Things happen in Ibiza. Nice people pick you up from the side of the road at Es Caliu restaurant and take you to VIP at the hottest gig in town.
“Who is this guy?” I asked my hostess once in the car. “You know” she replied, “He sings that song: “I need to know now, need to know now, can you love me again?” “Oh, yes, I do know it!” “He’s phenomenal” she said.
We drove through the wilds of the Ibizan countryside towards the setting sun and the even wilder environs of San Antonio.
On arrival at Ibiza Rocks Hotel we were yellow wristbanded and ascended to the VIP area. Upstairs from the balcony, we took a view – literally. From our premium vantage point we could see the by now infamous swimming pool and a young buoyant crowd, eager to see their peer perform.
It was so happening, with the buzz of a singer about to appear on stage who I feel we’ll be hearing about for years to come, that I struggled to keep up.
The charisma of John Newman’s performance was something to behold. A strong voice, a unique look and a way with words: “I know you’re all here for the week you’ve saved up all year for – so let’s ‘ave it tonight!”
Hands were in the air and R – the hostess with the mostest turned to me excitedly: “This is it! This is the song!” Everyone sang along to an anthem less intangible than those of the 90’s – closer to the heart, and transmitted from a man who wears his on his sleeve – enhanced by a voice that’s still in my head today.
The after party took place at a small rustic hotel, deserving of a guided tour such is its history on this island. I stood in reception and took in the illustrious photographs adorning the walls.
Suddenly there was a commotion at the entrance. I heard the the Northern tones of a dominant force and immediately made my way through the fray to introduce myself.
“For goodness sake, how old are you with a voice like that?” “I’m 24” he replied. He smelled lovely, hair slicked back with a blonde streak, a gold necklace around his neck ..and I spotted some white socks. “Are they a tribute to Michael?” I asked. “No! Don’t look at the feet!” “But I love your look! It’s different. Where did you get that interesting pendant though?”
“Thank you” he said. “I try, I try. Oh…I designed the necklace myself.”
Of course he did. It goes without saying.