I Heart Berlin

My last-minute trip to Berlin exceeded my expectations. Everyone I know that’s visited, said I would have an amazing time. But I believe you never really know what a place is like until you’ve immersed yourself in it. So I was taken aback at how right they were.
Berlin Sights
Top 3 things I did
1: I went out, of course (I didn’t do the whole techno/house ‘thing‘ though). It’s my kind of place because everyone goes out late. It’s also very relaxed and I didn’t feel any kind of danger travelling through the city on my own at night. For the moment I wasn’t alone, I was very lucky to have a guide in my old flatmate who now lives in Berlin. It was mainly down to her that I had so much fun. We watched live comedy and drank tea cocktails at t Berlin in Kreuzberg, sat with a black and white straw model at Sameheads in Neukolin and I went on a solo mission one evening, where I danced to Grandmaster Flash and Maceo from De La Soul at Cassiopeia in Friedrichshain. My stay was made complete by “singing” along to Whitney Houston’s ‘I Have Nothing’ with the most amazing gay guys at Privatleben in Prenzlauer Berg. I would recommend them all.
Berlin Fun2: East Side Gallery (Berlin Wall). A great living piece of history that gives people the opportunity to actively learn and consider. I have many emotions about it. For me, it raises questions about what life was like on either side and what it means for the city now.
East Side Gallery3: Friedrichshain district. Just walking through this part of East Berlin is very cool. The grafitti, market stalls, cafes and shops are super interesting. It’s a shame I didn’t get to experience more of it in the day time. I definitely will be visiting here when I come back.
Walking Around

The 3 main things I took away from the trip are:

1: It’s famous history isn’t hidden away and the way Berlin and its people have reacted to it in a positive manner reflects a progressive city which is accepting of lots of different cultures.

2: The people I met were lovely. Straightforward, kind and friendly.

3: I didn’t ever feel like I was anywhere else. Berlin has a very strong identity.

Berlin really did steal my heart. I could go on about it even more but essentially Berlin is an experience to make your own. A must see city and definitely one I have to visit again.


Catch up

I’ve been slacking with posts recently. So in order to bring you back up to speed, here’s a photographic diary of Gone Out’s August and September so far.

11.08: Manchester Carnival, Alexandra Park, Moss Side

Partying to deep and soulful house at the Community tent.

12.08: Olympics Closing Ceremony, my flat

My housemate’s friend made us some In The Ghetto cocktails while we watched the Spice Girls. I remember Amaretto and Cava being part of the drink, but that’s it. Oh, and the lovely way he pronounced ‘ghetto’ in his Irish accent.

18.09: Vinyl of Fertile Ground’s ‘Seasons Change’, my friend’s flat

A friend introduced me to this when I visited her for a catch up. A fantastic set of soulful songs with a timeless feel. Pick it up here.

27.08: Leeds Carnival, Potternewton Park

Get me some chips and ting!

A beautiful evening watching the artists on the main stage.

27.08: Louie Vega, Hard Times 19th Anniversary, The Warehouse, Leeds

It was an interesting evening. Vega played a crowd-pleasing set of soulful, deep house and disco. Plus, erm, hard house.

2.09: Somewhere in the middle of the UK

On the train back from London. Not exactly a weekend to remember so it was nice to see such a beautiful sunset on the way back to Manchester.

08.09: A family friend’s wedding, Netherwood Hotel, Grange Over Sands

The beautiful 1800s country house where the wedding was held and I was lucky enough to stay there.

Some vintage finds on an early morning walk into the village of Grange – a linen and 55 per cent silk Jaeger short-sleeved jacket and a unused navy clasp bag with a lovely ornate strap for a total of £7.

The Weekend

Be My Guest at Soup Kitchen

Friday 20th July: Be My Guest with Irfan Rainy at Soup Kitchen, Spear Street, Manchester

Be My Guest at Soup Kitchen

Saturday 21st July: Boogizm vs Development at Q Cavern, Newton Street, Manchester

Sunday 23rd July: People’s History Museum, Left Bank, Spinningfields, Manchester

People's History Museum


New York presenter, host, voice over artist and all-rounder @TastyKeish joined me for the final leg of her month-long trip of Europe.


A hip-hop party in Stockholm

I love this photo. Taken by Melika, it’s from the Yes party at Mosebacke in Stockholm last weekend. Kool DJ Red Alert (above) was joined by The Jungle Brothers’ DJ Sammy B for the event, which I attended as part of my trip to the city.

In case you don’t know, Red Alert managed The Jungle Brothers, A Tribe Called Quest and Monie Love among others back in the 1980s, was a DJ for Hot 97 and still plays on 98.7 Kiss-FM N.Y.C alongside Andre Harrell, Ed Lover and Rev. Al Sharpton. Both the 55-year old and Sammy B rocked the party with their cutting and mixing – and I can testify after only moving away from the dance floor at 3am.

A big thank you to DJ Mad Mats from the city, who gave my friends and I the chance to enjoy the evening.

Check out the Yes website for more photos of the night and stay updated with Gone Out for future posts about my Stockholm trip.


