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Bootylicious, one of London’s most diverse LGBT+ parties, is BACK

Since launching back in 2001, diversity has been in the DNA of club night Bootylicious, being a safe and vibrant space for London’s non-white queer community to come party for almost two decades.

The queer community here in the British capital has seen its fair share of racism, with many LGBTQ+ party spaces still being uncomfortable environments for people of colour. Bootylicious’ organiser Thomas told us: “Normally when people talk about diversity they talk about a mainly white crowd where non-white people are welcome. Here it’s the other way round. It’s truly One Nation Under A Groove.”

Recalling the club’s beginnings, Thomas shared that “Bootylicious started at a time when “gay music” was Kylie and Stock Aitken Waterman mixes. Booty was and still is the place where you will hear authentic dance music, not to say you won’t occasionally hear the bubblegum versions but it’s more about presenting something unique. Not everyone who is gay is necessarily into pop kitsch. The energy of the place is something you need to experience yourself.”

On the last Saturday of the month over at Vauxhall’s Union nightclub, Bootylicious takes over with pumping beats and hip-thrusting rhythms. When questioned about why the club has stayed with its roots down in Vauxhall, the organisers can’t seem to part themselves from the “real, organic and unpretentious” vibe that Union has to offer. Above the large club, doors hang a rainbow flag and an EU flag side-by-side, which according to organisers is no coincidence since the venue hosts some of the more out-there gay clubs.

Over the years, the club has branched out into a bunch of different arenas. They saw great success in taking over the main floor of Urban World at the Scala. Even within the doors of Union, the night has developed to explore the array of urban music styles that are out there. Split between two dance floors, their focus can range from Oldschool Hipjhop-soul to new Afrobeat and Afro House. The club has seen its fair share of killer performers, with Miss Dynamite, Lady Leshurr and Jessie J taking it by storm.

When asked about how they’ve kept the party going for all these years, they told us that it’s all about the relationship they and their DJs have with their audiences. Bootylicious regular DJ Chillz has several radio shows and is making a name for herself as one of the foremost UK-based producers for Afrobeat and Afro House. There’s also Kartel Brown who’s not only a brilliant DJ and a budding beats producer but also the father of the House of Garcon producing TV documentaries about the scene. DJ/MC Tyron has been the voice of all major black gay events in the UK and DJ Biggy is known to many as the gay activist at the front of Blackout and UK Black Pride. Jeffrey Hinton is also a bit of an icon whose Club to Catwalk exhibition was seen by thousands at the V&A Museum.

Get tickets for next Bootylicious event 

Bootylicious – Booty Birthday Bash is on Saturday 28th September at Club Union, 66 Albert Embankment, SE1 7TP. 11 pm – 6 am. Students/Members £8, others £10-15. Guestlist available for birthday parties.

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