This woman dominates Columbia’s rave scene with a cowboy hat and a mixing table

The cast of Columbia locals are rife with complaints that there just isn’t anything interesting to do in town. Any good townie would tell you that the best parts are usually found somewhere in the dark, the kinds of places you can hear before you can see.

Lately, that sound has been a siren’s song with thumping bass in the background, the cadence seeping through the walls of your local rave scene and beckoning you to take a closer look at the emerging talents of DJ Wandergirl.

Wandergirl, a Hilton Head native, arrived in Columbia in a pre-pandemic world and has spent her life wrapped up in music.

“My mom is into all types of genres, so I’ve been surrounded by music my whole life.”

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DJ Wandergirl is a Columbia-based DJ serving up beats and vibes. 

Certainly not expecting to find herself behind a mixing table, and definitely not in front of a room full of people, Wandergirl gains a confidence she’s never seen before when she DJs. She stays content in a powerful energy she’s carried all her life.

Wandergirl’s sound gives way to the clandestine meeting of a feminine, kick-ass energy that meets with the tension of those chaotic moments when you lock eyes with someone in a crowd. Paired with a stage presence scarcely found behind a mixer, Wandergirl mixes music that just makes sense.

“I try to pick up a natural flow, always asking if it will make people dance.”

The process starts with a list. Making sure to write down every song in the set, arranging them, then rearranging them to make the pieces come together with a natural cohesion. Without trying to adhere to too much of a theme, the sets tend to fall into place with an underlying message to have fun, let loose and, most importantly, to be yourself.

A proud member of the LGBTQ+ community, Wandergirl makes sure to keep that promise to always be herself, and that’s reflected in the music she’s playing — and the person she’s becoming.

Drawing from memories of dancing with her mom, Wandergirl curates her sets with a mix of throwback inspiration, neo-soul and hip-hop undertones and contemporary music that allows her to stay relevant by keeping in tune with her audience.

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DJ Wandergirl is a Columbia-based DJ serving up beats and vibes. 

Lately, that relevancy has sounded like artists Amaarae, Don Toliver or even drawing from her mentor, DJ Monday Blue, an all-vinyl mixer out of North Carolina who is credited for inspiring and leading Wandergirl on her journey to become a DJ.

Otherwise self-taught, Wandergirl started out with gigs at her friends’ birthday parties before moving up the ranks to perform in local haunts like New Brookland Tavern, Art Bar and Bangback.

Wandergirl is slated to keep making waves in the city’s growing rave scene. Surrounding herself with like-minded local talent has kept her in the company of powerhouses like Maya Wang, the Camp! Collective and The Mixstress.

Want to stay out late and hear the temptation of this siren’s song? Follow the thumping bass toward fate — Wandergirl posts her sets on Instagram @djwandergirl.

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