Sandra Collins Is First Woman And American In Tranceport Series

DJ's second mix-CD encompasses the diverse styles of trance.

The third volume of the popular trance mix series Tranceport hit

stores June 6, leaving the album's architect, the vivacious

color="#003163">Sandra Collins, speechless.

"I spent, like, a week trying to figure out a quote, because

[Tranceport label Kinetic Records] wanted something from me on

what Tranceport means, and I couldn't come up with anything,"

Collins said. "So, I just tell people I'm trying to make a long story

short. Because I usually play three or four hours, and I was limited to

74 minutes."

Tranceport 3, the follow-up to Kinetic honcho

color="#003163">Paul Oakenfold's landmark first volume and

Dave Ralph's impressive sophomore

effort, may only be the standard CD length, but it packs the full punch

of Collins' notorious sets, such as her crowd-pleasing performance at

last summer's Woodstock festival.

The 12-track mix encompasses the many faces of trance, from the

mechanical opening intro (RealAudio excerpt) by S&S Day Four to Rank 1's African drum-filled "Airwave" (RealAudio excerpt of original) to Dune's soaring "Boomerang" (RealAudio excerpt of original).

"There's a lot of moods that I wanted to capture," Collins said. "It

starts out kind of boring — a minimal groove. And it builds and

goes into hard house and dance-beat trance. It ends up really hard, but

crazy."

'More Than Just A Girl DJ'

Tranceport 3, Collins' second release, marks the first time

both an American and a woman have contributed to the series. Although

Collins is a relative newcomer to the scene, which is primarily

dominated by English men, she has garnered respect by touring

relentlessly and burying herself in every show.

Collins is the kind of DJ you can expect to see jumping out of the booth to dance to her own grooves or wiping away tears during her set's most intense moments.

"She's more than just a girl DJ," said Scott Richmond, co-owner of New

York's Satellite Records, a dance shop with locations around the country that is also one of the largest online dance-music retailers in the United States. "She has made some of the best-selling trance records we have. We've sold 273 copies of 'Flutterby' [her most recent single]. Those are impressive numbers."

Collins, who got her start spinning at the Los Angeles club Metropolis

and has moved on to residencies in New York City and Chicago, shrugs off the "first American" and "first woman" accolades.

"I'm flattered they chose me," she said. "But there's a lot of companies putting out mixes, and I don't think there's enough big trance DJs yet. There's, like, five of them, so they only have a few people to call."

Live From A Studio

Unlike her debut mix, 1998's Lost in Time, which was recorded

live and then edited, Tranceport 3 showcases Collins' skills in

the studio, where she used the computer software Pro Tools to fine-tune

the transitions.

"It's not as big," she said, comparing the mix to one of her club sets.

"The transitions are really hard — to go from one sound to the next in one record — and I really cared about flowing. But you'll hear me in it.

"After I got it done, I was nervous, like, 'What if they don't like it?' " Collins said of Kinetic Records, Oakenfold's popular Warner

Bros.-distributed label. (Oakenfold's Tranceport has sold more

than 125,000 copies in the United States, according to SoundScan.) "And

then the label absolutely loved it, so now I'm really excited."

Collins is supporting Tranceport 3 with a series of live dates,

including high-profile performances at New York City's 6th Element

festival last Saturday and Los Angeles' Electric Daisy festival on June

24.

She promises her sudden fame, which pinnacled last month with a cover

story in Mixer magazine and a feature in Spin, will not

pull her from her underground rave roots.

"I want to be successful at what I do without having to change what I

do," Collins said. "I don't want to alter it to make more money or

become famous. I want to do what I do and hope it all works out."