60 Seconds with Judge Jules – Ibiza DJ

Judge Jules is the driving force behind Judgement Sundays in Eden, San
Antonio. With a house on the island, he spends half the year in Ibiza,
Essentialibiza catch up with him to find out what that’s like…

Judgement Sundays has been one of the most popular parties on the island
for over a decade, what would you attribute that level of success to?

I think having a great team of people on the ground in Ibiza is a big part
of our success. We all believe in Judgement Sundays and treat it like our
baby. A lot of time gets spent perfecting the night on a week-by-week
basis and constant evolution is essential. Now in our 12th year, we never
run out of ideas to keep Judgement a notch about the rest and maintain our
proud accolade of being San Antonio’s busiest night!

How do you maintain your enthusiasm for the project year on year?

By week 16 of the summer I’m just about ready to kiss goodbye to the
Island for a few months, but as soon as April/May comes along I can feel
the excitement bubbling up uncontrollably inside me. Any DJ who isn’t
overwhelmed with excitement about Ibiza should be doing another job!

Does it get any easier to programme your summer season; given you have
done it so many times?

One can’t rest on any laurels. Although there are a certain number of DJs
who’ve been with us for many seasons, the key to our success is in
spotting and blooding new Ibiza talent in the three different rooms of the
club.

Which guests are you looking forward to hearing this summer?

We have a couple of massive breakthrough artists playing their first Ibiza
shows with us this year. Russia’s Arty and UK producer/DJ Mat Zo. Both are
really doing the damage at the moment and I’m very excited to see them
play. Also, new backroom residents the Squatters fit like hand-in-glove
with the party spiritedness that we’re all about.

The economic state of the world is no secret but Ibiza continues to go
from strength to strength, what is it about Ibiza that captures the
imagination of the tourist?

If you’re into gambling you go to Vegas and if you’re into music you go to
Ibiza. The island hasn’t been immune to the global recession, but its
unique position as the global party capital makes it much better protected
than most. Ibiza is just about the only European tourist location that has
appeal right across the social spectrum, which is part of the magic.
Although it’s not cheap, it manages to attract both the wealthy and the
less-so, and this social mix is a key part of what makes Ibiza totally
unique.

What are the main changes that you’ve witnessed on the island during your
time here?

This is the first year that the smoking ban has properly been implemented.
For Ibiza it’s a major change. So far I haven’t noticed as much difference
as I did when the UK introduced its smoking ban in 2007. Time will tell
how people respond. On a wider scale, I’ve witnessed the island’s
infrastructure and the general level of development improve out of all
recognition. Whilst some might consider this a shame, like any other
product, Ibiza needs to compete with other tourist destinations, and the
improvements have permeated through every aspect of the island, including
roads, the airport, the development of new 5 star hotels and new beach
promenades.

Does Ibiza still play a role in breaking a new tune?

Absolutely. Each season there will be a few tunes that stretch across the
genre spectrum that you will hear every DJ playing on the island. These
usually go on to be the massive global dance hits of the year, played
first in Ibiza.

How important is Ibiza to the building of a global club brand?

For us it was everything, Ibiza is the home of Judgement Sundays and no
matter where the brand goes on tour people know exactly where it all
began.

Describe your first Ibiza experience?

I was brought over by a British promoter I worked for in London to play a
night he’d put together in Pacha. It was roughly twenty years ago, so I
was very young. Like most people’s first time in Ibiza, that’s about all I
can remember- the rest is a haze.

Away from the club how do you relax on the island?

I love to eat out and try plenty of new restaurants, which leads to my
other time filler in Ibiza – running. I try to run at least 5 kilometres a
day to keep this Ibiza belly at bay. Seriously- Ibiza has some of the
world’s best restaurants, in tandem with the gradual recognition of
Spanish cuisine as being amongst the finest in the world.

Which is your favourite beach?

Cala Conta is one of my favourites. It’s not far from my house, isn’t too
pretentious, and has everything one needs. A fantastic beach bar (Sunset
Ashram), a good restaurant (S’illa Des Bosc) and just about enough space
to move.

What are you listening too chilling on the beach?

I have a large collection of Caf´┐Ż Del Mar albums plus lesser-known
chillout tunes and laidback movie soundtracks on my iPod, which are
essential afternoon listening.

You’ve got a night off, where do you head for food?

My local restaurant Es Pi D’Or serves awesome Galician cuisine and has the
advantage of being open all year round, which many restaurants on the
island aren’t.

Name three essential items needed to survive your Ibiza trip?

A game plan, the open mindedness to drop the plan and go with the flow and
a holiday once you get home.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve seen/experienced on the island?

I exaggerate not when I tell you that I have seen it all. Not a day goes
by in Ibiza without some kind of surreal experience.