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Le Visiteur Interview with Guy Williams

Guy Williams talks about his fascinating career and Wild Wood

Guy Williams talks Wild Wood Disco, Flash at Pikes, Ibiza, Danny Tenaglia and career moves




An interview with the Insider

Guy Williams has been about the party scene for over 20 years. He’s been a DJ, promoter, a manager, you name he’s done it! From his early days playing at The Hacienda, to being Head of Promotions at Defected, Williams now lives upon the white isle, where he continues to put on glamourous events and parties, at the same with his carefully curated artist management roster.

‘Flash’ is his Ibiza event which he brings this year in June, to the Wild Wood Disco festival, where he takes over the Paradise Lost stage alongside a host of exciting talent. We took some time to sit down with Guy for a little chat.

Wild Wood Disco is back for summer 2024 from 21st – 23rd June and the Magic Happens at The Woodland Glade, Horseheath Racecourse, Linton, Cambridgeshire, CB21 4QP.

You can check out more on Wild Wood Disco and grab tickets HERE

Wild Wood Disco 2024
Thanks for talking to us Guy.

Where are you this moment and how are you spending you day?

Hi, it’s my pleasure. I’m currently at home in Ibiza working away preparing for the impending season which starts even earlier this year!

Where exactly are you based these days? Where did you grow up?

I’m based in Ibiza and have been for 6 years now, but I travel between the island and UK very frequently for both work and personal reasons.

I grew up in Manchester, well in Cheadle. Cheshire till I was 18 then city centre until I was 27. Being 18 in 1988 in Manchester was pretty exciting with the birth of Acid House.

What sort of music was played in your house as a kid do you remember?

My Parents were hippies in the 70’s and more into guitar/rock in the 80’s although there was definitely an 80’s synth vibe going on as well, mainly from me!

When did you first start getting into records? What made you get into it?

My Father worked for various record labels through the 80’s including, Arista and Virgin, so my vinyl collection started very early, from around aged 8. I would give him a list of records I wanted, and he would bring them home for me, early delights such as Blondie, The Police, ABBA etc.

What were some of the first records you bought?

Rather than the ones I got from my Dad, I started buying records more myself around 1986 when I started clubbing, so they would have been the early house records such at Steve Silk Hurleys Jack Your Body, New Order. Stuff like that.

Where did you buy them from?

I would buy my records from HMV, and the independent record stores in Manchester at the time like Eastern Bloc, Spin Inn and the Vinyl Exchange.

Where was your first gig? How did you get into it?

My first gig was at a gorgeous venue in Manchester called the Atheanaeum which my friend managed. I got paid £80 (not bad for 1993!) and started playing regularly in clubs and bars throughout Manchester that year.

How did you get your first gig at The Hacienda? Flesh right?

I had been going to every Flesh party from when it started in late 1991. I started DJing around the end of ‘92/start of ‘93, and by end of ’93, I was a regular guest at Flesh.

Where were some of your other gigs at that time?

I was a regular through ‘93-‘96 at Trash & Wonderland in Sheffield, Vague in Leeds, and then started to get guest spots at Ministry Of Sound in 1995.

Who were the other DJs coming up at the same time as you? Are you still mates with any of them now?

There was Tom Wainright, Buckly, Matt Ryan, Elliot Eastwick, Justin Robertson, loads, and yes I’m still mates with them. I see some of them more than others.

You moved to London in ’97. What made you up sticks initially?

Manchester was going through the doldrums mid 90’s with the gang problem effecting nightlife, and I was getting itchy feet for the bright lights of London. I knew that I needed to make that move if I was to further my career in dance music and Djing.

Did you know anyone in London when you landed or were you riding solo?

I knew quite a few people as I’d been visiting London quite a bit for both clubbing and gigs from ‘93-’97.

After your first job at Jive Records, you ended up at Defected. What was your role there and who was there at that time?

I was Club Promotions Manager at Defected which was a great role, pretty intense! They also started looking after me DJ wise, so from the year 2000, things went pretty hectic. At the time Janet Bell, Seamus Haji and of course Simon Dunmore were all there.

