“One night in the disco, on the outskirts of” ………. er, Hither Green actually. Yes, we were invited by disco revival night outfit, Haven’t Stopped Dancing Yet, to get in touch with our inner disco diva at St. Swithun’s church hall, just off Hither Green Lane SE13. Five years ago, journalist Nikki Spencer had the idea of recreating that 70s/80s disco mania for the generations that enjoyed it the first time round, and for those that followed. From that idea has grown this hugely successful pop-up club night, which uses various other South London venues too, including the Blackheath Halls, the Trafalgar Tavern in Greenwich and Brockley’s famous Rivoli Ballroom.
We got there about 8.30 but the packed house was already rocking with DJs Lord Anthony and the amazing hula-hooping Da’Lynne spinning those familiar sounds which have filled dance floors for the last 40 years or so. I’ve been to a lot of clubs in my time but this place had a unique atmosphere, think Mamma Mia collides with Saturday Night Fever in a glorious mashup. There are people in period fancy dress, retro sweets and ice-pops, and dance competitions along with the choreographed dances led by our DJs – we got on the Love Train, we got our Boots Up’side our Heads and we didn’t Stop Dancing.
It was a fantastic fun night out, and at £10 per head plus the very reasonably priced bar, very much value for money. You can buy tickets in advance and it usually sells out, so booking is advised; the next club night is in March, which will be their 5th Anniversary party, so no doubt another full house (10% of profits go to Cancer Research UK). Promoter Nikki has really tapped into something here – the thing you noticed about the crowd was the huge age range, so it’s obvious that there’s an appetite for this kind of feelgood club night which appeals right across the board. She and her partners want to build on the success they’ve had, so I don’t think we’ll stop dancing anytime soon.
Back at SLB Towers, there was an animated discussion about the music of the 70s – which were the best dance tracks? After an in-depth search of our vast music catalogue (Spotify!) we came up with the official SLB Top Ten 70s floor-filler club classics – see if you agree with these:
1. Le Freak – Chic 2. He’s the Greatest Dancer – Sister Sledge 3. Can You Feel the Force – The Real Thing 4. Disco Inferno – The Trammps 5. Disco Nights (Rock Freak) – GQ 6. Got To Be Real – Cheryl Lynn 7. The Groove Line – Heatwave 8. Tonight I’m Alright – Narada Michael Walden 9. Funkin’ for Jamaica – Tom Browne 10.Check Out The Groove – Bobby Thurston
Meanwhile, back on the outskirts of ‘Frisco – isn’t that Silicon Valley nowadays? They’ve probably got their heads stuck in a laptop all day and night – probably haven’t danced for years. We’ll have to do it for them!