Everybody needs a little more disco in their life.
Everyone needs a little more disco in their life. A call to go wild and party and dance with no thought or conscience or regard for tomorrow. The swinging 70’s may be long gone but the love for disco hasn’t and it is with great excitement we announce that there will be a disco festival in Liverpool later on this year. Iron your flares, put on your maddest jacket and dancing shoes and prepare to dance like you’re going head to head with John Travolta. The Liverpool Disco Festival returns on Saturday 6th May 2017, following on from last October’s incredible debut and they’re ready to turn The Baltic Triangle into something special.
From a humble beginning in a small, windy holiday centre with 600 attendees and three rooms playing hip-hop, jazz-funk and early US house imports, the Southport Weekender quietly grew to become the UK’s best kept secret – 28 years and 52 events that pushed a remarkably varied mix of sounds to a diverse and friendly crowd spanning generations. Writing in Resident Advisor following a final Minehead send off in 2015, Stephen Titmus noted a distinct ‘lack of posturing, and an enthusiasm on the dance floor that’s infectious. Arguably even more so than the music, it’s the crowd’s effervescent attitude that makes the event special.’ It was a family affair, and to mark a staggering 30 year anniversary in 2017, the crew will join forces once more with Liverpool Disco Festival to celebrate a remarkable legacy that, in often uncertain times, has been a living, breathing and dancing example of Celeda’s declaration that music truly is the answer.
For the past 6 years in Liverpool, just a short train ride from the Weekender’s most memorable home, Hustle have set the city’s soundtrack for state-side house sounds with epic weekly parties introducing many seminal names and bringing back old flames who have previously lit up the north. Last autumn, both parties joined forces to bring the inaugural Liverpool Disco Festival to the renascent Baltic Triangle district of Liverpool: a breath-taking party spanning several venues that exceeded all expectations and set a precedent for a new era of dance music in the city: inspired by and honouring the past, yet always looking forward, searching for that perfect beat.
Musically discerning, dance floor dedicated, party mad and passionate. It almost goes without saying that demand for this year’s festival will be huge. We strongly advise booking tickets early so you can join us in making history. Together, we continue the legacy of underground dance music inspired by Chicago and New York City, and rooted in the UK’s rich clubbing heritage. Liverpool Disco Festival are extremely proud to announce they are returning on Saturday May 6th 2017, following on from last October’s incredible debut event. The weekend carries a special resonance across the UK and beyond, celebrating the 30th anniversary of the legendary Southport Weekender, who along with Hustle and SUNcéBeat present an epic showcase of music in the city’s thriving creative quarter, the Baltic Triangle.
SUNcéBeat and Hustle are bringing together not only all the best parts that made the first Liverpool Disco Festival so special, but adding some more of the music and special touches which made the Southport Weekender unique. It’s a seminal event which has traversed the ages across the predominantly house and disco spectrums, having hosted some huge global artists from Chaka Khan to Jill Scott and A Tribe Called Quest to Gregory Porter. The list of live acts and DJs over the past 30 years makes for mesmerising reading, and it is in this effervescent and revered spirit that the first wave of artists are revealed for the Liverpool Disco Festival.
There are two sublime live headliners to begin with. D-Train are the innovative post- disco duo consisting of James "D-Train" Williams’ vocals and Hubert Eaves III on instruments, who recorded a seminal series of dance music and R&B classics through the early 80’s. They were one of the biggest acts of their decade, producing many timeless dance-floor anthems which continue to have dance-floors rocking around the world, and they perform live at Liverpool Disco Festival. Ultra Naté is one of the most flamboyant and talented house divas of the 1990s, having stayed true to the dance mainstream throughout her career. The remarkable and versatile singer,songwriter and producer brings her iconic voice to Liverpool, and DJs too at the festival.
Over on the DJ side of things, the first wave of illustrious names bring a wide range of sounds to the city. Tony Humphries has got close to 4 decades worth of experience to call upon, from an original Kiss FM pioneer to holding down a residency at one of the USA’s most legendary clubs, Zanzibar – and he headliners with a 4 hour set celebrating the club’s immense history. Tony is a true house music master and brings a touch of mercurial class to the Liverpool Disco Festival. Next up is Joey Negro, a firm favourite on the UK underground who continues to draw crowds of true aficionados eager to hear his latest rework, re-edit or original studio production. Jellybean Benitez connoisseur’s selection of contemporary and classic house and disco has seen the producer and selector undoubtedly deserving the status of a living dance music legend, working with Whitney Houston, Hall & Oates,Talking Heads, Billy Joel, Fleetwood Mac, Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney.
Then there’s Body and Soul icon Danny Krivit; the 80s saw Danny hold residencies at places like Danceteria, Red Zone, Save The Robots, Area and The Tunnel. Much of his work has gone on to become the definitive tracks for DJs the world over, with a continued stream of masterfully executed disco re-edits. Throughout the 80s some magical club music classics had the John Morales’ touch; few can match his remarkable contribution to the world of the enthusiast turned remixer come producer, considered one of true legends of the mix. Connoisseur’s Corner Nick Siano is a SPW legend; it’s no secret that the 70s and 80s were the prime decades of New York City club land, with Nicky Siano at The Gallery. A true pioneer, Siano is credited with helping to launch the careers of musical icons such as Grace Jones, Loleatta Holloway and sorely missed house music maestro, Frankie Knuckles. And Mr Scruff plays a very special Constellations Garden Set. A bedroom DJ since his early teens, Scruff’s rise to fame with his trademark eclecticism continues through to his sprawling genre-skipping sets today.
In the latter years of the Southport Weekender, he became one of the few DJs who could deservedly command an extended set in a line up brimming with international talent. Next up, DJ Spen and Karizma go back to back with their deep and soulful feel good house; individually they are amazing DJs, and together they seamlessly work over many decks in a constant flow of body-shaking sounds. Rahaan is arguably theworld’s greatest crate-digger. It’s an approach that has come to define him, guiding the dance floor faithful through a close up and seamless blend of rare, raucous and rocking underground flavours. And speaking of crate-diggers, Lenny Fontana’s heritage caught the interest of a new generation of disco diggers at the turn of the decade when he shared a ‘gold dust’ five hour recording from the 2nd anniversary of the Paradise Garage from 1979, originally broadcast live across New York City, and he maintains that spirit now. Then Graeme Park has 30 years on the decks and 20 years on the radio, mirroring the story of the evolution of dance music and club culture itself. He has produced and remixed tracks for The Brand New Heavies, Inner City, Eric B & Rakim, New Order, Sophie Ellis-Bextor and more.
Liverpool Disco Festival will also shortly reveal a very special event on Friday 24th February at Constellations, with a legendary headliner making a very welcome return, and an art-inspired story taking place in the build-up. The Baltic Triangle is a historic city central area, which is enjoying a burgeoning renaissance, and is now the city’s thriving cultural quarter. Just a stone’s throw from the Albert Dock – Liverpool’s World Heritage Site – and an abundance of fine bars, restaurants and shops, the Triangle has been reclaimed and resurrected by a growing colony of creative people and independent venues. Many boutique hotels and apartments are nearby for anyone wanting to stay over during the festival.
Grab your tickets here and we’ll meet you on the dance floor.