Quickie: Catching Up With Wrong Island
QUICKIE: Catching Up With Wrong Island
Some clubs would want to make a song and dance about turning five. Afterall, five years of anything is quite impressive, nevermind running one of Glasgow’s most raucous resident nights in a basement off Sauchie Hall St. But as Teamy (promoter and jock at Wrong Island) quite rightly states, it’s not about gimmicks or guests, it’s about music and good times, and this Saturday that sentiment will be all that matters.
Having launched back in 2007 after Nice N Sleazy finally got their hands on a 3am licence, Wrong Island has proved to be a popular constant on Glasgow’s bulging party calendar. Packing the floor on a monthly basis, Teamy & Larry have used years of experience to develop a healthy relationship with their dancers, bringing sounds from across the board to an energetic, anything goes crowd. There’s no pretension, standing about or looking cool, when Teamy strips down to his tiger pants and a swathe of girls rush the stage, you know things are about to get messy. With the flyer for this weekend’s party adorned with quotes and moments from the last five years, you quickly get an idea of how eccentric, fun and care-free the night is, something that is pleasingly refreshing in these days of big names, commercial gain and hard-line promotion. Be it ardent regular or fresh-faced newbie, Wrong Island are definitely doing something right.
Check out this special mix by Teamy capturing the 2am sound of Wrong Island, plus an interview with the man himself:
Synth: Ok, so let's start with the history of Wrong Island and how it all started. You celebrate your fifth birthday this weekend, what inspired you to start the night and what were your intentions on launching it?
Teamy: I'd been working for Optimo for around 8 years and I felt like I'd done my 'apprenticeship' so wanted to do something of my own. I'd done a fun little party with my friend Smasher as a sort of attempt at this, but she'd decided to (quite rightly) concentrate on her PhD so I was now on the hunt for something else. Larry and I had discussed doing a night for a while but weren't quite sure where to do it. There's been a massive increase in the number of late night places in Glasgow in the last few years, but back then there wasn't a whole lot of space for any new nights/choice of venues. We'd sort of put it on the back burner when I got a call from Sleazys asking if I'd like to do a monthly there as they were getting a 3AM licence. That seemed like the perfect place so I called Larry and off we went. We did a one off party with Shit Robot at the Sub Club under the Smash Team Disco name, but as it was Larry and I playing it was pretty much the first Wrong Island.
Synth: You mention in your press release that you don't really put on guests anymore, do you think having a strong resident base has helped your longevity and how much has building a relationship with your punters been involved with that?
Teamy: All my favourite nights have and are resident's nights. There's a much better feeling when you know the crowd, the city, the venue and the DJ you are playing with. It took Larry and I around 6 months to really gel our styles and records properly, but now we know to a certain extent where the other will go and I think it has a great effect on how the party feels which you don't always get when you have guests on. I think that the sort of person that comes along to regular nights is different as well, not chasing the BIG BIG guest. I think it says a lot that we're regularly the busiest night at Sleazy's. Having said that, we have been really lucky (or perhaps wise) in our guests as they have all been really, really close to our vision and they've always fitted in perfectly. We've been talking to Sleazy's about putting guests on again and it's looking like we're in agreement which is great because I won't always be able to make it up from London (as much as I really hate missing the club).
Synth: Making the trip up from London is of course an impressive commitment, what have been your highlights from playing Wrong Island over the years?
Teamy: Aye, travelling up from London is a bit of a pain and getting the time away from work even more so, but it's all worth it around 1-2AM when we get a bit heavier; the hands go up and the bodies start flying about the room. As for favourite moments, there are loads of things that stand out. We always mention things with guests in interviews but my favourite is something that happens almost every month.
I'm maybe letting the cat out of the bag here as it's one of those things that occurs naturally (and I'd like it to stay that way) but every month we seem to get an invasion of people dancing up on the stage in front of the decks (and sometimes behind them). I really like the intensity of DJing with people right in front of me. On my 30th birthday a few years ago I ended up stripped down to my pants with a bunch of girls who'd got on-stage giving me piggy-backs as we all danced to Fern Kinney's 'Love Me Tonight'. There's almost always something I notice every month that makes me laugh or smile and thank my lucky stars that I get to do this for a living (sort of).
Synth: Finally, with it being such a landmark occasion have you got anything special planned for this weekend's party? And for those who may never have been before, what what should people be expecting?
Wrong Island celebrates its 5th birthday this Saturday at Nice N Sleazys
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