Yesterday I sent off the completed artwork for the latest project to have consumed my life for the last two months, a further book surrounding the Vocal Booth Weekender.
In 2018 I completed my first two additional books. One was a paperback, documenting the rise and rise of the Vocal Booth since starting in 1999. The other book was a hardback photobook to accompany the paperback, which featured mainly photos of the event in Spain throughout the first Ten Years of VBW.
Who are the Weekend Warriors?
The book features over 100 of the resident and regular DJs who have played at VBW down the years, from lads & ladies who have played just the once through to residents who have never missed an event. These are the backbone of what VBW is about. A selection of our favourite headliners are also featured.
How is the book laid out?
The book has three main ‘chapters’:
- The Warm Up
- The Headliners
- The After Party
I begin with a few words from myself (really, just a few) on how and why I was inspired to compile the book. A brief outline of VBW is then followed by some facts and figures, that’s ‘The Warm Up’. I then launch straight into the Rogues Gallery aka ‘The Headliners’. Each DJ has their own double page spread with a few facts about themselves and their general outlook on life. ‘The After Party’ is a few extra words from myself and a closing piece of writing from one of my heroes, words that moved me to tears. As I put this blog together I kind have wish I’d have used it to end the book, however I really didn’t want there to be too much focus on myself and so am glad I didn’t.
What’s the point of the books?
I’m sick of seeing people being applauded when they’re dead. I’m sick of reading stories of clubs and eras that are incomplete or factually incorrect. I wanted MY story to be told MY way. As morbid as it may sound (and I explain this in depth in the book), I wanted to leave something behind after I’m dead that I knew was an accurate look into one of the most important things to happen to me in the last twenty years. I am now satisfied that this goal has been achieved. Even though the first two books are complete and published, relatively few were actually sold to anyone outside of VBW… but they’ll always be there! You can actually read the paperback book FOR FREE via PDF online or download it to your devices.
Writing this book
It’s more of a compilation than a composition. Whilst having a couple of opening paragraphs from myself, it’s purely about the DJs and it’s THEIR time to shine. To make the book as ‘easy’ to put together as possible I created a questionnaire and embedded it on the VBW website. I then went about every way possible to get the DJs’ attentions. Newsletters, direct emails, FB posts and tags, Facebook polite messages. Facebook rude messages and Whatsapp messages. Over 8 weeks I took the answers as they drip fed to my inbox and designed each individual page for each DJ. It was a hard task getting one or two of the guys to complete their answers or send in suitable photos, however I already had most of the photos as I have been graced with a priceless gallery of images down the years from our fantastically talented team of photographers and the end product should be breathtaking for everyone involved.
As I state in my closing words in the book, I am super proud of all of the DJs featured, as I am about any DJ that has ever played at VBW. Many of the DJs in the book have never played a club of notoriety and I don’t think it’s unfair of me to say they probably never will but here they get the superstar status they deserve, side by side for all of history with some of the world’s biggest names on our scene.
One or two regular DJs are conspicuous by their absence. Some never even had the decency to reply to several of my messages. I almost ‘outed’ them in the book. I’m glad I never. I’m sure there’s a valid reason they couldn’t find 2 minutes to be included in this book and I’m also sure I’ll get over my disappointment, eventually 🙂
Who will the book appeal to?
Anyone featured in the book simply HAS to own it and I’d like to think that anyone who has ever been to a VBW would also love to sit and finger through its pages. It’s a monster, A4 portrait book (tall rather than wide) and has a mammoth 336 pages of content. It’ll weigh close to 3kg when it arrives and will be a very interesting read.
I plan to make a video, ‘advertising’ the book when I have it in my sweaty hands. Whilst it’s not the best sales pitch in the world, I’m not sure if it would be of much interest to anyone who has never been to a VBW before, not until all of us featured in the book start dying anyway… but isn’t that always the fucking case!?!