DJ’s across Northamptonshire have joined forces over the Easter bank holiday weekend to deliver a very special 48-hour live DJ set to raise funds for the NHS through NHS Charities Together, raising an impressive £3750.00. The event was organised by local DJ’s Ian ‘Loveshack’ Sutherland, Sarah Clarke and Mark Manning who all wanted to give something back to those working on the frontline during the Coronavirus pandemic, specifically the NHS.
Ian said “As some of us were considered vulnerable or high-risk, we decided to contribute by doing what I do best, DJ’ing! Lots of local businesses and fellow DJ’s in the entertainment and hospitality sectors have been affected by the outbreak of Covid-19, so it made sense to involve them and turn the event into a community effort.
“I was also aware that the public were being told to stay home and stay safe during the hot and sunny Easter weekend, therefore, through streaming live music into people’s homes, we encourage them to do just that, while lifting spirits at the same time.”
The idea was born in an internet chatroom where Ian called for support from other DJs and friends with technology skills that could ensure the stream could be broadcasted without the fundraisers taking place in the same room. The event saw over 40 DJs connecting to share their love for music, including BBC 1Xtra’s DJ Charlie Sloth. The community effort is where the name ‘DJs United’ was derived from.
DJ Percy Williams said “It was a real honour and privilege to play the opening set for the ‘DJ’s United for NHS’ event. With so many genres to choose from, I decided to play an upbeat set of music, with the hope of lifting the spirits to those that were watching and listening from home. We were also broadcasting on the hospital radio! I am so proud that we exceeded the target of £3,000 set by the organisers for this very unique event, it’s a massive achievement.”
The organisers of DJ’s United for the NHS set an initial target to raise £3,000 over the weekend, with the event running from 9:00pm on Friday until 9:00pm on Sunday. Over 37,000 tuned in over the weekend from the UK, Ireland, Poland, Spain and America, drawing in 200 donations totalling £3,700.
DJ Graham Da Silva said “The Coronavirus pandemic has been tough for a lot of people. Some have been taken away from their workplaces, friends and family. The opportunity to play music to people unable to leave their homes, while raising money for the NHS is something I am very proud to have been involved in. The support from viewers and listeners during my set was incredible. I had some lovely comments and of course the donations to NHS Charities Together made me feel like I was doing something worthwhile at such a difficult time.”
DJ Betti added “I was so honoured to be involved in this project. I live for music and raising money for charity. My Sunday afternoon set was dedicated to my sister and all of the other NHS nurses, key workers and everyone staying at home to help them. I tried to keep the vibes joyful and sunny, streaming love and respect to those on the front line.”
DJs United are planning to return on the 8th of May to mark VE day where they will be hoping to raise funds again for both the NHS and the Royal British Legion. Special thanks was given to everyone who supported the team during the event, including local businesses and live music venues as well as Gerhic Barreau and Mo Robson for their technical expertise.