Original Hacienda resident DJ Paulette has been awarded DJ Mag Top 100 DJs 2022 Lifetime Achievement gong.
The Manchester-based DJ has been given the award in recognition of her pivotal role at the center of a number of significant moments in European electronic music history over the past thirty years.
A DJ, radio and TV host, A&R and PR for over 30 years, whilst still in her twenties Paulette made history as the Hacienda’s first female DJ resident – first coming on board to play the club’s gay night, Flesh Nites, with organizers bringing her in after seeing just one DJ set, which happened to be her debut.
She stayed for four and a half years, progressing to resident along the way, then moved down to London to play at the Garage club nights at Heaven, followed by residencies at Brighton’s The Zap Club and the Ministry of Sound.
Later, in 2004, she lived in Paris for some time and has also done some stints in Ibiza, but today she can be found in her hometown of Manchester – the place where she was born and raised.
Speaking to DJ Magabout her heady career, she described how her first ever DJ gig came about, saying: “Fast-forward six years of buying records and whatever and a friend of mine knew somebody who was putting on a party at the No.1, and she’d spent all the money on the promo.
“She didn’t have any money to pay a name DJ, and was told about somebody who had lots of records who could do it. She must’ve been so fucking desperate!”
DJ Paulette first started off in music working for Manchester Piccadilly 261 radio station, aged 18, as a cub reporter but has since gone on to do great things – including helping the Roni Size & Reprazent ‘New Forms’ album win the Mercury Prize.
Moving down to London in the mid-90s, she got a PR job at Mercury Records to supplement her DJing income.
Speaking about that time in her life, she told the magazine: “Everything that happened for Roni Size Reprazent, and also 4hero who were nominated for the Mercury Music Prize, came off the back of the press campaign and their live gigs.”
“It’s very rare to translate a good press campaign for some dance music singles to the Mercury Prize, it has to cross them over into the nationals and broadsheets everywhere.
“Obviously they had to perform live, I would never take credit for their creativity, but without that press campaign… there were so many other bands who were really great live, but they didn’t have the press.”
She would then go on to win a gold record for the Reprazent PR campaign after they sold 100,000 copies of ‘New Forms’ and were nominated for two Brit awards.
It’s a well-deserved accolade for the Manchester music legend, who is also on the cusp of releasing a new tell-all book – detailing her amazing 30-year career and shining a light on discrimination within the dance music world.
Titled Welcome To The Club: The Life And Lessons Of A Black Woman DJ, Paulette says it will tell the ‘candid story’ of her hugely successful DJ career, which has seen her hold high profile residencies at some of the best parties in the world, including the Hacienda, Ministry of Sound and Queen Club in Paris.
Described as both a memoir and a “call to arms”, Welcome To The Club will feature contributions from some of her fellow UK DJs including Dave Haslam, Gilles Peterson, Jamz Supernova, Sonique, Smokin Jo, Norman Jay and Jaguar.
It’s sure to be filled with some amazing stories. She is, after all, a true dance music icon and has been at the heart of the global house scene for many years.
Music memorabilia shop with a difference opens in Manchester, and it’s a shrine to all things 1990s
A new music memorabilia shop filled with items created by the legendary design outfit Microdot has opened in Manchester.
For the uninitiated, Microdot – founded by industry icon Brian Cannon – was behind some of the world’s most famous album covers.
The studio created record sleeve artwork for every piece of music released by Oasis and Verve in the 1990s, from the living room of Definitely, Maybe to the sunken Rolls-Royce in a swimming pool for Be Here Now.
Unlike other music memorabilia stores, everything inside the new Microdot Manchester store has been created by the design outfit.
It’s all displayed on walls and rails like a museum – but just about everything is up for sale.
One exception is a fireplace standing on one wall, which featured on Oasis’s Definitely, Maybe album cover and is currently on loan from Bonehead himself.
Particularly fascinating are the annotated sketches from Brian, where’s he’s revealed some behind-the-scenes insight into these legendary album covers.
Like the familiar assortment of items around the pool on Be Here Now? Yeah, totally random stuff picked by Liam and Noel. No significance at all.
And that man with a moustache who pops up on three different Oasis covers, including the D’ You Know What I Mean artwork? It’s Brian’s dad…
You’ll also find walls covered in photo prints, from behind-the-scenes images to pictures of bands on tour, from the Gallagher brothers to John Cooper Clarke.
Graeme Park thanks fans for ‘valued support’ and launches fundraiser in memory of late son
Graeme Park has thanked fans for their “valued support” following the devastating passing of his teenage son last week.
The former Hacienda legend and his family have also set up a fundraiser in his memory.
The DJ took to social media last week to share the heartbreaking news that his “true warrior” son Oliver had passed away at the age of 18 after a year-long battle with a rare cancer.
In a tribute to the late teenager, Graeme described his son as a “kind, loving, and beautiful soul” who “fought so hard until the very end” but was sadly taken “far too soon” when he “had so much more love to offer to this world”.
Graeme’s initial post drew in thousands of messages of love and support from the Greater Manchestermusic and entertainment community and beyond, as well as from famous name including from Vernon Kay, Sacha Lord, and DJ Paulette.
He asked fans to “bear with me” and confirmed that he will not be performing DJ sets or appearing on the radio for the time being.
Now, a week after sharing the news of Oliver’s passing, Graeme, his wife Jen, and son Ben have taken the time to thank everyone for their “wonderful and valued support” – adding that the family is “heartbroken” to have lost a son, grandson, nephew, cousin and friend.
“Your messages and kind words have been well received and have offered us all some much needed strength and hope at what has been a very difficult time,” Graeme continued.
“Friends, colleagues, fans, followers and complete strangers have all been in touch in person, via phone, email and social media offering support and more, and it really has been heartwarming to read all the messages and to listen to everyone who’s called.
“Apologies if I’ve not responded to everyone, but rest assured we all really do appreciate the sentiment.
“Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.”
Graeme also confirmed that, after lots of discussion following so many reaching out and asking if there’s anything they can do to help, the family has decided to set up a JustGiving page in Oliver’s memory to help raise “much needed funds and awareness” for Sarcoma UK.
Sarcoma UK is a national charity that funds vital research, offers support for anyone affected by sarcoma cancer, and campaigns for better treatments.
“After complaining of leg pain over a long period, Oliver was eventually diagnosed as having a malignant nerve sheath tumour that was a type of sarcoma, hence our decision to help Sarcoma UK,” Graeme explained.
Sarcoma is a type of cancer that develops in the bone and soft tissue. It is difficult to diagnose and one of the hardest to treat – “but by donating in memory of Oliver, you can help change this.”
“Your donation will help researchers find answers, keep the specialist Support Line open, and raise awareness to improve treatment and standards of care,” Graeme concluded, “Your donations go so far in helping the sarcoma community.”
Over 200 people have already donated to the JustGiving fundraiser, with the total now at £6,900 and counting by the minute.