What went down at our Shoulder To Shoulder house party in Leeds - Features - Mixmag

What went down at our Shoulder To Shoulder house party in Leeds

Headlined by Jayda G and Ruby Savage, the Mixmag and Monkey Shoulder event was the house party to end all house parties (until we do it all again)

  • In association with Monkey Shoulder | Photos: Brendan Bucannan | Film photos: Twin Film
  • 31 August 2023

In a celebration of what the music scene should embrace, Mixmag and Monkey Shoulder have teamed up to launch the new campaign Shoulder To Shoulder, that encourages, honours and praises diversity and mutual support to uplift nightlife. Teaming up with the 100% malt whisky made for mixing, we've curated two next-level house parties with a difference. Major creative decisions were informed by canvassing the opinions of the people who make nightlife tick, with bookings focused on spotlighting rising talents and artists who invest energy into promoting good causes.

After listening to all your responses on what makes an epic house party, we brought this vision to life across not just one party, but two. Kicking things off in Leeds on August 17 and throwing the second a week later in London.

Set at Leeds’ beloved venue The Faversham, you’d struggle to recognise the space with each room completely transformed into a raver's haven. The bar stocked with endless Monkey Shoulder delights, from a coffee-flavoured slushie to Monkey-based mojitos, everyone was refreshed and enjoying their dream house party. This perfect party stretched beyond the music and vibrant cocktails with the impeccable decor. The bedroom offered slightly more chilled vibes, the glowing orange bed taking centre stage inviting guests to chill for a drink or take a classic selfie in the ensuite bathtub. There was also disposable film cameras left around the venue for partygoers to capture how much fun they were having for themselves — as you can see from our selections, it was a lot.

From there we enter every house party’s holy grail, the kitchen. Fitted with a full set of cabinets, kitchen island, sink, fridge and more, the incredible Michael Upson and DJ Subaru opened up. Keeping things local, the pair represented the uniting of queer dance party Love Muscle and the inclusive Leeds event PLEASUREMAXXX. Spinning vinyl, the pair had us in a trance with a plethora of grooves that rolled us through the night.

We were already having a wild house party, and the climactic moment sent the vibes soaring, as Jayda G and Ruby Savage played a huge Shoulder To Shoulder set. “The house party to end all house parties” had arrived. Starting things off with soulful sounds of ‘That's What Friends Are For’ by Madeline Bell, they soon took off with an ecstatic set. Jayda and Ruby couldn’t help but let the music take over as they joined the crowd in singing and moving along to a great range of classic disco. The immaculate vibes escalated more and more to the sounds of Soul II Soul’s ‘Back To Life’ and Jorja Smith’s ‘On My Mind’ closing the set. Luckily, the music didn’t end there and Michael Upson and DJ Subaru stepped back up to the decks to keep the celebrations flowing.

Another one of The Faversham's rooms was styled as a lounge with a custom-made booth which you’d be fooled into thinking was an antique office desk. Soundtracking the space were local residents of storied club night Cosmic Slop, playing an all-night-long set of jazzy disco. Cosmic Slop also helps to fund the MAP Charity, offering creative, alternative education for young people.

Through the series, we’ll also be supporting existing organisations - the Music Venue Trust, Night Time Industries Association and Free The Night - who work to support existing infrastructure in the UK and embolden those who work tirelessly to make nightlife a place of acceptance and inspiration, with charitable donations and calls for the community to join in.

Check out some more images from the first night of Mixmag and Monkey Shoulder's Shoulder To Shoulder house party with Cosmic Slop DJs, Michael Upson, DJ Subaru, Ruby Savage and Jayda G.

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