LOVEBOX 2016: What To Expect From London's Biggest 'Party In The Park'

Co-founder Jools Butterfield spills the beans

ESQUIRE: Explain Lovebox to someone who's never been.

JOOLS BUTTERFIELD: Lovebox is a big party in the park. We bring the best production content of any London festival to the event, we add in the best club promoters in town, the hottest acts in Europe and a great crowd. It's meant to be fun, not too serious about itself, it's about having a good time in the sun with your friends.

ESQ: Is it hard to put on a festival? 

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JB: It's a total nightmare to be honest. Your putting a small town, one to cater for 100,000 people, into a park. You have two weeks to do that and a week to take it out. And you have 40,000 drunk revellers to manage for three days on the bounce. The results are astounding and a source of great pride but its a stressful job. A typical days planning is basically starting at 6 am, give yourself repetitive strain injury at your keyboard, burst a few blood vessels in your eyeballs and go home at ten.

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ESQ: When it's all going off, it's easy to forget Lovebox is in the middle of a city – let alone London. Was that the plan?

JB: Not really – quite the opposite, actually. We try and embrace London values. We have grown out of London musically and culturally and we try and live and breathe that. Physically, we create an oasis of fun in the middle that gives a feeling of detachment from the humdrum. But London is our soul and our heart.

ESQ: What are you particularly excited about for the 2016 event? 

JB: LCD Soundsystem. At Glasto they were mega, by all accounts. This one could be legendary.

ESQ: What makes a great headline act?  

JB: I suppose that depends on where you are, but for me in this order: amazing, original music, stage presence, effort and time spent on production and lighting, a genuine feeling for their audience. Most headline acts have this in spades otherwise they wouldn't be at that level anyway.

ESQ: Who's your name-to-watch for the rest of 2016? Give us a tip… 

JB: You absolutely have to check out Hot Blood. Couple of guys who have been DJ - ing for years but have a really interesting take on their own style of mixing up disco and deep house and they are blowing up..  

Lovebox takes place this weekend, July 16-17, Victoria Park, London. For tickets

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