The origin story of Guerrilla

In this series, we discover the hidden gems and the very best that Amsterdam’s nightlife has to offer. With all the creative brainpower in this city, it is no wonder that there is a new event, venue, or DJ around every corner. Let Numéro guide you through the electronic maze.

Creative development seems to be a side effect of the corona lockdowns. CLUB.RECORD wasn’t the only one that saw the light of life during that time, but Guerrilla took it to the next level. Guiding their guests through bushes to get to their event. All it took was four guys and a dedication to partying.

Bushes and barbed wire
Marc, Dave, Alex, and Janick met each other through their collective love for music and events. Within no time, they decided something has to be done during the lockdowns. And something meant an illegal rave. This was a logical move, considering that they all have backgrounds in business, hospitality, and organizing raves. So first things first: the location. Dave: “I remembered an area in the woods, close to Thuishaven. When we got there it was overgrown and there was barbed wire everywhere. We had to use a trimmer to get to the place.” 

The logistics
So there they were, standing in the middle of some forest, with nothing but silence around them. The boys started cutting away the overgrown place to make room for the DJ booth, bar, and of course, space for dancing. Organizing an illegal party during the lockdowns is not something to take lightly. Living in a constant rush of adrenaline and the fear of getting caught, they started carrying out all the equipment to the hidden spot. Imagine heavy speakers, DJ equipment, and dragging a whole bar out there without getting caught. If they were caught, all the equipment would be taken, and that is something you really don’t want to happen. 

All the guests had to be present at a certain location at a certain time. From that spot, vans were driving on and off to get everyone there. No one could know the exact location, so it couldn’t get leaked. From the outside of the forest, you really couldn’t see anything was going on there. You could hear the music from a distance. But because there was almost no way to reach the spot, no policeman could get there. The boys created their own unreachable, almost Narnia-like place. More than 400 people attended and they kept on partying until 9:00 the next morning. Dave: “At that moment we knew, we had something very special in our hands.”

The first event exceeded everyone’s expectations and the word about Guerrilla spread like wildfire. From worrying if anyone would show up to more people than they would ever dare to dream. More events followed, and 1000 people attending wasn’t even an exception anymore. Yannick: “People from all over the country came to Amsterdam for Guerrilla, it was really something special and unreal.”

De Binnentuin and A’DAM
Now that the pandemic days are over, Guerrilla became a household name in the event scene. With editions at beloved locations like Koepelkerk and Transformatorhuis, and even below the rivers in Breda. But don’t think that’s it for the boys. They also host a monthly night at Lovelee called De Binnentuin, and you can even catch them playing their tunes at the A’DAM tower. 

The next Guerrilla event will take place on February 18th at IJland.