Guilty Pleasures

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Guilty Pleasures

Indulge in your guilty musical pleasures at this full-fat, fun pop party, with everything from ABBA to Beyoncé

As a part of March Into Merivale, Ivy in partnership with Time Out will be hosting a night all about celebrating musical guilty pleasures. It's a high quality but ultimately cheesy party of pop, disco, dance tracks, R'n'B and soft rock, where you can hear anything from Hanson to Haim to Soft Cell to Whitney to Beyoncé, accompanied by dancers, live acts cabaret performers, balloons and a lot of glitter.

The party – which was created by Brit disc jockey and radio host Sean Rowley – will be raging on every Friday night from February 19 through to March 18. We chatted to him to see what we can expect when he brings his Guilty Pleasures night down under.

Sean, what are five of your favourite 'guilty pleasure' tracks?
'Boom! Shake The Room' DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
'You Get What You Give' New Radicals
'Freedom!' George Michael
'Roar' Katie Perry
'Never Forget' Take That

Why is it OK to indulge?
GP fully endorses indulgent behaviour on every level... We have a resident priest who takes confessions in his confessional booth, and he tends to hear outrageous stories of indulgence. Having said that, indulgences should be a balance to sensible living, one can have too much of a good thing. I tend to listen to really obscure music from the '50s and '60s in order to stay sane and not overload on Britney. If something is overindulged on an everyday level it ceases to become a guilty pleasure and let’s face it, man cannot live by cream cake alone (you need a bit of spinach). So GP is your ‘safe’ place to indulge in all facets of life from music, to booze, to food and beyond.

For someone that's never been to a Guilty Pleasure party how would you explain it?
All our performers are usually chosen because they are outrageous people and they interact with the crowd getting them to play up on stage. Interaction is a massive part of what we do, the crowd becomes part of the night. Our mission is to break down the boundaries between the audience and the show; our aim is to immerse our attendees into the show experience.

How did you come up with the concept?
It was born out of my weekly radio show on BBC London. I played a song which I declared as my GP (because it was a bit naff) and the phone lines lit up with listeners declaring they loved it too. From there it became a regular feature on the show with people requesting their own GPs and soon after a compilation CD, which then led to a club night, it just grew very quickly. Pretty soon we were hosting massive monthly events in KOKO in Camden, London. More compilations followed and then we were throwing legendary parties around the UK. We've even DJ'd for George Michael at Wembley Stadium and Take That at the O2 on New Year’s Eve. And had our own Saturday night TV show.

What sets it apart from other retro/throwback parties?
I’ve never thought of GP as a nostalgic night, although we do play music from back in the day, we also bring a lot of contemporary pop into the mix. Because we are now into our 12th year, musically we’ve moved through the decades. When we started we drew heavily on the '80s, now the core of music comes from '90s, '00s and current chart tracks. Taking you from Buggles to Beyoncé, Wild Cherry to Katy Perry, Hanson to Haim, Daft Punk to Depeche Mode. The crowd is such a mixed bag of nationalities, race, sexuality and ages that the music is really about connecting with them all and giving them the time of their life. I’m always very flattered when people come up to me and tell me they’ve had the best night out ever at a Guilty Pleasures party.

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