Dylan Jones: Wander into a house party on Ibiza and the music you'll hear will probably be a Hed Kandi compilation

Talk Of The Town

Share
Related Topics

The Ministry of Sound's James Palumbo might be Britain's latest Worst Young Novelist (his self-published debut has received some withering reviews, to put it politely), but his purchase of Hed Kandi three years ago will probably turn out to be one of his shrewdest investments. Astonishingly successful, they are probably the best dance compilation on the market, appealing equally to the excitable teenage monster and equable fiftysomething creative. And in a few weeks' time they celebrate their 10th anniversary.

These days the Hed Kandi brand can be found in bars, clubs, on fragrance bottles, clothing, even chartered Boeing 757s. But it's the compilation albums that people hold dear, the albums you remember to rescue from the hire car when you're handing it back. And the chill-out series is the most popular of all. Wander into a house party on Ibiza, Sardinia or Majorca in the middle of the afternoon and the music you'll hear will probably be some sort of Hed Kandi compilation, the default soundtrack choice for every hungover, over-dressed host – seamless island beats that encourage you to kick the Birkys off and open another beer. Chill-out is a cathedral of bizarre juxtaposition, where camp ballads meet hard house on the dancefloor of subversity – and Hed Kandi are usually there to capture it.

One of the reasons for the brand's enormous success is the choice of illustrator used for the CD covers, which nearly always feature a cartoon beach babe, drawn slightly ironically, inferring glamour, sex and travel. The illustrator is Jason Brooks, a man whose career I like to think I was partially responsible for. I hired him 18 years ago to be the illustrator for the magazine I was editing. The illos were mainly of girls, and they didn't look too dissimilar to the plastic bootilicious Hed Kandi girls of today.

If you've yet to succumb to the Balearic delights of Hed Kandi, then I would advise you to do so. Far be it for me to encourage you to put any more money in James Palumbo's pocket, but he might need a little more just to offset the abuse he's received for writing such a bad book. Dylan Jones is the editor of 'GQ'

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Online Sales and Customer Services Executive

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An On-line Sales & Customer Ser...

Recruitment Genius: Accounts Assistant - Fixed Term Contract - 6 Months

£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the largest hospitality companies...

Recruitment Genius: Electricians - Fixed Wire Testing

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As a result of significant cont...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisor

£16575 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An excellent opportunity is ava...

Day In a Page

Read Next
A police officer carries a casualty to safety  

Tunisia attack proves that we cannot stop terrorists carrying out operations against Britons in Muslim countries

Robert Verkaik
Alan Titchmarsh MP?  

Alan Titchmarsh MP? His independent manifesto gets my vote

Jane Merrick
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map
Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

This was the year of 24-carat Golden Oldies
Paris Fashion Week

Paris Fashion Week

Thom Browne's scarecrows offer a rare beacon in commercial offerings
A year of the caliphate:

Isis, a year of the caliphate

Who can defeat the so-called 'Islamic State' – and how?
Marks and Spencer: Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?

Marks and Spencer

Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?
'We haven't invaded France': Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak

'We haven't invaded France'

Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak
Isis in Kobani: Why we ignore the worst of the massacres

Why do we ignore the worst of the massacres?

The West’s determination not to offend its Sunni allies helps Isis and puts us all at risk, says Patrick Cockburn
7/7 bombings 10 years on: Four emergency workers who saved lives recall the shocking day that 52 people were killed

Remembering 7/7 ten years on

Four emergency workers recall their memories of that day – and reveal how it's affected them ever since
Humans: Are the scientists developing robots in danger of replicating the hit Channel 4 drama?

They’re here to help

We want robots to do our drudge work, and to look enough like us for comfort. But are the scientists developing artificial intelligence in danger of replicating the TV drama Humans?
Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

'Heritage' is a loaded word in the Dixie, but the Charleston killings show how dangerous it is to cling to a deadly past, says Rupert Cornwell
What exactly does 'one' mean? Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue

What exactly does 'one' mean?

Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue