- Format: Hardcover
- ISBN: 978-1-5261-6690-6
- Pages: 264
- Price: £20.00
- Published Date: January 2024
In Welcome to the club, Manchester legend DJ Paulette shares the highs, lows and lessons of a thirty-year music career, with help from some famous friends.
One of the Haçienda's first female DJs, Paulette has scaled the heights of the music industry, playing to crowds of thousands all around the world, and descended to the lows of being unceremoniously benched by COVID-19, with no chance of furlough and little support from the government. Here she tells her story, offering a remarkable view of the music industry from a Black woman's perspective. Behind the core values of peace, love, unity and respect, dance music is a world of exclusion, misogyny, racism and classism. But, as Paulette reveals, it is also a space bursting at the seams with powerful women.
Part personal account, part call to arms, Welcome to the club exposes the exclusivity of the music industry while seeking to do justice to the often invisible women who keep the beat going.
'Imagine the DJ is taking notes while everyone in the club is dancing. Welcome to the club is exactly that, notes of a DJ - the irrepressible sunlight of DJ Paulette. A fascinating insight into the music business by a northern Black woman.'
Lemn Sissay, author of My Name Is Why
'Icon. Trailblazer. Activist. Warrior. DJ Paulette has led the way for Black women and women everywhere in a global music industry riddled with racism and misogyny. She has blown apart the myths. This is a magnificent book. A manifesto for our times and a rallying call for the future.'
Maxine Peake, actress and activist
'Paulette continues to light the way for others, building in relevance and significance, wowing crowds, annihilating dancefloors. I would recommend Welcome to the club as an essential read for anyone and everyone. I thoroughly enjoyed it.'
Craig Charles, actor, comedian, DJ, television and radio presenter
'Paulette is someone I've always respected, admired and been inspired by. This book is beautifully written, incisive, dry, witty and real - true Mancunian honesty. What an adventure and a truly fascinating life.'
Rowetta, member of the Happy Mondays
'Paulette is a pioneer, a ground-breaker, a trailblazer and never afraid to hold a mirror up to the world to show that there is still so much more to do. A self-assured shimmy of a book that instantly transports you to the dancefloor and beyond. I love it!'
Arielle Free, BBC Radio 1 presenter
'DJ Paulette's Welcome to the club is a testament to her ability to witness the dancefloor while blending memorable anecdotes that bring new life to the UK underground music scene. More than her fabulous landing in Paris, where she built a new world of listeners around her name and sound, it's the fact that Paulette turns notable moments in her thirty-year career into a close listening experience. There's a musical quality to this book that sounds like what Black women DJs have tried to tell the world - our unique experiences turn any party into a lively classroom. Paulette leaves curious students waiting for the next chapter so they can hear it like a song.'
Lynnée Denise, DJ, writer and interdisciplinary artist
'When I first met Paulette, back in that pivotal space of early 1990s Manchester, I don't think any of us really understood what we were getting out of nightlife beyond raw enjoyment. Now we've had a chance to re-evaluate those codes, to understand how much they meant in forming us as people. This book explains why nightlife matters, beamed in directly from a vanguard position behind the DJ booth. Paulette understands the philosophy of the nightclub because she was there when it was at its very best.'
Paul Flynn, author of Good As You: 30 Years of Gay Britain
'I arrived in 1990s Manchester, found a place to live and a job then got dragged up, went clubbing and there was DJ Paulette on the decks. She made being an outsider look hot, and I wanted in. Her energy and music were the soundtrack to my queer gender-bending dance floor years. Decades on I still want to be in her club. If music and clubbing played an important part in your life, then so will this book.'
Kate O'Donnell, Artistic Director of Trans Creative
'I now realise the weight of the obstacles and challenges Paulette overcame, her fortitude to compete in male-dominated arenas, the racism she undoubtedly encountered. Her mettle and contribution have clearly opened doors for the diversity and equality we strive for today.'
Simon Dunmore, DJ and Founder of Defected Records & Glitterbox
'With fierce resilience and passion, DJ Paulette's travels through clubland reveal her personal triumphs over life's adversities. A book filled with music and love, positivity and enthusiasm. '
Princess Julia, DJ, model and music writer
'Any list of the pioneers of the Manchester club scene, and the international scene it so heavily influenced, is not complete without the name of DJ Paulette. Ours is a city that celebrates those who challenge elites, break down barriers and open doors for others to walk through. Paulette has done all of those things and more and that is why we are so proud of her.'
Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester
'A thrilling ride around the world through the lens of a Black female DJ. Covering the good, the bad and the ugly, DJ Paulette tells it like it is. There are few visible Black female role models in the music industry and DJ Paulette is a passionate advocate for racial, gender and LGBTQ+ equality, but most of all she's a legendary DJ. If you want a fresh, original voice on electronic dance music, culture, politics and more, this is the book for you!'
John Shortell, Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, The Musicians' Union
'A refreshingly honest and positive queer voice. DJ Paulette's memoirs are everything that club culture needs at the moment: Written with warmth and passion, this book continues the trend of female professionals telling their stories - the good and the bad ones - so that we learn how clubs can once again become the places of Peace, Love, Unity and Respect.'
Dr Beate Peter, The Lapsed Clubber Project
'A true original of the UK club scene, Paulette has experienced the highs and lows of dance music culture, and this heartfelt and insightful book tells the story of what she saw and learned with her distinctive style, warmth and wicked wit.'
Matthew Collin, author of Rave On and Altered State
'DJ Paulette has written a story that needed to be told, and as only she could tell it. Rich with experience and careful research, Welcome to the club is a must-read for anyone interested in house music, DJing and the power of life narrative.'
Audrey Golden, author of I Thought I Heard You Speak
'Welcome to the club is joyful, funny and furious. DJ Paulette's essential read doubles up as an alternative history of dance music, told from the middle of the dancefloor. It's a sparkling and generous ride through international high times and low moments, documenting music industry racism, sexism and homophobia with fabulous clarity. This pioneering DJ and musical instigator has written a full-bodied celebration of the myriad ways music can save your life - and can also make your life. '
Emma Warren, author of Dance Your Way Home
'This book is a timely reminder that history or herstory is not written yet and never over. It gives a valuable and personal account of the development of DJing as a professional music career and its beginnings in the LGBTQ community in Manchester at the start of the 1990s. At moments it is a disturbing and hard read, but read it one must. This is a much needed and powerful account for anybody interested in the music business and the development of dance music internationally.'
Sally Anne Gross, music industry practitioner and academic
Foreword by Annie Mac
Introduction: welcome to the club (Belleville or bust)
1 Finders keepers: in the beginning
2 London to Paris: Eurostar
3 Bad behaviour: shit shags and crap hotels
4 FAQs (female asked questions)
5 How to kill a DJ
6 Sane as it ever was
7 Lifetime VIP: a manifesto
DJ Paulette is an award-winning DJ whose thirty-year career has seen her play some of the world's greatest parties, from Manchester's Haçienda to Ibiza Rocks and the Ministry of Sound