You know that way it feels when the planets align at exactly the right time to make great opportunities known to you? Well, this picks up from my last post very aptly. It confirms my thoughts on music, following conversations with an old colleague and good friend who has recently taken the bull by the horns and thrown himself into a new venture. Those conversations resonated with me for a number of reasons, but predominantly the thought that had gone into it and the level of passion & energy he was investing. To the uninitiated Loft55 might seem like any other brand of clothing and accessories range, however, after asking a lot of questions I was heartily impressed with the community value attached to the venture.
Where did the idea of Loft55 come from?
Rounding up my musical and social experiences from my teenage years to right now approaching 50. Musically I’ve enjoyed so much great music in the company of others through some cracking periods here in the UK. LOFT55 represents the community that surrounds enjoying music in the non online world. Socially, Ive lived all over the UK in various types of communities and I wanted to express how varied we are depending on our social and economic backgrounds. However we shouldn’t judge people online if we havent walked in their shoes. And of course I want to develop my clothing line but with a message of acceptance in our physical communities firmly behind it. Oh and plenty of anchors too
You mentioned a nod to New York, Brighton & Vietnam. What’s the story?
New York – It’s about The Loft and it’s host David Mancuso. It’s a community and music thing via the medium of a party that appeals to me. I’m a big fan of David. Sadly he passed away and I would encourage anyone to find out more about his legacy. I’m also a big fan of the history of New York’s disco and hiphop scenes from the 70s and 80s. You get a lot of that influence when Im hosting a LOFT55 sesh.
Brighton – I go back to my previous comments about physical community and my earlier parties. In 2008 I set up a series of parties catering for a musical approach that wasnt generally accepted or known about at that time. The parties were very grassroots and outside of clubland in the most part. The sense of community was huge as people were forming friendships through these early parties. The great thing was that at the time social media was only just taking off and people were relying more on physical interaction. This is why the parties worked so well and it formed my stance on physical community and how we act in our own to others being of such importance.
Vietnam – Vietnam blew our (my wife Nic and myself) minds. We were in country and were learning about the countries past. This was done through documentaries and also in regards to modern day Vietnam, our tour guides. The magnitude of how the people of the country have moved on from such a terrible past was inspirational. It was also good to learn about the war through watching documentaries. Being politically fluid gave me a non biased starting point to enable me to look at the human aspect, not the political one, from the years 1955 onwards.
We would do well to look at The Vietnamese and their ability to leave the past in the past more than we do. (myself included)
What are your aspirations with the venture?
You know what. It’s not about the end goal. For me it’s about the journey. LOFT55 could and probably at some point will fizzle away and become something else. Ive done the dj thing, got through that and found a purpose with LOFT55. I’ve already been offered money to extend the output but declined as I’m just pushing my boundaries and learning for now. Ideally I would like see LOFT55 develop as a clothing line where people understand the message that backs it up. Some good parties wouldnt go a miss as I havent just yet lost the appetite for playing music in front of a nice bunch of enthusiasts down the disco.
Do you have any events?
Only my launch night on Fri 4th May in Brighton. Other than that no plans yet. Just happy to go with the flow. If I feel the need to give things a little musical push then I’m quite experienced at putting a party together myself. Always worked outside the music industry so I’m seasoned in being a self starter when needed.
So, there you have it folks
Loft55 – A clothing line
Anchors vintage military attire
Dedicates positive vibes man
To communities who’ve inspired.
The past, it’s people, resilience
Musical enjoyment, friendships alive
For the journey, not the destination.
More than a clothing line – Loft55