Thursday, 24 May 2012

Less Than A Month To The Free House Project Launch

Well it’s less than a month to my party.  My first ever public party with DJs in a bar.

I’ve long wanted to do one, ever since I got back from my first trip to Ibiza back in 1998.  I’ll talk more about my inspiration and desire to throw a party in another blog post.

I want to talk about what goes through the mind of a first-time promoter (and very likely goes through the minds of most promoters, full stop).

Firstly there was the actual date.  The initial one clashed with another good party, oh and Henley Regatta, so a second date was agreed on, which thankfully gave me a bit more time to work on it.  But now I find out that it clashes with Yeovilton Air Day.  However I should be ok as that is £23 to get in and my party is free.  Free!  Perhaps slightly more importantly is that if England finish runner-up in their group in Euro 2012, then they will be playing that night.  But football is shit and nobody likes it any more.  I’m sure I can watch it on my phone.  Whilst DJing.  Might have to keep quiet about this football malarkey.

Then most importantly is deciding on DJs.  Not only deciding but persuading them to play for free, or maybe for a can of Red Stripe and a hug.  I did have the demonic thought of “would they bring a crowd” but I got that out of my head quickly and am trying my hardest to find DJs that most closely play the styles of music I love and want at my party.  And very importantly play it with a style that I want and have a too often over-looked presence behind the decks.

Thankfully I have two fantastic, perfect DJs booked.  Both different, and different to myself too.  I still would like one more.  It isn’t easy.  The other thing is, people send me links to their sets and they seem really nice friendly people – then I listen to it, love the first couple of tracks and then David Guetta comes on.  I like to think I am a nice person, I don’t like saying no to people but you have to in this game.  I don't think I am going to find a 4th DJ for this party.  I might be playing for 4 hours unless the others can extend.

Most painful has been designing a sodding flyer.  I have never done any design work.  Ever.  I am clueless.  I have painted a logo, I thought it looked great at the time but I was spannered.  I doubted it but kind of decided I had to live with it due to time and financial constraints, but I’ve had two compliments and not many people have seen it so it is a keeper.

And then I need to get some flyers printed.  Who?  Where?  How much?  I don't have the money but I want a flyer for my first party so when I am doing parties with Cocoon, I can remember my roots.

How about – every promoter’s true nightmare – what if nobody turns up?  I don’t see why that would be the case as I’m offering a cracking good party but if the first one falls flat then I’m unlikely to get a second or third date from the fantastic Mr Hooper.  And if I don’t get a regular free party going, then I don’t see how I would ever be able to do a sister party charging people to get in but with guest DJs (so many I would love to book and I think the people of Reading would be rather impressed)…that is the dream though, for after the summer.

And then I get drunk and worry about it becoming so popular that 500 people turn up – because 500 people cannot fit in that bar!  And I don’t think it would take too long for the residents in the flats nearby to complain.

All kinds of other things could go wrong too – how about the first severe thunderstorm in years?  Or my CDJs breaking?  Nuclear war?


I am really enjoying organising it though and I thoroughly intend on it being one of the best parties in Reading for a hell of a long time.  I’ve decided to go back to some basic marketing theory – The 3 P’s.

Price.  Product.  Promotion.


Amazing music from the hottest DJs.

James Winfield is the promoter.

I cannot wait.  See you on the dancefloor.  Or at least please press "attending" so it looks popular.