CHAPTER TWENTY FIVE – GOD IS A DJ

The Intern by Dillon Khan

GOD IS A DJ

Mid August saw me leave London and head out to what had become the unofficial holiday camp for the company: Ibiza, a.k.a. the debauched ‘Gomorrah of the Mediterranean’. Each department at The Beat actually started the year with a line in their budget for the party island. Everyone had a well-rehearsed ‘business reason’ for going out there at least once during summer. The only person I could think of who got left out was poor Noah in the post room.

Stuey had set up shop in a villa for the summer season, filming news bulletins and specials from a different club each week. Max and I had flown in to shoot an interview with Kylie Minogue and a Top Ten countdown, with Sam and Cara as extra hands.

Our easyjet flight was virtually a party plane, filled with excitable kids, us included. We landed on Saturday morning and filmed Kylie, who was promoting her new single ‘Spinning Around’. By midday we were enjoying downtime at a secluded playa catching some mid-August sun. With my top off I noticed that even though I wasn’t hitting the gym, carrying filming equipment through the busy streets of W11 was making my arms Hulk-like.

Come the evening, all roads led to the best club on the island, Pacha, with rumours that George Clooney had sailed in from St Tropez to attend. Stuey had promised us a VIP experience – without having to lug a camera and mic cube to get us in. From his years of filming he knew almost every- one, from club owners and managers to the DJs and dance acts. But it also helped a little when ‘someone’ started a rumour that his cousin owned Ministry of Sound.

‘So why does The Beat go goo-goo-ga-ga for Ibiza?’ I asked Stuey as he drove us on the C-733 road towards Ibiza Town.

‘Why not any other island in Europe? Kos, Crete, Tenerife?’ added Cara.

‘The footballer-infested Ayia Napa?’ added Sam.

None of us had been to Ibiza before and although we’d heard the hype, we were yet to see it for ourselves.

‘Homies, what Paris is to romance, Ibiza is to partying,’ replied Stuey. ‘Everyone who’s anyone comes here for the annual pilgrimage. For artists, if their song breaks on this tiny island, it will break all over Europe.’

Fiddling with the stereo in the front, Max asked, ‘Who have you caught up with from the UK party pack?’

‘Noel Gallagher’s villa’s in the south and Jade Jagger’s hidden retreat is in the north.’ Stuey reached into the glove compartment and pulled out a personal invite from her on a purple card that simply read: ‘Party, my place, Ibiza, join the commune.’

Just a few days before I’d left, I’d emailed Pritz about the trip, hoping to make him a bit jealous. Instead he outflanked me, booking a flight and hotel room in between a trade of Apple shares, and we’d arranged to meet inside the club. Max had met Pritz several times now and thought he was obnoxious, arrogant and rude. Just his kind of guy.

Arriving at Pacha, we were escorted straight to the owner’s table where the drinks continued. Max and Stuey weren’t dancing much but in a huddle most of the time with the club owner and then the mega rich he introduced them to. Their combined monthly wages couldn’t have paid for a table with all those drinks. But dressed in linen like Crockett and Tubbs from Miami Vice, with cigars in their mouths, they played the part.

I searched the club for Pritz – among all the good-looking people I guessed he’d stick out like a sore thumb. The women were sexy as hell. During winter these same girls would be a six out of ten at best. But in Ibiza they added two points to their overall total with what was known as the ‘two-point tan’.

I finally found Pritz on the dance floor in one of the smaller rooms, vertically dry-humping a confused-looking Italian girl to DJ Luck and MC Neat’s ‘With a Little Bit of Luck’. I grabbed him and we went back to the main room where a familiar face had joined the VIP table. It was Alison’s party promoter friend, Benny from Brussels. He was puffing a cigar with Stuey and Max, surrounded by an entourage of tall leggy Brazilian girls.

This was the first time in ages that I’d felt happy and relaxed in a club. I was a normal punter again. I had begun to associate clubs with work and holding a bloody camera. Looking for places to shoot links, filming vox-pops and finding sexy people for dance montages. Being here was like remembering how to ride a bike – I could listen to the music and just enjoy it, rather than thinking about what album it was from or who did the remix.

All my anxieties, from work to relationships, disappeared. It was nice to just follow the pied piper as he controlled the endorphins in my body. It was bliss hearing a heavy bassline, making a gun using my thumb and first two fingers and firing off a shot when the beat dropped. But even better was the sound of the next track being mixed in subtly and teasingly by Morillo, raising the urge to shout ‘tuuuuuune’ in anticipation. I mentally snapped the Kodak moment to look back on and help me remember this feeling. Mr Time was moving too fast and before I knew it, my internship would be over.

I stood up to dance as the best sound system on the island sent colours streaming in different directions before me like an indoor fireworks display. I closed my eyes and tilted my head back to suck them into my nose, smelling them. Hands aloft in the air, the colours bristled past my fingertips like falling snow. As the euphoria built in the pit of my stomach, I gave it an escape route through my open mouth as I screamed. I stuck my tongue out to grab a taste. So this is Ibiza, I thought.

We didn’t leave the VIP section until they threw us out at five a.m. The street outside was packed with people standing around, looking for the next party. Benny invited us back to the villa he was staying at, with his harem of hot women and rich friends, before we’d continue on to the early morning rave at a club called Space.

‘Right, so we’ll see you guys later at our villa,’ said Max, jumping into the Jeep with Stuey and some hot-looking French twins they’d chatted up.

‘You’re not coming with us to Benny’s place?’ I asked, wondering why the team was splitting.

He looked at the girls and then back to me. ‘Silly question, Jay,’ he said. ‘Here’s some money for a cab. You guys have fun and don’t come back too early!’

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