Review: SBTRKT @ HMV Ritz, Manchester 23/02/12

I don’t know about you, but this curtain reminds me of an ink blot test used by psychologists.  I see a wizard carrying two balls. Does this say something about me? It doesn’t really matter… I hope.

What does matter is how SBTRKT’s show was excellent and the energetic crowd made the night. I was dancing on the balcony like a loon but downstairs was where the real party was. They loved Pharoahs and pretty much adored Wildfire, which featured a recording of rapper Drake over this live version. I was amazed at the multi-tasking going on; one minute the producer was playing the drums, then altering the pitch and conducting Sampha the next. It all sounded amazing and nowhere near as frantic as it looked.

It was extremely entertaining, inventive and attention grabbing, despite lasting just over an hour. The sensible side of me says that the timing must have been due to the producer playing one album’s worth of material but I wouldn’t be surprised that heat underneath the signature tribal masks both SBTRKT and long-term collaborator Sampha wore, got too much for them.  Sampha’s voice is just as beautiful in real life too.

Support came from Disclosure and the second half of their set really impressed me. Check out their tracks including my favourite, the remix of Jessie Ware’s ‘Running’, on Disclosure’s Soundcloud.


March For The Alternative, 2nd October 2011

March For The Alternative - October 2nd, 2011



    February was a busy one for me. I went out loads but I’ve not had time to blog about it because I’ve had boring time-consuming things, like moving house, to do. So here are a few images, taken both on my snazzy camera and Blackberry (apologies for the quality of these pictures), documenting what I’ve been up to.

    I was drunkenly convinced this picture I took of our table at Piccolinos Italian restaurant on John Dalton Street should go in a brochure. Nice place.

    This is what I had for dessert:

    A chocolate bread and butter pudding made with panettone. Quite tasty but by the time I got halfway through, it was sickly.

    After our meal, celebrating my friend Siobhan’s birthday, we went to Blackdog Ballroom on the corner of Church and Tib Street for drinks and dancing. This picture depicts one of one of my second-most favourite thing about this bar. Scenesters drinking beer from pint glasses, similar to ones that can be found in my parents’ 1970s pine cabinet and used by my moustached uncles, is just really funny. Oh, in case you were wondering what my favourite thing about Blackdog Ballroom is, it’s that they play tracks like this:

    I’m also lucky to say I got to see Grammy-nominated singer/time traveller Janelle Monae at the Academy on the 28th. She’s that good, she got people on their hands and knees in the encore. If you don’t believe me, Siobhan got a pic… check out the sneak who just crouched a bit. Boo to you sneaky croucher guy (Unless you have knee problems, then I’m really sorry).

    That was just one of notable events that happened. Monae’s show is definitely one of the best I’ve seen in a long time. Her songs are given a fantastic live treatment; her band, dancers, black and white dress code, dance moves, voice and facial expressions showed me that I was witnessing the real deal. An experience I highly recommend to everyone.

    Support came from CockNBullKid and she’s pretty amazing too. Check out her latest single ‘Hold On To Your Insecurities’.

    I then went out last night:

    This was taken at the second Tempo soulful and deep house party at Mint Lounge on Oldham Street last night. After last month’s succesful launch with DJ Neil Pierce (Soul Heaven/Fanatix), Dave Law and DeanJay continued where they left off and got the Mint Lounge jumping once again the help of All Back To Ours’ Gaz James and Lanny from Not For Squares.

    An honourable mention goes to Murkage. They supported Lethal Bizzle at Soundcontrol last night and I have it on good authority that they smashed it. Listen to their latest track (which was released in February – see the tenuous February link there?) here:


Last night…

On Saturday 20th November, roots house producer, DJ and promoter Irfan Rainy gathered Manchester’s dancers, performers and music lovers together in the depths of the Northern Quarter for his Loft Party, celebrating 20 years of his involvement in the city’s scene. 

Alongside the Community organiser’s educated soundtrack of salsa, jazz, broken beat, rare groove, disco and deep house, ravers enjoyed performances from contemporary New York dance group Mixed Movement and various impromptu creative collaborations. Among those included a very random – but very cool – moment of when beat boxer Jason Singh did his thing over a digereedoo played by hip-hop artist Baba Israel.

Here some images of what was an amazing night.   

Next up is Community with Sean McCabe at Contact Theatre on Saturday 4 December. See you there!


Capturing The Rave

The collection below contains some of my favourite images that I’ve taken at various parties in the last year or so.

I got a good reaction from my tutor after submitting them as part of my recent photography course, and my class has been asked if we would like to sell our work.  Do you think my photos are worth it? Could you see them in a bar or club? Or even in your living room or above your decks? Email me at

Stiletto In The Crowd, Ape, Manchester Apollo, June 2009


Apple Martini, The Comedy Club, Shoreditch, London, March 2010


A Roller Skating Jam Named Red Bull Music Academy, Renaissance Rooms, Vauxhall, London, March 2010

The Martinez Brothers, Ministry of Sound Strictly Rhythm boat party, River Thames, London, June 2009

Development @ Sound Control, Manchester, March 2010