Since 1996 I’ve been feeling those proud DJ nerves as I made my way across the bass infused grass of Preston Park to one of the Brighton Pride dance tents I’ve had the privileged to play for over the years. At first I was merely a bar soundtrack supplier, my nerves made worse by the sight of my DJ heroine Vicki Edwards skipping towards me as I played a not-so-cool crowd-pleaser, ensuring my embarrassment rose as high as those Venus Rising nights she inspired me with back in ‘91. The years that followed have always been tinged with the kind of nerves that make a certain Pepto Bismol the DJ’s best friend. But be it playing for the beat feast that was the epic Candy Bar Girls Tent following the mighty Kinky D onto the decks before the sizzling Slamma (umbrella and all) gave us all a lesson in house music, or in the Wild Fruit Dance Big Top that was to become home for our disco family over the decades it gave us Pride, Preston Park for one Saturday afternoon every August has become the thing of loved up legends.
A loved-up legend I am thrilled to announce Queenie and I will be part of again this year as the Pride powers that be declare faith in us two old disco birds (why thank you Sami, Paul and the team) and ask us back to help them celebrate, campaign and fundraise for Brighton and Hove Pride 2019. Alongside DJs Sami Kubu, Lola, Alpha, Summer Ghemati, El Conchitas, Toya Delazy, Saski and King K we’ll be bringing the goose bump grooves to the grass of Preston Park once more, ensuring the Diva World Dance Tent is the destination for those determined to dance their Pride away with style – with the odd gay, gay, gay disco moment from me and Queenie. Obviously.
Twenty-three years on from the first time I nervously attempted to put the needle on the record at Brighton Pride (and took several attempts to get there) I’ll be back, celebrating with the best of people at the best of Pride events. An event that has given me enough memories to last me a loved-up lifetime, memories of sunshine moments and rain filled giggles, a flying Dolly Rocket and fabulous Mr Duffie, of wet poles warnings and glorious mud fests, of Wayne and his wiggles, those baby oiled dancers and Mr Bunny, of dancing Darlings and glorious Gary’s, of Vicky, Alistair and co keeping us clipboard calm, of placards and protests, Heron and Pitron, Jones and Johnny, Mikalis and our delicious Dame Edna, of disco with the Calabash cuties, of Rocket making us Candy butter and Ms Red and Ms Lucas keeping us playing (regardless of the poets next doors noise complaint), of Dulcie delivering Soulsearcher anthems, Maze and Master’s forever grins, of Mr Kemp’s belief and passion, and of endless summer’s of I Feel Love, right there, DJing next my missus, the only place I ever want to be. The place of friends old and new, found and remembered, those disco darlings I’ve come to call family, my Pride family. A family I can’t wait to play with again in 2019. See you at the front Brighton Pride.
The Diva Dance Tent at Brighton Pride 2019, Saturday 3rd August 12:00-22:30. For more info and tickets click here.
Brighton and Hove Pride is a Pride to be proud of. It is a Pride With Purpose. Alongside the smiles, sunshine and good times, Brighton Pride’s sole ethos is to raise funds and awareness. Pride has it’s routes in the community and in the last four years has raised over £455,000 for local good causes. Through the Rainbow Fund Grant Awards, Brighton Pride supports local charities and community organisations that change the lives of those living in our city.