(Photo cred: Mordecai Nuccio)
Daddy Issues started as a small dance party in a sweaty basement club in East London in June 2016 and has now grown into a full on international queer brand. Daddy Issues parties take place all around the world, and they even now have a magazine, Daddy Issues
, which is on its second issue
In May of this year, Daddy Issues teamed up with AID’s non profit, Impulse Group
, and put on the ultimate pool party at a luxurious mansion in Beverly Hills. Everything was free, including entry, as long as party goers partook in the sexual health screening services offered prior to the event. Daddy Issues more than doubled Impulse’s previous record with over 380 people testing for a ticket to the event.
OUT caught up with one of the founders, Ollywood, to discuss how the international queer brand evolved into what it is today. (Scroll through to see photos from the most recent Daddy Issues’ party that took place at House of Yes in Brooklyn on July 29.)
OUT: How was the party developed from the beginning?
Ollywood: The party started off just for fun between me and Borja [the other co-founder of Daddy Issues]. He lives for music, and I love all the creative parts of nightlife. We didn’t expect people to be so responsive to what we were doing. Knowing who we are, what we are about, and what we stand for has definitely evolved since the beginning. Like a lot of things, it started off as just a place for me and Borja to play, but as we’ve grown, we’ve become super passionate about creating a safe space for all different types of queer kids who connect so well with our aesthetic, even if they haven’t ever been to a party before.
How does the party differ in each city?
We’ve done the party in so many different cities now including London, LA, Mexico, SF, NYC with Chicago, Atlanta and Toronto later this year. It’s super interesting to see how the party differs everywhere we go. I would say London and NYC are definitely the most dancey, where everyone is super into the music. LA is much more performance based; it’s where I bring in a lot of my favorite queens including the RuPaul girls.
What is it that people connect with which enables you to take the event all over the world?
We had no political agenda, nor a major goal in the beginning. Over the past two years, we’ve developed a very recognizable brand identity, which means we are able to take the party all over the world. Not only will people know of us and come, but they will also know what to expect and come prepared. It’s so awesome to go to NYC for the second time and have so many people turning up wearing pink or with glitter, or clothing with “daddy” on it. When you feel that the room is right there with you, and they are connecting to the party more than just showing up, it’s a great feeling.
So, what’s next for Daddy Issues?
We are going to debut in a lot of new cities next year - after the success of the Impulse Foundation collaborations, there will be a few more of them this year as well as a second huge pool party next summer.