FEATURE: Silver Ladies – 25 years of Kate and Jo

Gscene caught up with Wildblood and Queenie, Brighton’s most buxom DJing duo, who are celebrating 25 years B2B behind the decks with their Silver Service fundraising party for MindOut and Blueprint 22 on September 16 at Patterns.

What was your first DJ gig together? 
Kate Wildblood: Queenie started her DJ life as one of Stroppy & Butch with Meesh Mash at The Zanzibar in 1990, whilst mine was at Guildford School of Acting & Dance Student Union playing The Smiths in 1987. We first DJed together at The Candy Bar, wobbly decks and all.

How do you maintain a working and romantic relationship?
Queen Josephine: Occasionally I let Kate twiddle my knobs when we’re playing. It’s the little things that make the difference.

What club would you go back to and relive? 
QJ: Those very first Wild Fruits at The Paradox when we were courting. So many naughty but fabulous memories.
KW: My first closing terrace set for Pride Sunday Sundae at Audio in 2010. Love was in the air, it didn’t fade, we danced all night long and there were tears in my eyes. 

Do you assume the same position behind the decks like Ant & Dec do on the telly?
QJ: No we’ve always been a flexible partnership.
KW: Must be all that cod liver oil!

Have you ever had a power cut during a set? 
QJ: Yes. Once at Rebel at The Honey Bar. Everything stopped: music, lights, Paul’s smoke machine, everything. Although strangely enough the tills kept working. Funny that.
KW: And at Wild Fruit’s and Candy Bar’s Pride Party at The Dome in 2002. Too much heat from hot gay bodies and an overactive smoke machine apparently. I was nervously warming up for Princess Julia (a DJ heroine) and the moment she put her first record on after me, everything came to shuddering stop.
QJ: Of course Princess Julia being the Princess that she is took it all in her glorious stride, pausing only to comment “Kim Lucas needed to top up the meter”. 

Are your DJ ears over sensitive to dirty noise?
KW: My ears can cope with anything. Apart from Trance. Then they combust.
QJ: Whereas thanks to my tinnitus and hearing aid I can cope with any genre by turning my ear-trumpet down. Which comes in very handy if we happen to stumble across a soft rock panpipes gabba night.

Which songs are you most requested to play? 
QJ: Anything by Faithless. We’d have paid for an Ibizan villa if we’d a pound for every request.

Ever been propositioned in the DJ box?
QJ: Only by very merry gay men who’ve had too many sherries and seem to be come obsessed with our, erm, how do I put it, double Ds.

How has the scene changed over the past quarter of a century?
QJ: Blimey! Now I do feel old. 
KW: Old but blessed. The scene was very DIY when we started: loads of small independent wonders creating amazing nights based on their love of music, of their community. Then Wild Fruit brilliantly built on that passion (and the legendary Club Shame at The Zap) and changed everything with its big production values and fundraising principles. Sadly when licensing laws changed, bars become mini-clubs and it became harder to financially sustain big production events or find venues happy to take a risk on smaller parties. 
QJ: When we started, clubbing was very much divided on gender lines but then the mix began. Today, although there’s still a strong men’s scene and we wonder when a women’s house night will ever return (anyone?), LGBTQIA+ clubbers are welcome at almost any club night in Brighton not because of their sexuality but because of their love of a genre of music.  
KW: And it’s great to see that early DIY ethos returning with clubs like Traumfrau and that female DJs are now being taken seriously behind the decks thanks to pioneers like Dulcie Danger, DJ Hollie, Michelle Manetti and King K.  

Is music the food of love?
KW: No but it comes a close second to Queenie’s bangers (and mash).

What’s the perfect end-of-night track?
QJ: For me it’s the hands in the air perfection DSD anthem that is Frankie Knuckles remix of Whitney Houston’s Million Dollar Bill.
KW: And for me it’s always Lionel Richie’s All Night Long. Tambo liteh sette mo-jah! Yo! Jambo jambo! And all that.

Silver Service

♦ Buy a £5 raffle ticket to win the framed original of Queenie’s 25 Years artwork (above) at perfect distractions.com/25-years. All proceeds go to Mindout & Blueprint 22.

♦ Wildblood & Queenie’s Silver Service at Horse Meat Disco celebrates 25 years of DJing, loving and clubbing on Saturday September 16, 11pm-4am at Patterns, Brighton. Pre-club drinks at The Tempest Inn from 6pm. Fundraising for MindOut and Blueprint 22.

♦ For more info, to donate or buy a raffle ticket, click here:

 

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