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DJ “Tiki Chris” at The Wreck Bar, Fort Lauderdale Mermaid Swim Show

DJ Riff, aka "Tiki Chris" for tropical gigs, with the world famous Marina the Fire Eating Mermaid DJ Riff, aka “Tiki Chris” for tropical gigs, with the world famous Marina the Fire Eating Mermaid

Sometimes DJ Riff moonlights as DJ “Tiki Chris P” for special tropical and Tiki themed events. Such it was for a 3-month stint at the world famous Wreck Bar, at the formerly Yankee Clipper hotel on the beach in Fort Lauderdale.

From November 2017 through February 2018, Tiki Chris spun vintage and exotica tunes for the also world famous MeduSirena Aquaticat Swimshow and Burlesque shows. The underwater shows are performed in the pool at the B-Ocean hotel…and the Wrck Bar has “porthole” windows that look into the pool!

“This is without a doubt one of my all-time favorite gigs, especially the burlesque shows, for obvious reasons,” Riff aka Tiki said during an interview. “The room is great, a real survivor from the mid-century era, complete with original shipwreck decor. And the “mermaid” shows…they’re so much more that mermaids. They swim, they dance, they do acrobatics underwater in time to the tunes. There’s nothing else like it.”

For the hours before, between and after the shows, Tiki played a mix of 1970’s and ’80s pop and dance tunes at the request of the hotel’s management. “We disagreed on the music that should be played,” he said. “I knew mid-century standards and Exotica was what is needed there on show nights. They wanted to try to make a South Beach dance club. Dance? Where?” he laughed, “The bar is small and is filled with tables and chairs. Whatever, I played the music they wanted, and people seemed to dig it.”

For the half-hour before and during the shows, Tiki played a mix of original exotica and modern exotica/retro tunes with a beat, mostly supplied by Marina the Fire Eating Mermaid herself. Those tunes were perfect for the right feel for the Aquaticat shows, and really got the crowd going and performers in the swing.

“The burlesque performances were my favorite,” Tiki says. “The performers would do old-fashioned stripteases underwater, down to pasties and g-strings. Now you have to understand, these women are athletes…they train every day for these shows, and it shows! If you think it’s easy to dance underwater to tunes like The Naked Gun theme, try it…it’ ain’t. And they don’t use oxygen tanks or hoses. Watching them perform is truly the coolest gig. They swing man, they swing.” Tiki also noted that on a few nights when it was too cold to do the swim, they would take the Burlesque show inside, with live vocals and stripteases right there in the bar, giving the place a real speakeasy vibe.

Marina the Fire Eating Mermaid and DJ Tiki Chris at the Wreck Bar in Fort Lauderdale Marina the Fire Eating Mermaid and DJ Tiki Chris at the Wreck Bar in Fort Lauderdale

“I’ll never forget my time there,” said Tiki, “When I got to be part of that history, part of a world-famous show by incredible performers led by the incomparable Marina the Fire Eating Mermaid, part of what made Fort Lauderdale what it is today. And to work with these swinging ladies at one of the last remaining porthole bars in the world was really fantastic. I’d gladly go back any time I’m invited.”

As it turns out, Tiki was invited back to DJ a private Aquaticat show for The Hukilau in June, 2018, and hopes to be back there again this year.

  • by Mack_Hammer_53
  • posted at 3:04 pm
  • January 3, 2019

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