Vote Yes and cross that fine line to equality #‎MakeGráTheLaw‬

11350494_10152956370186443_2214757920524245863_nWe are so close. And yet we could be so far away. Equality is knocking on Ireland’s door and I’m praying it will be heard. This week I interviewed a prominent LGBT+ campaigner from Ireland and because it was a pre-referendum interview with a post-result publication date I had to ask two questions about the Same-Sex Marriage Referendum result in Ireland.

One question expressed my congratulations and asked just what it meant now Ireland had embraced change whilst the second shared heartfelt and dismayed commiserations, enquiring just how the campaign for LGBT equality in Ireland fights on after defeat. The difference in the two answers really got to me, the lump in my throat growing as I transcribed the joy and relief in the first and the despair and dejection in the second. For me the two answers taken together illustrated just how fine the line between the freedom and oppression, acceptance and, yes, homophobia can be.

Ireland is so close today to crossing that line and every fibre in my body is hoping for a yes, for common sense and respect of others to win the day. Because if our close neighbours can make the leap to full LGBTQI equality then there’s only a few steps more for us to take together to convince other nations across the globe to do so to.

So today, unlike when we play them at rugby, I’m willing Ireland over the line. Here’s hoping Ireland’s yes spurs us on to demand equality in the 81 countries where homosexuality is criminalised. Here’s hoping Ireland finally score a winner for equality.

GE15: It’s about us, not them

This election appears to be about the leaflets. The endless, endless leaflets and yet, it should be about the brown envelopes. The pay packets, HMRC notifications, benefit sanctions, Income Tax notices, student loan invoices, social housing waiting lists, asylum refusals and NHS appointments. The envelopes that turn us against each other, pitting the so-called scroungers against hard working families, the immigrants against the low paid, the Other against the ‘English’, the poor against the wealthy, the landlords against the tenants. And that’s without getting into the envelopes filled with nudges from the media moguls, big corporations, tax dodging donors or lobby firms.

I could talk about the envelopes that scare me, the cuts that will affect my life and those I love. The services I rely on to see me through – the damage already done to the NHS I need to help me manage to live with BPD and the welfare system that supports me in times of hardship. I could talk about the nurses that saved my missus, frustrated by Jeremy Hunt’s top down reorganisation of the NHS. I could talk of the disillusioned young people in my life slogging through an education system cut to the bone. I could talk of how I am the last of my low paid generation ever able to afford to buy their own home, whilst those around me wonder how they will ever keep up with their ever-increasing rent. I could talk about the teachers I respect, fuming with rage at the constant interference and creeping privatisation of education. I could talk about my partners life as a public servant – working long, unrelenting hours with no hope of a pay rise in the foreseeable future in a service constantly undermined by lack of funding. And I could talk of my fear as a member of the LGBTQI community who, whilst enjoying equality at home, has to watch those who govern me sit idly by as fellow Commonwealth and G8 members discriminate and legislate against those who only wish is the freedom to love who they choose.

FullSizeRenderI could talk about the promises and bribes heading my way if I vote for Cameron, of a Married Persons Tax allowance and lower income tax and how I will supposedly benefit from a growing economy but…but? How can I vote blue? How can I vote for the Tories when how this nation moves on is not about me? It’s about us. The us who will find their Working Tax Credit cut whilst wages stagnate, who’s Child Benefit will cease, the young people will be cut off from any support be it housing benefit, JSA or FE funding, those who will be hounded off disability benefits, the thousands who find themselves queuing at food banks because of benefit sanctions and those who will spend childhood in poverty. The us they said were in it together. The us they promised five years ago would share the pain of a global banking crisis. The us they ignore. The us that ended up Con-Demed.

It’s time to think about us, not them. To use yet another piece of life changing paper this General Election and make a change. Be it Labour, Green, SNP or Plaid Cymru, anything has got to be better than this. It’s not about them – the bankers, the moguls, the corps and the tax dodgers. It’s not about Dave’s mates. It’s about our mates. It’s about investing in the future of all of us, not just investment bankers, property magnates and huge corporations set to monetise our public services. Its about how we bridge that divide, come together and leave no one behind. Its about bringing fairness and equality back to the fore and ensuring next time a brown envelope hits the doormat of the disabled, the unemployed, the elderly, the sick, the single parent or the low paid, its not greeted by fear. We’re not what the Tories have made this country. We’re better than this. We are all in this together only if we can make Britain fairer together. So go vote, it might encourage them to do the right thing. It just might.

