Eddy Says

Eddy Says: The Naughty North and the Sexy South

By | Published on Monday 19 September 2011

Eddy Temple-Morris

Everyone loves a bit of rivalry. So much so that lines are often drawn on the most ridiculous and arbitrary of terms. In London, East hates West and North hates South. That’s just the way it is, and Londoners on any one side can give you endless reasons why those who live at the opposite end of the compass are terrible people who live in awful surroundings. So, in the spirit of promoting togetherness in the capital, Eddy invites you, wherever you’re from, to join him at his new club night in Brixton.

Are you North or are you South? Are you left bank or right bank? These geographical dividing points are so definite, so defining, and the tribal boundaries they mark run oh-so-deep.

I grew up a North West Londoner, first in Notting Hill, back when it was rough, in the late 60s and early 70s, then Hampstead, before it went really posh. After that, I’ve lived, over the years, in places as diverse as Fulham, Angel, W10, Brockley, Archway and Balham.

The first flat I bought was in Westbourne Park, where I spent a happy decade on one of the most infamous sprawls in West London, The Trellick Estate. Even under constant threat by car burning London-Irish hoodies, I mostly loved it. And, more to the point, in those days I felt mildly threatened every time I had to go to South London.

“Oh no, not Brixton Academy again…”

Whenever something happened south of the river that meant myself or any of my mates had to cross the water, eyes would roll. We would cross the Thames with fear and trepidation, our knuckles white around our steering wheels or handlebars.

My next move was disastrous. I moved into North London and bought a flat in Archway, to be closer to my girlfriend, two streets away, then we split up the week after I moved in.

To compound the awkwardness of living two streets away from your ex and driving past her flat every day, I was unlucky enough to move in above the most horrid neighbour you could ever imagine. Proper neighbour from hell stuff. Yet my fear of South London was still overriding, even though I started regularly hanging out, and going out, in and around Clapham and Brixton the following year.

So much so that when I finally did move south of the river, it wasn’t because the area had any lure, it was for one simple reason: schooling. My overriding concern by this time was Tone, my gorgeous eleven year old boy, of whom I have what used to be termed ‘custody’, after an acrimonious and buttock clenchingly expensive court battle. The school he went to in Archway, deemed “outstanding” by the government inspectors, was teaching bible parables as history, and brainwashing its kids into thinking that, for example, Adam and Eve were the first actual people on earth.

This sickened us both and I started looking and asking around about schools in other neighbourhoods. My quest lead me to Clapham Manor School and, to cut a long story short, Tone ended up there, and soon became happy, focussed and engaged. He had a blinding last year and a half of primary school, under an amazing staff.

During this time I’ve fallen in love with South London. All of the xenophobic feeling I had, instilled into me over the years by North and West Londoners, vaporised over a short time. My prejudices were all unfounded and my fears unwarranted. I personally found Brixton, Clapham and that area around Brockwell Park to be my favourite place to live of all the places I’ve ever lived.

I found the landscape greener, and I’ve found people to be so friendly that I’m now cursing all those people that misinformed me, and I regret the fear I had of the Sexy South. I feel like I’ve been missing out on some kind of secret for years. I’ve laughed inwardly that the prejudice and misinformation might actually originate from South Londoners who don’t want the secret to get out.

I’ve just come out of the most stressful period of my life, moving to a catchment area the size of a postage stamp to get Tone considered for a place at a really good secondary school. We’ve now settled, very happily, in Herne Hill/North Dulwich and are charmed by Brockwell Park, Dulwich Village, Sydenham Woods, and I really ‘get’ Brixton now.

I’m not getting all evangelical about it, this is just a personal thing. The Sexy South is, for me, by far the nicest place to live of all the neighbourhoods I’ve lived in. And over the years, that’s a lot of hoods. I’m not saying all you North Londoners should move South – many of my favourite places and people remain north of the River Thames – I’m just saying don’t believe the geo-haters that spread propaganda and misinformation about South London. Keep an open mind and don’t be afraid to come down and hang out – that alone changed my life for the better.

Which brings me neatly and happily to the main point of this piece: the return of Remix Night. It’s happening. But it’s not called Remix Night for this incarnation. I’ve been asked to be resident at an exciting new WEEKLY night in October, and it’s right on my new doorstep: The Fridge in Brixton.

You may have read that this legendary London venue is reopening its doors under the new name of Electric Brixton, after being lovingly restored to its Victorian glory, with a mission statement to fill the gap vacated by The Astoria.

Friday nights at Electric, from October, will be taken over by Get Loaded, the team who brought you The Gallery at Turnmills, and who went on to launch Get Loaded In The Park (on Clapham Common), Get Loaded In The Dark (that brilliant New Years Eve night at Brixton Academy) and The SW4 Weekender that saw Pendulum lock horns with Tiesto, also on Clapham Common. The point is, they have become something of a South London brand and, now I’m a South London resident, I’m doubly delighted to have been asked to do this. We’ll be entertaining some of our favourite DJs, producers and bands over the next few months, while we see if a night like this, at a venue that holds 1500, can work somewhere like Brixton.

We’re keeping ticket prices low, and pledging support to lots of new bands and upcoming DJ producers. We’ll be recording sets, for those that want that, and playing key tracks on The Remix on Xfm, as ‘live tracks’. I’ll even do my show live from there once in a while.

Logistically, it works out fine, as I always finish my show at 1am (the last hour is always pre-recorded) so I can play the last set from 1.30-ish til 3am each week.

I’ve had so many emails and tweets asking when the clubnight is starting again. So, I wanted to write about it here to let you all know. But I’ve put it in the context of this Naughty North vs Sexy South piece, because I don’t want anyone to feel as though they can’t come because it’s in Brixton. The Victoria line is bullet train quick and there are loads of nightbuses too. Plus it’s actually surprisingly central – it’s a stone’s throw to Elephant And Castle and therefore Shoreditch, my old clubnight stomping ground, is really a lot closer than I’d ever imagined.

So, there you go. New club night, every Friday. And I don’t ever want to hear any North Londoners saying: “Brixton… aaaaah no, I can’t be arsed to go to South London”. Brixton is a fantastic place, and I think the relaunched Fridge will really help cement the neighbourhood as one of London’s best, most vibrant and beloved entertainment hubs.

X eddy

Get Loaded at Electric Brixton (formerly The Fridge)

7 Oct (launch night): Shake Aletti (live), Dan Le Sac, Foamo, Eddy Temple-Morris
14 Oct: Retro/Grade (DJ set), Eddy Temple-Morris
21 Oct: Kry Wolf, Monkey Mafia (DJ set), Eddy Temple-Morris
28 Oct: Tropics (live), Disclosure (live), Duffstep (live AV show), Eddy Temple-Morris

Tickets: £6 before 11.30pm, £8 after 11.30pm, £5 NUS