We managed to catch a word with Judge Jules last week before he set off to perform his final Judgement Friday night of this years Ibiza season...
It’s with great honour that we welcome Judge Jules back to i:Vibes. We last spoke to the Judge way back in 2009 and a lot of things have changed since then. He moved on from his long running Radio 1 show to start a new career in the law business. His new profession though has not deterred him from the dance music scene and he still delivers tune after tune. One Judge Jules staple diet we were all please to hear after his announcement of the new profession was that the Judgment Sunday club night in Ibiza would continue, albeit one slight change. The night no longer wraps up a good weekend; it sets you up for one with the shift to Fridays at the fully refreshed and refurbished Eden.
The Judge won’t budge! We had the chance to fire a few questions the Judge’s way last week while he prepared for the final Judgement night of this years Ibiza season and he duly fired back a few answers. Silence please, the Judge is in session!
i:Vibes: It’s a great pleasure to have your company on i:Vibes again Judge! How has your summer season been this year?
Judge Jules: It has been one of a lot of change but very positive. Our Judgement Fridays party is going from strength to strength, as are our nights in Mallorca. I've had a great summer of dj gigs and I'm really pleased with the reactions that my latest tracks have been picking up.
i:Vibes: The big Ibiza news was the decision to take your Judgement Sundays night a few days earlier to Friday. What prompted the change of days?
Judge Jules: Well I've long wanted to move the night to Friday and with Eden being sold to new owners, I felt the timing was right so we made the jump. It was a risk but the proof of the pudding is in the continued big numbers.
i:Vibes: Is the Friday night just as busy as the Sunday nights used to be?
Judge Jules: Indeed they have – if anything slightly busier. There’s so much more of an Ibiza weekend break market then when we started on Sundays in 2000, meaning that Friday is full of fresh arrivals on the island.
i:Vibes: What has been your fondest memory from the Judgement Friday nights so far this season?
Judge Jules: I'd have to say the opening, but it did come stricken with fear. Shifting to Friday was such a big deal that I was concerned it might not work out. However, walking into the new club and seeing the place rocking brought me right back to that very first night 14 seasons ago at Judgement Sundays
i:Vibes: Who do you think has played the best set at Judgement Fridays this season?
Judge Jules: It's difficult to single anyone artist out because they've all played fantastic sets but this year has really seen Danny Howard come into his own. He's such a fantastic talent and has grown to become one of the firm favourites of the Judgement crowd.
i:Vibes: Is there any DJ out there you would love to play at the club night that you haven’t managed to get behind the decks yet?
Judge Jules: Paul van Dyk is someone I've always wanted to come and play at the club.
i:Vibes: How are you liking the brand new makeover that Eden had for this year’s Ibiza season, did you have any input in it as was it not you who designed the old DJ booth for the club?
Judge Jules: I was involved with the previous design but had no hand in the current one. However, I have to say that Eden is looking and sounding absolutely world class. The sound system is one of the best I’ve ever played on and the new dj box is a great space to entertain from.
i:Vibes: What effect has the brand new re-fit had on the punters, do they like the new sound system?
Judge Jules: The feedback I've had, from clubbers and Djs is of total thumbs-up. It's been a complete refit with everything but the name changing so those who went to the old wouldn't recognise the new, so to speak.
i:Vibes: Having hosted the Judgment Nights at Eden for some time now, you must have some very interesting situations come up. What has been the maddest Eden moment for you that you can remember?
Judge Jules: Watching Showtek entice the entire crowd to sit down on the dancefloor this summer would take some beating, especially when they shout “get up” and the whole crowd simultaneously rises to its feet and screams.
i:Vibes: The season will draw to a close this coming Friday with Danny Howard, Omnia, Solis and Sean Truby for company. What surprises have you in store to ensure the closing party signs off with a bang?
Judge Jules: Yeah it's shaping up to be a great closing party! I've been working on some new edits and special mixes however I don't want to give too much away. You'll have to join us to find out....
i:Vibes: Every season has those special tunes, what have been your favourite Judgement Friday favourites that have rocked the dance floor throughout this summer?