Queenie gets Rude Boy with Waynsie

IMG_1280Ever wondered what happens between London and Brighton if you fancy a bit of a groove? Well here’s your answer. This month Queenie chats to DJ Waynsie Rude Boy who intends to move your dancing feet up Crawley way! Be prepared for some serious Saturday night wiggling ladies and gentlemen…….

Hello! What is your DJ name? DJ Waynsie Rude Boy.

Where can we see you playing these days? Every other Saturday for my night Dirty Pop at Bar 7 in Crawley.

How would you describe your djing style? Eclectic!!! I like to take people on a journey starting off with funky and soulful house followed by dance classics then mash ups and finishing off with a section of classy cheesy pop.

What’s your favourite song of all time? It’s virtually impossible to say as I have so many for different moods and times. But one of my all time fave dance tracks that I really think has it all and I never tire of is Robert Miles’ One And One… always gives me goose-bumps! Best pop track for me is Madonna’s Express Yourself (Shep Pettibone Mix)

Which tune always fills up (or rescues) your dancefloor? Depends on the venue but at Dirty Pop guaranteed floor fillers are Madonna’s Like A Prayer or Rhianna vs Faithless Only Girl In Insomnia.

What would be your ultimate dream gig? Opening the doors to Studio54 or The Blitz again for a no holds barred, all-nighter!

Name a tune you wish you’d never played (and why!)? Gangnam Style by PSY….. due to pressure outside the booth, honest! But it abused all that I’m about as I hate it. It felt bad that I buckled to pressure and played something that made me feel sick and didn’t fit in with my set. I feel DJs are working their art form and are not juke boxes. Let them do their thing and enjoy the ride.

Guilty pleasure? 80’s Pop and Movie Soundtracks!

What’s been your best ever gig? Season Close at The Point in Zante, Greece. Seeing the crowd responding with passion to the musical journey I had selected for the night in all the right places was truly amazing. There’s nothing like seeing both arms up with tune adoration everywhere in front of you!

Tell us a secret! I’m not loving Madonna’s Rebel Heart Album like I should and I feel terrible for it!

Waynsie Rude Boys May Top Five

Madonna Living For Love (Mike Rizzo’s Funk Generation Club Mix) Interscope Records

Cheryl Cole I Don’t Care (Cahill Club Mix) Polydor Records

Blonde I Loved You (Extended Mix) Parlophone

Sam Smith I’m Not The Only One (Grant Nelson Remix) Capitol

Freemasons True Love Survivor (Extended Mix) Freemason Recordings

Catch DJ Waynsie Rude Boy alternate Saturdays at Bar 7, Peglar Way, Crawley RH11 7AG

Dot Dot Dot fill the space

1520651_750374031736041_2675534536981219546_nLife is always better when the dots connect. Life is always better with Dot Dot Dot, a new label set to make your life better with their stunning rota of dirty house and tech releases. There’s plenty to tease your tastebuds as their new 5 track sampler of the DotDotDot label’s forthcoming Summer 2015 adventures including Maze & Masters’ ‘Carry Me’, Tom Frankel’s ‘Unconscious Adventure’ & ‘Light Frenzy’, and Dayne Harper’s ‘Baby, It’s Me’ & ‘The Prize’ ensure the wiggle is had. Grab a listen today and fill in the dots in your life.

Ouch House Calendar : May 2015

Ouch House May 2015

Download your free printable PDF of this month’s installment of the Ouch House 2015 calendar here 

Wildblood + Queenie’s Gscene May Wonders

05_Gscene_May15 (dragged) 2So we can safely say summer is almost here. Sunshine, beach, Brighton at its best. And here’s a May soundtrack to keep it so. There’s a mountain of good stuff out there that has us wiggling and smiling in the sunshine as we head towards a summer of love. From the intelligent deep grooves of Braille’s Mute Swan on Infinite Machine to the cheeky 80s retake that is DJ Cam’s Miami Vice on Inflammable via the lush beats of Terranova’s Restless on Kompact, the state of house right now is more than good. It’s outstanding.

Head towards Dame Music 5 Years Anniversary if you want a lesson in the right kinda house. It’s relentless in its electronic brilliance and worthy of your attention. As is the lazy laidback loopiness of Glenn Astro’s Throwback on Tartelet, the un-missable wonder of HNNY Edits on Local Talk, the experimental genius of Actress’s DJ-Kicks and the house love shown by Lauer on the exquisite Borndom for the Permanent Vacation label.

