One of New Zealand's hottest exports hits Bahrain this month
Time Out Bahrain staff
Club Luxury is coming to Bahrain – what is it and what’s your involvement? Club Luxury is the southern hemisphere’s answer to Hed Kandi. It’s a record label, touring club brand, and an outlet to showcase some of the finest house producers and DJs on the globe. You could say I’m the head honcho of Luxury – label boss, DJ, producer, designer and party animal.
How did something like this start in New Zealand? Club Luxury started out as my event brand, featuring myself as the main resident. It was purely an avenue to showcase my forthcoming music releases, and over the last three years has built up a global following. The music scene in New Zealand is very good – we have a huge house scene there, but not too many producers just yet. So it’s kind of a privilege as a Kiwi, being able to tour the world, going to beautiful countries and playing my own productions.
How did you get started in DJ’ing? And why house music? I used to play the drums in a band for over five years. We never really got anywhere, but after the band finished I was craving being in the music world again. I had a friend at the time who was involved with some big parties, and we formed a duo for a few gigs. After that I found my feet and started working my way up the music ladder. I started up New Zealand’s first ever electronic music gig guide called Infusion, which I later licensed to Dubai, and that’s what really got me started. I also started off playing house in ’98, but throughout the years have played a variety of music.
Where have you taken Club Luxury recently? I perform in Dubai, and in Cyprus I host a regular Friday night Club Luxury summer residency at The Castle Club – it’s the biggest club on the island, with 4,000 capacity. I’m usually back home for about four to five months from December. I headline the best New Year’s event in New Zealand called Highlife, with around 9,000 people. But I mix touring with producing. I have a great production partner in Cyprus, Steve Richards, and we put out tracks under Elektrik Disko – I usually spend a few days a week writing new music or doing remixes for artists, either with Steve or by myself.
Best ever gig? I think when Elektrik Disko played at Koko Club in London, it was for a Funkinyou party, and the club was absolutely packed. The promoter was so happy, he invited us back to the stage for the closing set.
Have you ever played in Bahrain before? This is the first ever Club Luxury in Bahrain, and hopefully one of many more to come. I know Bahrain for its involvement with international motorsports, such as F1 and V8 Supercars. My dad is involved with motorsport back in New Zealand, so I’d love to check out the circuit while I’m there.
What do you have planned for your night at Cocoon? I don’t really plan my nights out too much, but if you like Hed Kandi and Ministry of Sound, and combine that with my own special music edits, you’ll definitely be going home satisfied. I always have an arsenal of the latest tunes and my own edits, remixes and party antics. Loads of vocals for the ladies and some slamming fresh beats for the guys. It’s a killer combination!
And your debut single, ‘Wrong’, is due out around the same time – tell us about that. It’s my second release on Club Luxury Records, and it features the amazing vocals of Merenia Gillies, a New Zealand-born singer/song writer. I basically recovered a classic Everything But The Girl track, and Merenia delivers a perfect performance on this tune. I’m already working on the follow-up. The next release samples one of our famous old bands called Th’Dudes – they are kind of like the New Zealand Rolling Stones, and we have got an official blessing from the band to release that on my label. I have Elektrik Disko and Katherine Ellis’s first single to hit after that, plus I have collaborated with Solitaire to re-release the classic Candi Staton ‘You Got The Love’ tune, with all new mixes that are destined to be club anthems for the future.
Have you remixed for any big names recently? I did a remix for the Freemasons, for their last single ‘If’, at the start of this year. That really helped my production profile around the globe, and since then I have remixed for the Soul Avengerz, Solitaire, Jason Herd, Ben Macklin and Steve Edwards. I’ve also DJ’d alongside some pretty big names, such as Tiësto, Armin Van Buuren, Boy George, Judge Jules, Armand Van Helden, Axwell, Bob Sinclair, Jon Fitz, Abigail Bailey, Soul Central, Moto Blanco and Stonebridge – I’ve even gone on tour with Groove Armada as their support DJ.
Which do you prefer – remixing, producing or making your own music? I like remixing other people’s music, but at the same time if you can come up with an original hit, then that is the most satisfying – when you drop it and it gets a huge response, then that really makes you feel good. Jolyon Petch brings his Club Luxury night to Cocoon Lounge, Best Western Hotel, Juffair (17 827 600) on Thursday, July 16 from 9pm. BD7 entry, ladies free.