A journey back in time

cubansApparently some people count sheep to help them get to sleep (really?) but the other night found me counting the number of times I’ve seen The Cuban Brothers before dozing off.

I could add up H&M designer collaborations I’d attended I suppose, but that would probably only go to five or six.  Los Hermanos Cubanos however are a different matter.

“You must have seen them at least 20 times!” Van exclaimed over a pre-birthday dinner in South London.  “No way!” I replied.  “The first time was a Sunday Best party at S’Estanyol beach in Ibiza in 2004. Since then maybe once a year?”  “Rubbish! I don’t believe you” she said.


A smokily scented night in Brixton, November 2014: Less threatening coming out of the tube, someone even brushed past me and said: ‘Sorry.’ More Starbucks than Iceland – although I was pleased to see Iceland still had prime position on the high street next to ‘King of Trainers’. “Let’s go to the Village” Foxy said.  “It’s all chi chi – kind of one up from street food.”

Three souped up jalopies drove slowly by – the heavy booming of the bass so loud that the pavement vibrated.  “That hasn’t changed – thank God” said Foxy.


The old market on Coldharbour lane now houses a myriad of cutesy restaurants, bars, hairdressers, vintage shops – all brimming over with gentrified Brixtonians.

We had a cocktail whilst inadvertently crashing someone’s 30th birthday party.

P1030933A lengthy queue to the venue for our evening’s entertainment had us surrounded by the usual plethora of beards and a lady regaling her companions with stories of the magnificence of Dorset. “Looks like a late one Foxy.”  “Yeah, I reckon they won’t be on until 11.30pm tops.”  “Nah, 11pm I’d say” I replied.


Several beer bucket challenges later we stood before the stage.  It was 12.30pm. Kenny ‘the bastard’ was doing his stuff as Archerio and Miguel warmed up at the side of the stage.”  Our new Japanese friends next to us were practically asleep.  Eager twenty-somethings craned their necks to see more of Domenico.  Miss Dorset pushed and shoved with elbows that denoted many a triumphant sale bargain.


I turned over in bed, closed my eyes and searched through the venues in my mind.  The ICA, Carphone Warehouse Ball at Alexandra Palace, Bestival 2005 (or was it earlier?), Koko in Camden… I got to 15. I tried to find the 16th, I knew there was one, but I was sleepy. In the favoured expression of Miguel Mantovani It was time to just ‘allow it.’


*1st two photos from ‘Ibiza Spotlight’


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