A relatively new addition to the Leeds nightlife scene, Glug Glug brings worldwide music to the humble confines of Hyde Park Book Club. Editor Reece Parker met up with their founder Conor Aldis to find out what they do.
When I asked Conor what sort of music he was in to, he said: ‘‘I like music, as does everyone, I guess I just get more enjoyment from looking for music and using it as a means to learn about different places and times’’. Conor started Glug Glug in February, around the same time that Hyde Park Book Club first opened its doors.‘‘I didn’t really know anyone else to do it with in Leeds and I was getting pretty frustrated about not playing out, Hyde Park Book Club had just opened and was looking for people to start nights so I gave them a message even before I had the idea of Glug Glug’’. He continued: ‘‘It all fell into place and it’s been fun, it gives me an excuse to spend more time to dig a little deeper’’. With so many ways of discovering new music, Conor finds YouTube as one of the best ways for finding music that compliments his taste. The Glug Glug originator added that ‘‘going through YouTube is one of the best ways to find new music and when I find something I like, I look at what label it came out on, who else is on that label, what year it came out in and so on’’.
Unlike other club nights so often associated with Leeds, Glug Glug takes a thematic approach with its nights. From countries, to time, or genre and label, Glug Glug aims to inform attendees of the endless possibilities in discovering new music. Conor added: ‘‘I think it’s good to understand that there’s more to art and pop culture than that from the west. When I started out I had to ask around if anyone had West African records and would like to come and play. I think it confused some people. Now if I want to put on a night I’ve got my list of go-to guys who are up for digging through the sounds of a place which is great’’.
The first 3 Glug Glugs were at Hyde Park Book Club and then the Brazilian Olympics Opening Party was at Outlaws Yacht Club. Conor remembers the night well: ‘‘The Brazilian night was the biggest one I’ve been a part of but a lot of that is owed to Raf and George. I like to think what makes GG different is that we pay closer attention to the music than many events and also the fact that unlike other ‘world music’ events we don’t always fix our music to one place. Sounds of Heaven is coming up which will be a gospel night but with spiritual jazz and other transcendental bits’’.
Glug Glug is Conor’s first opportunity to try something out new: ‘‘I always have just had this strange desire to look for music and play music that fits. I’m not exactly sure what the aim is for the future, I will keep doing the little monthly ‘sounds of’ series and keep meeting people and something will sort itself out”. When I asked what Conor’s favourite night had been so far, he said: ‘‘The best night was Sounds of Japan. The artwork was wicked courtesy of my friend Calum. The music was wicked, courtesy of Joe, Robbie from Nord and Ben from Soul Control’’. Those who’ve already been to Hyde Park Book Club will be aware of its intimate setting. While that may affect the sound quality of Conor’s nights, it still adds to its charm. ‘‘All the Glug Glugs have been free and I want to keep it that way. They run from 7pm until 11pm, and being conveniently placed in Hyde Park I think people like the ease of spending an evening there and listening to something that they might perhaps have not heard before’’.
You can catch the next Glug Glug, Sounds of Heaven At Hyde Park Book Club at the end of October.