Body & Soul / New York
was lucky enough to be out in New York for the week and catch the Body & Soul reunion so here’s a little blah of the week got there Thursday night, went over to the slightly...
was lucky enough to be out in New York for the week and catch the Body &
Soul reunion so here’s a little blah of the week
got there Thursday night, went over to the slightly bizarre apartment we
decided to rent again (decorated with African artifacts and huge wall
sized canvas’ – cheap, massive space and a great location -
www.sohobandb.com should you fancy it), crashed out and got up Friday to
get meself a digital camera.
Then went over to Dancetraxx for the first fix and was frankly
disappointed by the poor amount of decent NY house available at the
moment. Bumped in to John Davis (B&S promoter) carrying a large sack of
money and saying how it’s going to be rammed, we’re filming it for a
video to be released, done special t-shirts etc etc.
Blagged a last minute gig before I went out so that evening played at
Turntables on the Hudson with Jeannie Hopper. It’s normally on a boat
but this time it was in a tent next door out at Pier 63 – NY was minus 5
so attendance was unsurprisingly down to about half, but it was fun none
the less – playing in NY compared to London is always a treat – people
actually react and jump up and down like loons.
I had to get the sound guy to set up a mic before I went on and so went
next door to the boat, where the party is normally, to find him. the
reason why they weren’t using the boat was there was a gay party on.
Imagine 600 shirtless chaps going hell for leather in a red lit
submarine with sweat dripping from the ceiling, at least I hope it was
sweat..and you get the idea. Anyway decided the mic could wait til he
turned up back nextdoor.
Saturday decided to take it easy as was planning a day of going to
Shelter early on Sunday morning before B&S so wandered round Central
Park and went for a quick drink in the Beekerman hotel bar on the 26th
floor - great view of the city and over the Hudson to New Jersey. Had a
few too many bottles and completely caned the credit card on Verve
ensuring we felt like death for Shelter in the morning. Finished the
evening off with some home delivery pizza’s which were like very thin
cardboard with topping’s drawn on in crayon. And they tasted of sugar.
To round off the romantic evening we fell asleep fully clothed on the
Shelter is completely unmissable for me but only managed to get there
for about 8am on Sunday morning – that’s the time Timmy Regisford
normally finishes his disco classics section and starts to get deep in a
house style. We turned up and walking into a hot club before breakfast
takes a bit of getting used to I must say. Didn’t really get into it to
be honest and the girlf wanted to go and lay down again so probably only
stayed a couple of hours. I think it was quieter than usual cos most of
NY was saving themselves for B&S that afternoon. Normally there’s loads
of people having their weekly work out to Timmy, but it seemed the
dancers weren’t there in the usual numbers. It’s their 13th anniversary
this Sat so maybe poeple were saving themselves. Last time I went I
counted 5 people spinning on their heads at once and that was 7.30am,
you might get the same number dribbling on the floor in London.
Regisford is always brilliant, the sound system sounded a bit harsh mind
you - there's a noise meter in the booth so he knows when to drop it
down a touch - but Shelter is worth the price of the airfare alone any
week of the year - just don't mention 'bags', 'british airways' and the
word 'lost' to Pirie..
So after snatching a couple of hours more sleep and a Resolve later
we’re excitedly standing in the queue for B&S at about 5pm on Hubert
Street, and would you credit it, met the English crew from 'On Hubert
Street' amongst many other bods. All rumours about mental queues and
stuff appear groundless and we’re in after about 10 minutes. We’re first
greeted by a wall of B&S merchandise and despite my cynisicisissm cough
up 20 dollars for a t-shirt to polish the motor with, and so does
Dish out a couple of CD’s, say hello to a few bods, grab a beer and then
pick a spot to the side of the booth where there seems to be a bit of
space. It’s already busy but the club space is wicked and bearing in
mind this one off party was to commemorate the closing of it before
being turned into flats, I only wish I’d made it to B&S before. Balloons
hung in bunches from the ceiling, bloke with light sabres waggled them
around on a podium, and immediately I noticed how good the lighting was,
Ariel (jumping round like he's playing the records) perfectly changing
the mood to suit the tracks being played, this really made such a huge
difference through the night.
The crowd was amazing, as with Shelter it was so nice to go somewhere
and see a great mix of people, ages and colours and characters. The
music played was amazing too: Joe Classell played like Ian Curtis on a
3-way but makes complete sense there and he lifts the whole crowd.
Krivit, the least showman like of the 3, simply played my favourite
music throughout the night. FK tore it up with his effects and provided
the perfect slightly tougher and techier complement.
The 3 of them all played superbly, easy to tell who’s playing what but
it just works so well between the 3 of them, a seamless flow all night
between new and old of all genres. Too many tunes to mention and
remember but personally a proud moment for me to hear Strings of Life
played there and see the reaction it got.
The night was meant to finish at midnight I think, but a rumour spread
that it was going on til 4, and by about midnight it had nicely thinned
down on the dancefloor. FK got on the mic at about 3 or something and
gave a short speech about the party and the people, easily could have
been a rather corny address but it was genuinely heartfelt and a nice
We stayed til about 3.45am as was totally shattered with jet lag and
general weary legs but was a top night out - we'd been there for nearly
11 hours in fact so must have had somethign going for it. To criticize,
just for the sake of it, the sound system didn’t blow me away. They had
to use the digital Phazon system (installed as they decided to leave the
venue) supplemented with a top up, but it was good enough and again
better than most UK clubs systems.
Spent Monday picking up a few more bits and pieces before heading to
FK’s Deep Space night at Cielo in the 'meat packing district’. Could
hardly walk so spent most of the night sitting down, but frankly I was
pretty blown away by the whole night. Francois was just fucking
brilliant, the best I’ve ever heard him play. Reggae to RnB, Latin, Fela
tracks, new Claussell jam, Roland Clark’s 'Resist’ all sitting alongside
Amen breaks and more techno – sounds like it wouldn’t work but using a
laptop, effects box and the usual, it’s all shoehorned into something
pretty incredible. Oh yeah, and he played Purple Rain and everyone
wanted to go and dance to it – thats how good. Again Ariel was on lights
and that affords the luxury of being able to change a mood instantly so
the changing music works a treat too. The club has the best set up with
a Funktion One sound system I’ve heard and the walls of Cielo are part
of the light show too – not many spaces in the UK go to such lengths.
Tuesday after great Sushi at Japonica on University we went out to see
Maestro (film about NY nightlife from loft and gallery era onwards) just
to continue pissing the girlfriend off with musical obsessiveness.
Unfortunately I fell asleep after about 10 minutes for a little while,
(actually no idea at all how long) but it seemed a real fans
perspective. It’s been criticized for poor production, lighting etc but
I thought it just added to it’s charm. It’s rough, tells fragments of a
story but no-one else went and did it so fair play. I enjoyed it and
will watch it again when fully conscious at some point.
Didn’t mean to cack on for so long, so enough already as they say. But
again NY has provided with me a bit of inspiration and rejuvenated my
enthusiasm to continue putting on some parties over here. If you never
been just pay the money and go as besides the well known stuff like
Shelter there’s loads of smaller parties on too and you can always
justify the airfare by spending more money on records, electrical goods
and trainers (Magic Shoes on Bleeker, Japanese couple buy trainers and
stick 'em out the back for 10 years).
Anyway got some good pics so I'll post them when I sort out how the