Long before taking over world stages, Ibiza clubs and festivals, Jamie Jones' iconic Paradise party was merely a dream. Here we take a look at how the event went from the terrace of DC-10, into a global party Mecca.
After gaining huge success in the latter part of 2011 with hit remix "Hungry for the Power", Jamie Jones was faced with unprecedented attention. Already a well respected DJ and producer in the underground tech house scene, the Hot Creations head honcho was now pushed to the forefront of electronic music, bringing a whole group of new followers with him. In the summer of 2011, Paradise was born; brainchild of the now world renowned Jamie Jones.
But before they were taking over the world, owning festival stages and sending crowds wild, Paradise was just an idea. Created with one thing in mind, bringing good house music to the few that really knew what good music was. Curating names like Green Velvet, The Martinez Brothers, Patrick Topping, Carl Cox, Marco Carola, Richy Ahmed and many, many more along the way, Paradise is now a clubbing right of passage.
A Brief History of Paradise
There isn't much doubt behind the influence that Paradise has had on the house music scene in the short period that it has been around. After a successful first season, gaining momentum and notoriety on the terrace of DC-10, the brand was invited back again by the owners. Starting off with just a couple of parties in 2012, Paradise held it's first residency in 2013, bringing in a whole new wave of artists and success. What started out as a few hundred people soon became thousands.
The new kids on the block were making waves on the island and had amassed a now cult following. Pulling in the likes of Richie Hawtin, Lee Foss, Tale of Us and Loco Dice in your first season is not something that is easy to do but it shows the pull that the event had and still has today. Soon, word was spreading about this new party at DC-10 with this incredibly good music, headed by Jamie.
Now, the events are widely considered as some of the best in the world, always pulling some of the biggest attendances at festivals and clubs around the world. Jamie Jones, his residents and the special guests that appear are something of legend. This is a testament to the fact that every show they put on, the artists bring their A-Game. Thankfully, the guys can deliver. Main stages are packed and warehouses fill up, due to the calibre of event that people know they will be getting with Paradise.
We recently attended two of Paradise's biggest shows in the calendar. Their event in the iconic Manchester Store Street venue for The Warehouse Project and their debut show at Printworks, London's newest super venue. Expectations were high and the excitement around both shows was massive, with both being completely sold out. First up was Manchester.
The Warehouse Project
Situated in an old bomb shelter in Manchester, Store Street is a place that is steeped in history. It's seen more parties than most will ever attend in their lifetime, sells out every year and has an underground feeling to it when you step inside. There is something dark about the atmosphere but in a good way. Intensity is what this venue demands from clubbers and artists alike. Something which was achieved by the Paradise artists.
Having heavyweights like Green Velvet, Richy Ahmed and Maceo Plex as your headliners is bound to draw attention to your event. Couple all of those names with the likes of Latmun, Detlef, Pirate Copy and Mark Jenkyns and, well, you get the picture. If expectations were high, they were raised even higher after hearing the first kick drum resonate through those brick walls of store street. What followed was nothing short of incredible.
Paradise's takeover of WHP was mesmerising. Every artist brought music with them that demanded respect, something that showed from the very beginning. As the night rolled through, the vibe picked up. All of the clubers in unison, holding on to each hi-hat hit as though it would be their last. Rolling through from Richy Ahmed, into Green Velvet and Maceo Plex, the main man stepped up to the decks to take over the concrete arches. As the beats rolled through the night, a cold November morning appeared and it was closing time before you knew it. If this was what happened at WHP, we couldn't wait to see what happened at Printworks.
If Store Street set the bar, then Printworks raised it even higher. Now in its second season, Printworks hosts a mind-boggling 6,000 people all packed under one roof. When you have that many people, all facing the same way, waiting on the drop of a beat, there is something rather hypnotic about the crowd. You know that they are all there for the same reason and that in itself is beautiful. Combine that with some of the best DJs, music, and venues around the globe and, well, you get the picture.
When we walked in wAFF already has the crowd jumping up and down. Smooth tech house rhythms are flowing from the speakers, adding to the immediacy of the Paradise vibe. Not long after that, the Geordie born and bred selector, Richy Ahmed is strapped up to the decks. Big old school acid sounds resonate around the old printing site. Vocal house starts to lift the crowd, before dropping them back into a Berghain-esque vibe. As the light rolls into dark, Berlin number one Loco Dice graces the turntables, bringing a mix of hip hop and techno to the arena. Cardi B's "Bodak Yello" starts to play, leaving the crowd stunned, before they're thrown back into the techno drop that Loco Dice is so famous for. The expectations set by the guest DJs, only added to the overall intensity Jamie Jones had to bring.
It's 8pm and finally, the main man himself is about to step up to booth. Surrounded by all of his guest DJs and team (and having just stepped off a flight a mere hour before he got to the booth) the head honcho plays his first song. Immediately, phones are out, flashes are on, and all 12,000 eyes now face the king of DC-10, lingering on every sound he throws out of the enormous sound system. Two hours seems to fly by, without anyone comprehending how quick the time has really gone. As the hi-hats, claps and kicks fade out into the night, everyone is applauding the king for an unbelievable event that he has put on.
— Malik (@M4likH) November 27, 2017
On That Note
When Jamie Jones first started Paradise I'm sure he was quietly confident that it would be a success. Whether it was going to be a success on this sort of scale however, I am not sure he could have imagined this. Although I have no doubt in my mind that the man, his friends and fellow DJs believe in him and his vision, I know that somewhere in there, he is still amazed. After almost five seasons in Ibiza, multiple stages in Europe and around the world and more gigs than one person should be able to play in a whole lifetime, there appear to be no signs of Jamie Jones slowing down. Hungry for the Power? Most definitely.