Me, Myself and I: Bobby Blanco

Bobby is one half of mega production and remix team Moto Blanco and he is DJing this Saturday at the XXL 18th Birthday, he loves tea cakes, and would loved to have seen danced at Studio 54.

Where are you from originally?

I’m a London boy born in Lambeth Hospital. Our family had a greengrocers on the Lambeth Walk but Mum and Dad wanted my brother and I to grow up surrounded by fields and trees, so we moved out to a new estate called Roundshaw, which was being built on the site of the old Croydon Airport.

And where do you live now?

I’m out in Surrey still, don’t cha know. I live with my missus, Marie, my sons Henry and Woody, and a tortoise called Dave.

What do you love about London and why?

There’s no place like London.There’s a bit of everything here. Nothing better than not getting the Tube and walking around in the sunshine. It really is home for me.

What was the first gay venue you visited?

My first visit to a gay club was an accident – yeah, I know all the straight boys say that, but it really was. A gang of us was on our way to a club called the Soundshaft (next door to Heaven) when we came across an open fire exit. Being cheapskates we thought we’d pile in for free, and squeezed through the door, but heard a loud “Oi!” from the bouncer. So we ran into the middle of the dancefloor and danced with our heads down hoping they’d never find us. After about 30 seconds of awkward shuffling I looked up to see I was surround by shirtless, sweaty men and noticed the music was a lot faster than normal. I then saw my other mates being held by security and being thrown out. I walked over to them and the bouncer was laughing saying “Not what you thought then, lads?” and pushed me back out the fire exit. I’ve got to say the atmosphere was a lot better than the club we ended up in – and I’m sure a few of the gang were still missing as well…

How would you describe the music you play at XXL?

You really can play a varied mix of styles at XXL. And between all the DJs and both rooms we really have got it all. I try and play a bit of everything when I’m there.

What was the last theatre show you saw,  where, and what did you think of it?

Not been to the theatre in years. I keep saying I will. Maybe I’ll get panto soon…

What is your guilty pleasure and why?

Tunnock’s Teacakes. So shit but so good at the same time.

Biggest extravagance?

Music – well, records, actually. I’m nowhere near as bad as I was mind, but when I look back and remember some shopping trips and watching the guy behind the counter adding up my pile of vinyl smiling, saying “I’ll do you a good price mate…” I shudder to think what I’ve spent.

Best gift you’ve ever received and why?

Mark Ames gave me an XXL leather cock ring the first time we played at XXL in the old Arches, and I put it on my wrist. Oh how I laughed when he told me what it was really for.

What has been the highlight of your career so far and why?

We have been nominated for a couple of Grammys, and an Ivor Novella award in the past (didn’t win any of them though), which was nice. But those aside – and I know this is cheesy – but there is nothing like moving a room full of people and getting a lot of love as the lights come on. Get’s me every time.

If you could go back in time which year would you choose and why?

I know everyone says it but I would have loved to have experienced the club scene in New York in the 70s and 80s. To visit the Paradise Garage, The Loft, Studio 54, The Gallery, Danceteria and so many other places I could mention, would have been so good.

What’s the best party you’ve ever been to and what made it so good?

I was lucky enough to be in Ibiza in the late 80s and visit Ku, Amnesia etc, and that was amazing. Dancing in those open air clubs until the sun came up will always stay with me. It was a real special mix of many factors that made it a magical time and definitely set me on my journey of doing what I do now.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given?

Worrying doesn’t take away tomorrow’s trouble, it takes away today’s peace.

Who is your LGBT+ hero and why?

I’m gonna say a musical hero of mine, Sylvester. He was the first man I’d seen dressed as a woman (other than Dick Emery as Mandy) and I was in awe of what I was hearing. I’ve read a lot of interviews with him and he really didn’t give a fuck about conforming to what people wanted him to look or act like.

Who are the most entertaining people you follow on social media and why? 

I have a real love/hate relationship with social media but my old mate DJ Artwork is worth a follow for the lolz.

Where in the world would you like to visit before you die and why? 

I’m lucky to have done a lot of travelling when we played around the world. But you don’t really get to see or experience the city you’re in when the schedule is tight, so I’d love to go back to Tokyo with the family – I really loved it there.

What is one thing you wish you knew when you were younger?

That in the future I’d have a calculator in my pocket 24/7. Long division used to hurt my brain.

You can hear Bobby DJ this Saturday (29 Sep) at XXL at Pulse, I invicta Plaza, Blackfriars Bridge Road, SE1. 

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