As for our May marvels? Monki FABRICLIVE 81 will keep you nodding till you can nod no more whilst Kerrier District’s 4 on Hypercolour will tempt you back to the days of jazzed up lush and lovely house – with Brush The Bush being one of our stand out favourites of the album. (Can’t think why?). Add the sublime sound venture New Day from Satoshi Tomiie for AbstractArchitecture, the truly outstanding Horizontalism from the sound craftsman that is Fink on R’COUP’D and the stunning Flash Atkins The Life and Times on Paper Recordings and you have a summer soundtrack perfect for beachside antics. Enjoy.

Wildblood and Queenie’s Massive May 12”s

Sylvan Esso H.S.K.T (Hercules & Love Affair Bleeps and Vox Mix) Partisan Records Stunning summer anthem Hercules style. Roll on Brighton Pride!

Darius Syrossian All Night Long (Main Mix) Mile End Records  We. Are. Not. Worthy.

Jaymo & Andy George x Sidney Charles Hip Shots Moda Black Caution Your Blast EP action that has us jumpin’.

Slope Lost In Space Black Catalogue Tasty laidback house jam that demands you get lost in space

D’Julz & Phil Weeks Ligne B Rex Club Music New label, same quality grooves from Queenie’s fav Phil.

Citizenn Tied (12″ Mix) Crosstown Rebels Hypnotic groove destined to destroy the summer dancefloors.

Art Department Catch You By Surprise (Guy Gerber remix)  No.19 Music File under: genius

Liston feat Aisha Zoe Until Dawn Nightbus / Chris Coco Music Future bass from the Nightbus wonder Liston has us spellbound.

Feral Is Kinky Lick Shot (Hifi Sean Remix) Squirt Records Hifi and Feral combine for a squirt fuelled bass house beauty.

Tainted Souls Basement Jam Madtech Twisted bassline action that will pleasure you all night long.

Dear Katie Hopkins, it was The Sun what gotcha

The_sun_logoYou’ve been in my head for days. Much to my disgust. I’ve tried to ignore you. I’ve listened to the advice that you are fuelled by my indignation. But, but, but I just can’t let it lie. There’s self-seeking publicity, there’s rant upon rant in the endless craving for headlines but this Hopkins, this has crossed a line.

You don’t have to go far back in history to recall the damage rhetoric like yours does. “Vermin”, “cockroaches”, all words that sat happily in speeches as Nazi’s reclassified Jews as sub-human in the 1930s or as Hutu’s listened to broadcasts intent on the destruction of the Tutsi people in the 1990s. Each shamed humanity. And each was driven with a bigotry so vile it changed continents forever.

You call migrants attempting to cross the mediterranean a “virus”, worthy of gunships or burning boats, as if they are no longer human. As if they have no place in your world, a world of privilege and shelter and food and safety. When was the last time you had to flee for your life? When were you threatened with rape or faced beheading or enslavement because of your religion? When did you have to leave your home, encountering danger at every turn just in an attempt to provide for your family? I doubt you ever have – but then you are not The Other, sat in the crosshairs of your hatred. You are a Brit, living in a warm home paid for by peddling ignorance and hatred for Rupert Murdoch.

Thing is I am an Other. I’m a queer, thankfully living in a tolerant society. But rhetoric like yours fills me with fear. Because rhetoric like yours leads to a bad place. A very bad place, where those who are not like you don’t deserve what you have. No equality, no empathy and, according to your column inches, no life. Your rhetoric and that of the publications you work for leads to an acceptance of prejudice, an alliance with fear that drives the nation’s agenda from ballot box to street, from political policy to the world stage.

And for allowing you to be part of this process I hold The Sun responsible. Yet again driving across the message that we are not all equal. Migrants, the unemployed, trans people, queers, miners, football fans, people like me – they’ve had us all in their sights over the decades. Believing that some deserve more than others and that hatred, bigotry and xenophobia, all wrapped up in so-called free speech with a nice byline and a teasing headline, is what we want and excuses the hatred. Well it isn’t and it doesn’t.  And it shouldn’t be allowed to continue unchallenged. Politicians may be too afraid to deal with the horror in the Med as they chase crosses in boxes from the fearful but some of us aren’t.

Maybe we can’t do more than petition, boycott, tick the boxes of those brave enough to make a stand or make a social media noise but, just as against the bigotry of Jan MoirRichard Littlejohn, and Garry Bushell that came before you, when we raise our voices, complain to the IPSO, use our purchasing power and convince the money – the advertisers, the sponsors, the broadcasters – that there is a line, they will eventually listen. And then we can stop listening to you. Because you crossed a line and the decent and I are not coming with you.

*Note to the reader. If you do fancy making a noise – and if lots of us do it becomes a roar – you can sign this petition.