Being invited to BDL’s weekender by Big Narstie’s record label and my frequent affiliates Dice recordings, was like rolling the dice on a game of Aces and getting a no.6. Every time. ‘REALLY noooooooo! P*ss offfffff, serious???!’ I exclaimed in my usual no nonsense Northern, slightly tom boyish way, as the label broke down the offer in full. Dice recordings had 80 apartments to give away to friends, family and acquaintances to celebrate man like Big Narstie’s album release; ‘BDL Bipolar.’ Also on hand to celebrate Narstie’s success were his label mates, Scouse Tremz and singer Ohema X. The words “You only need to pay for your flights” had barely left the label execs’ lips before I flung myself to my knees to drag my cabin case out from under my bed and check how many EU plug adapters I had left (Why do they always get sucked into a vortex of nothingness every time you get back from your holidays!!)
The Never Ending Journey
After recruiting my fellow female skanker and general mad head mate, I began my arduous journey, first travelling to London the night before we took to the skies. The next day we had a journey longer than Dr. Alex’s quest to find love in the love island villa, before we had even boarded the plane! From Wimbledon to Putney, Putney to Waterloo and Waterloo to Stanstead airport we trekked, across the Sahara like temperatures (Ok slight exaggeration but this is England and we’re not used to deep fat fryer heat!), of London before we finally reached Alicante 6 hours later. (Next time I’m defo flying from my native Manchester)
Whilst waiting for the transfer Dice Recordings had kindly arranged for everyone, to take us to the villa we bumped into De Ja Vu’s back in the day presenter and one of its founders – Fatal. Fatal reminisced on the generosity of his friend Dean aka DJ Slimzee, and boundary breakers Wiley, Ghetts, Nasty Crew and Roll Deep who made it possible for the new generation to have solid platforms to come through. As we practically limped and crawled into the Palmera beach apartments, drained from half a day’s travel, I soon woke up when I saw Heavy D at reception in the middle of an impassioned plea to confused Spanish receptionists to catch the culprit who stole his Cîroc vodka! As Heavy asked the receptionists, “Well what did the guy look like who got off with my vodka?” the receptionists replied in broken English “Big…. errrrmmm, black man!”, I was low key creasing as I thought to myself – it’s most likely ‘Narstie who took it for a night cap! After settling in to our room boasting 2 queen sized beds, a quick change and freshen and off we went to pree the club venue for the Dice recording artists’ showcase taking place the following evening.
After a coma like sleep, it was off to BDL’s pool party at Shangrila Club, but not before having a quick catch up with pool party host Heavy D to get an update on the ciroc situ. Unfortunately the Cîroc stealer was never caught, but by this point Heavy D was in such a great mood talking to 2 giddy revellers from Kent at the hotel bar, who decided it was twerk time! After the impromptu twerk off by the crazy Kentonians, it was safe to say Heavy was unbothered by the missing Cîroc. After downing a tequila shot (before midday, standard on hol, don’t judge.) with Heavy D and his new friends we said our goodbyes and assured them we’d see them at the pool party a little later and went to pick up provisions and don our bikinis. Upon arrival at the pool party it was clear to see Dice Recordings went all out to lay on the lavish for all invited guests. The venue was plush, with a large pool centre of the outside bar, with an apprehensive Big Narstie peering into the water, undecided as to whether he should have a dip or not. Heavy D was larking about near the pool doing what looked like a cross between the robot and the bogle dance. Both Narstie and Heavy’ soaked up the sun and their success pool side as the palm trees swayed and reggae classics played.
After congratulating ‘Narstie on his upcoming album ‘BDL Bipolar’ (Since released 06th July) and discovering my new favourite drink – pink gin and tonic, I turned around to see beauty and the beard in the form of rapper Big Tobz. As I went over to greet Big Tobz, I couldn’t help but think he is like the black version of Edward from the twilight films as his skin literally glistens when illuminated by the sun! “Alright Tobz how ya doin?” I asked, forgetting how tall he was since I last saw him in February at the Bigga Fish event in Manchester.
“I’m good, I’m good still you know, you?” he answered.
“Yeah I’m great thanks, look at the settings, it’s gorgeous out here. Do you remember me interviewing you in Feb?” A look of confusion passed Tobz face “You had on a white Man u t-shirt with ‘Kool nuh’ on the back and we had a banter about your track ‘Controlla’ in the interview” I reminded.
“Oh YEAH! I do now, yeah I’m not on duty today but I wanted to come out and show my support to my bro Narstie and the mandem” he explained.
“That’s cool, good to see you though can I be cheeky and ask for a pic please?” Tobz was happy to oblige my request and my friends’, in fact I’d noticed that no matter how many times Big Narstie, Big Tobz, Stevo the mad man and Heavy D, were asked for pictures by friends and fans; they were only too happy to oblige and were genuinely gassed to be asked, even after what must have felt like the 100th request. My friend who I’d brought with me marvelled at how friendly everyone was, before she headed over to chat to Stevo the mad man. By the time the dance competition took place which led to one of the ladies from Leeds declaring “But I ain’t got a batty!” we were well and truly tipsy as we had a little shubs to some funky house and DnB tunes which had Big Narstie grinning at us and shouting over, “Nah, you lot are some skankers you know.”
By the time we got back to our room it was after 10pm, due to travel delays from the pool party. Let’s have a nap! We said. We’ll set our alarms for 1am. We said. We’ll definitely wake up for the artist showcase at club Xairo! We said. Simon would have said “Stop you’re lying sis, you’re chattin’ bare breeze”; as when we eventually awoke it was daylight and 7am in the morning!! Noooooooooo! We’d missed the artist performances, which had ended an hour earlier. All that travel and skanking and rushing from venue to venue had allowed sleep to take hostage of our energies, gutted! Once we’d consoled ourselves with a fresh baguette dipped in the delicious, Spanish delicacy that is allioli; we made do with the fact we’d be attending the BDL closing party which we’d be wide awake for after our supersized snooze!
As we arrived at the closing party at Legends wine bar, it was great to see all the people we’d spent the last 3 days with, all dressed up in their finest garms shaking a leg to the bombastic beats thumping from the speakers. As we thanked Dice Recording head honchos for a wavy weekend and sipped on Henny, I clocked Liverpool’s scouse trap rapper and Dice’ artist, Tremz; who had missed his flight back to the UK. Unfortunate for Tremz, but lucky for me as I took the opportunity to interview Tremz on his unique sound and future plans. As the mandem had impromptu 2 step shuffle dance offs and we ladies were whineing together in unison and hugging each other goodbye (We really did become one big happy family out there.) I felt bless to be given the opportunity to help Big Narstie and the whole crew celebrate his EPIC album ‘BDL Bipolar’ and to toast him on the next stage of his journey… Adios, same again next year lads! Signing off – Base Defence Lady.
Watch Big Narstie’s *NEW VIDEO* ‘5 AM’
Listen to Big Narstie’s *NEW ALBUM* ‘BDL Bipolar’ below: