Danielle Levy

Danielle Levy is an MBA with a concentration in Corporate Social Responsibility. Danielle has several years of experience in the sustainability education world and has held various positions in human resources and intern management. Danielle is passionate about the ties between sustainability and social impact.

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