Something a little different from the usual this weekend….an ’80s night in a local cocktail lounge.
Although my main business is wedding entertainment, the winter months tend to be a little on the quiet side (winter weddings aren’t quite so popular), so it’s an opportunity to work on different types of event.
Add to this, I grew up in the ’80s and it’s when Imagine began originally, and what’s not to like?
The email came in a couple of weeks ago from David, co-owner of ElevenA, a new eatery and cocktail venue in Ely. Being nice and local and something different, I decided to accept the challenge (I don’t usually do public events such as this), and went for a little visit.
It was never going to be a “proper” Retro Roadshow night with the old fashioned light screens due to space restrictions. So we agreed for the lightweight “Micron” booth and the “Cube” (see above…it looked really good in the window with a modern day glitter ball shining on top).
On the night, I had less space than we originally planned for (I was supposed to be in the front of the building but a last minute change of plans put me at the back).
Undeterred, the “Micron” booth was set up but with only a single speaker (which incidentally has little to do with the sound quality because I always run the disco in Mono….(unless you’re standing in exactly the right spot you’d never know it wasn’t stereo!) or indeed the volume….modern speakers are good like that :).
I should mention that future events have already been spoken about and that for those, I’ll be at the front of the building because it will work better.
So….how did it go?
David, his partner Simon and myself all agreed that it could go “either way”. ’80s nights can be hit and miss at times with people either loving the music, or absolutely hating it. Getting the balance of the music right is a fine balancing act. The ’80s was a MASSIVE decade for music covering the last throes of Punk right through to the twangy/cheesy factory produced beats of Stock, Aitkin and Waterman.
The amounts and styles of music you can play at an ’80s night can be mind-boggling. It can either be the really cheesy Kylie Minogue/Jason Donovan/Bros end of the decade as most DJs prefer to stick with because it’s “safe” territory, or it can be a real mix of the New Romantics, rock, cheese (there wasn’t actually too much “cheese” produced in the ’80s thankfully…most of that was the ’90s!), some very good power ballads and light hearted pop. I catered for all tastes for this one.
On the night – I got it spot on. A lot of different genres from the decade were catered for, guest requests came in aplenty, and there was plenty of dancing too (the cocktails obviously helped a lot 😉 ).
So, although not something I normally take on, that was a refreshing break from the norm, and one which I enjoyed a lot (as did David and Simon who themselves spent a lot of time throwing shapes on the ad-hoc dance floor). Plenty of compliments, several business cards given out, and a big smile on my face on the way home….even at 2am on a cold and frosty Sunday morning.
I’ll let you decide. I don’t normally publish playlists because they vary from event to event and are wholly dependable on the guest requests on the night (I NEVER pre-plan a playlist, preferring instead to react to how guests are responding on the night).
A lot of the songs below were guest requests, and because of the nature of the venue…different guests arrived and left at different times so there were a lot of repeats….but my job is to entertain so if that means repeating a track then so be it.