Mark Barrott’s Only In Ibiza Part 1 – Hostel La Torre


When we were working on the Jose Padilla album two years ago, Henning (Telephones) came over for a week to work with Jose at his house. On the last day, Henning asked Jose the best place on the island to see a sunset and he told us to head out to Cap Negret, to Hostel La Torre. Off we went and the sunset was truly stunning.

Fast forward to last year and I get a call telling me that Hostel La Torre want to implement a new music policy and do I want to become one of the residents. Now, I’m not the world’s most natural DJ, I prefer sitting in the studio to standing up for four hours straight in staggering summer heat, but remembering the ‘vista spectacular’ I am interested. So I ask, ‘Can I play what I want, or am I going to have some numpty chirping in my ear all night long tell me what to play?’ (Bearing in mind that that seems to be the norm these days in most Ibiza venues). 

See I’d had this idea for a while now, to be able to play what I’d call proper Balearic music like Jose used to back in the old days, before New Labour and health and safety, before the world got hermetically sealed and made safe by those that seek to control us! I want to play Indian classic music next to Tangerine Dream, 80’s Bside pop next to beatless techno etc etc – I’m sure you get the idea, stuff you can only really get away with in Ibiza.

After a few weeks I’m well into the swing of things (including my DJ fork…well OK, here goes – I’m a vegan and I take my food pretty seriously and a/ don’t want to eat in the middle of a DJ set and b/ I only want to eat what I know the provenance of, so every Thursday, en route to La Torre, I stop at Wild Beets in Santa Gertrudis and pick up my dinner, which I then eat on the way to DJ with…my DJ Fork, that then gets cleaned and put back into the car for next week).

Ah, I digress….so, after a few Thursdays, it’s easy to forget when you’re looking out to sea that there’s also a small lounge directly above the DJ area where people also sit and watch the sunset. Anyway, I get to the money shot (i.e. the sun just starts kissing the sea) and everything is perfect – nature sounds playing on one CDJ, check, Japanese poem to motivate the masses playing on another, check, ‘Deep Water’ from ‘Sketches from an Island’ playing on the third, check. It’s all perfect, everything peaking as the sun disappears and a new phase of the day begins. One of those special moments when everything just works as it should.

Post sunset, 2-3 tracks later, a guy comes down from upstairs and starts talking to me – at first I can’t hear him cos I’ve got the monitor turned up and eventually I hear him say ‘Paul says that was really great’ – I look at him quizzically and say….’Paul Who?'  ‘Oh’, he says, ‘Paul Oakenfold, he’s upstairs listening to you DJ the sunset’. 

And then, as if cue, down walks Mr Oakenfold in too tight leather trousers and a shiny face, thumbs aloft in a strong cockney accent saying ‘well done mate, that was brilliant’, before he heads into the night and I load ‘99 Luftballons’ (the German version of course) onto one of the CDJ’s (hipsters everywhere frown and scratch their beards, whilst those of us with a modicum of self awareness wonder why anyone would choose ‘cool’ over joy, laughter and German Yacht Rock?)

Only in Ibiza…

PS I’m writing this with a shitty summer cold on the day of the 2nd La Torre of the season.  I’m speaking with my dad in Sheffield on the phone bemoaning my health and sore throat and his comment….’Will you still be able to talk & work the mic?’  = classic!

Mark Barrott will release his forthcoming album on International Feel on the 1st of July. Buy HERE

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