Judge Jules: Mat Zo – Rock the funky beat Judge Jules – The March Armin van Buuren - this is what it feels like (W&W mix)
i:Vibes: What’s different about the Ibiza today compared to what it was back in the 1990’s?
Judge Jules: The 90's was a very different era to today's Ibiza and far more ‘earthy’ and anarchic. Now we're living in a more diverse and upmarket Ibiza, offering so much beyond clubbing, including dining out and lifestyle entertainment. It’s hard to squeeze it all in each summer.
i:Vibes: Have you had the chance to experience any other club nights on the Island this year?
Judge Jules: Yes, I've been down to Privilege and Amnesia this summer and had great nights at both. I always try to check out what else is happening on the island. I've also been into Boom and other nights in Eden.
i:Vibes: You recently made your return to Radio 1 since leaving there last year. How was it going back to spin some tunes Judge Jules style on the Essential Mix?
Judge Jules: Very weird. Like returning home, and I was so honoured that they invited me back as I have many long and happy memories of my time at the station.
i:Vibes: Do you miss doing your show on Radio 1?
Judge Jules: Of course, but I also it was time to move on. I wanted to add my legal career into my life alongside the DJ touring. As such that meant I wouldn't be able to juggle my family life, career with a weekly radio 1 show.
i:Vibes: Your Global Warm Up radio show is thriving though, what special guests have you coming up on the show over the next few episodes?
Judge Jules: Our main focus is on the 500th episode which is happening imminently. Almost 10 years blasting out the tunes on countless stations around the globe!
i:Vibes: What new DJ’s have really impressed you with their sets and productions this year?
Judge Jules: I think Zak Moya and Omnia have exciting futures ahead of them.
i:Vibes: We’ve been treated to a few very tasty Judge Jules tracks this year with ‘Give Me A Reason’ and ‘Collide’ both released on the VANDIT label. What new beats has the Judge got ready to unleash as we head into the winter?
Judge Jules: Thank you for the kind words; glad you like the tracks. Coming up I have 'The march', followed by ‘Modulation’.
i:Vibes: It’s sometimes a side note to remember than you’re now an entertainment lawyer. How has the new profession gone so far?
Judge Jules: It’s been very rewarding combining lengthy experience as a promoter, radio presenter, DJ, music producer and A&R with my legal skills to advise the next generation of artists and entrepreneurs on their steps going forward in the industry.
i:Vibes: How hard is it juggling the lawyer stuff around with the ever frequent movements on the DJ circuit?
Judge Jules: Truthfully, not that difficult at all. I work as a lawyer during the week and my weekend is focused on music. I'm lucky in that I have a good team around me. So when it comes to say running Judgement there's a strong group of us to ensure all the necessary components come together.
i:Vibes: Do you think you will release a new artist album and if you do, what sort of sound would you want it to represent?
Judge Jules: I've not got any plans at present, due to having such a busy schedule. It’s all about singles for me at the moment, albeit lots of them…
i:Vibes: Have you had the chance to check out any of the big artist albums from this year like the Pet Shop Boys new longer? Do you have any collections that get heavy rotation on the Judge Jules ipod?
Judge Jules: Most of my home listening is chill-out based, as it’s a relaxing contrast to the banging tunes I play as a dj. I try to get my head around all the key new music that’s released, but soothing minor key chill-out moments are my ultimate antidote to heavy club nights.
i:Vibes: ‘Give it to me Judge’, ‘The Judge Won’t Budge’, both fraises any dance fan should be well accustomed to as well as your extravagant Synonyms that have entertained the radio airwaves for years. Do you have any favourite Judge sayings?
Judge Jules: Ones of my favourite would have to be ‘Like toilet paper we’re on a roll'.
i:Vibes: Finally, what’s one thing about Judge Jules that not many people know about?
Judge Jules: I’m sure a lot of people would be surprised to discover that during the day I work as an entertainment lawyer whilst Djing and music making at weekends, although I did give the game away earlier in this piece!
:: If you missed all the action at Judgement Fridays this year don't worry, the Judge will be back for the 2014 Ibiza season. You can see what you've been missing out on by checking out the galleries from this years nights at the official Judge Jules web site here!
JUDGE JULES & CHRISTINA NOVELLI - COLLIDE (VANDIT)