Danny Tenaglia invited you over to New York. How did that happen? What can you remember about the night?

I had loved Danny as an artist for years and then we both played the opening of Home in Leicester Square together on the Sunday for the new gay night. Me, Danny and his manager Kevin hit it right off and the following year they invited me over to play at Be Yourself, Danny’s legendary party at Vinyl NYC. I took a crew of 13 friends, it was amazing, nerve wracking and life affirming all at the same time!

I was warming up for him and he arrived after I’d been on about an hour. I think I was due to play 2 hours but he told me I was rocking it and asked if I’d like to play another hour, of course I said yes!

What is Danny like to work with?

He’s a genuinely lovely soul, as is Kevin, not only an amazing innovative producer and excellent DJ, an all-round lovely human.

You did a Radio 1 Essential. Off the back of the Danny gig. I guess it had a significant impact on your profile right?

Well it was a culmination of those early 2000’s when things really took off for me. I was resident at Fabric on Sundays (8 years), The Cross Fridays (8 years,) The End on Thursdays, and for Ministry Of sound.

The Essential Mix in 2003 kind of reflected all of that.

Nobu was one of your gigs right?

I was a resident DJ at Nobu London for many years, I then became program manager for Nobu Ibiza which I did for a further 2 years.

What is your relationship with the Ibiza past and present?

I’ve lived in Ibiza for 6 years but have been visiting the island for both Holidays and Gigs since 1994, this June will be my 24th year playing on the island

Programming is something you have done a lot of over the years now. Tell us about some of these gigs you have programmed?

I have programmed various venues and events over the years including, Nobu Ibiza, Soho House London, events for Bacardi, Heineken and of course my own ‘Flash’ events at Pikes Ibiza for 6 years now.

Check the Flash Pikes Ibiza 2024 Lineup

Is there an art to programming well do you think? What are the big no no’s?

You need to know the right artists that fit the right events and venues, if this goes wrong it can cause stress all round!

I guess this leads us nicely on to Wild Wood Disco festival. Is this your first time at the event?

It’s not my first time at Wildwood, I’ve played there as a solo gig and hosted a stage on the Sunday a few years ago. To be returning to host Paradise Lost on the Saturday is both a great honour and a real buzz!

What can you tell us about the event design, location, and crowd?

Wild Wood has a very special unique vibe, partly down to the gorgeous location of Woodlands and rolling fields, and partly down to Vicky Fenton and her team who put a huge amount of love and passion into the weekend. You can really feel and of course the friendly and diverse crowd that attend.

Paradise lost stage Small

You are taking over one of the stages I hear. Fill us in on what, where, who and when please.

Yes. So ‘Flash’ is my event from Pikes, Ibiza and we are taking over the Paradise Lost stage on the Saturday from 2pm-2am. This is actually my favourite stage area as its deep in the woodland with a great stage and sound system and holds around 600 people, which is a great size for an amazing atmosphere under the trees.

The lineup is a real family affair with Crazy P DJ’s, Justin Harris (Music For Freaks), Heidi Lawden, Shay Malt from Adonis, Sophie Joy, and Itchy Rich, plus myself, and it’s my birthday at midnight so will be the perfect birthday party!

How good are you at being in a field for a few days? Do you possess all suitable wardrobe and survival kit?

I have to admit I’m not a big fan of camping anymore, I tend to stay in Hotels or at least Campervans I my age I need some home comforts like a bed!

What is your top tip for festival survival Guy?

Top tip is pretty obvious, if you are there for 2-3 days, get at least 4/5 hours sleep a night, keep hydrated and don’t forget to eat!

What are the individual projects are you working on currently?

I’ve just completed the line ups for our Flash season 7 at Pikes Ibiza and announced it so that feels good. Ongoing, I have my DJ agency Paradise Productions, so looking after the bookings for a lovely small crew of talented artists.

You have touched many sides of the musical spectrum over your long and illustrious career. Tell us something we might never know about you?

I’m half Spanish and my Father was Julio Inglaises’ Manager, so that’s quite a crazy connection to Pikes!

Thank you for your valuable time guy!

Watch our full video from 2023