To the rest of this half of the world, it’s officially Spring Time. But in LA, we just skip directly into summer and get right to it. If there’s one thing that tends to come to mind upon those rising temperatures, I think most people would say pool parties. The concept of a solid pool party is basically the epitome of summer fun, and something that we’re fortunate enough to have on a very regular basis. Awesome music, all your friends, very good looking girls, refreshing drinks; all on a rooftop setting…what more could you want on a sunny Saturday?
Out of all the different people hosting rooftop pool parties these days, you gotta hand it to the No Shirt No Shoes crew for holding it down. It seems that these local DJs, promoters, and all around rad dudes have mastered the true art of the pool party. It’s a special thing to consistently bring such a memorable vibe, and I figured it would be best to have one of the faces behind the event, Ian Macpherson, explain what the monthly rooftop “froth fest” is all about.
When and where did NSNS begin, and who was involved in the beginning? Who does the current team consist of?
It all started last year after Coachella. I had a pool party in the books, but I didn't want to continue to do the same old thing that we had done for the last couple years (don't get me wrong they were fun before). My friend Jake and I had Poolside's “Do You Believe” on heavy rotation at the time, so I hit them up to find out about bookings (I read that they only wanted to spin daytime pool parties for their first set) . . . and it ended up working out for their LA Debut DJ Set. The “No Shirt / No Shoes” moniker just seemed to be the right slogan for the type of event we wanted to do; laid-back, unpretentious, coastal and care-free.
The immediate team consists of Tropicool, Surf Ambassador Hendo, Andrew Potash of The Ampal Creative, and Bixel Boys (myself + Jake Kaye). We all grew up in California, in-fact Andrew, Hendo and I all are originally from La Jolla; Jake is a Venice rat and David can be found lurking around Manhattan beach.
What did you have in mind upon beginning the party series? Did the following and praise come as a surprise after the first few?
To be completely honest, I really didn't realize it was going to turn into what it did. I wanted to throw a beach party with my friends, get super buck to music that I enjoyed; cruising, worry-free dance music with the occasional curveball. The first song ever dropped at NSNS was Aquabats “Poolparty.” I just didn't want it to be a stuffy too-cool-to-get-loose kind of affair; I think our crew prevents that attitude. The overwhelming response I think is just LA agreeing with our message, we're in Southern fucking California…un-wind, kick-back and act like it.
NSNS is fortunate to have an un-pretentious family vibe. Not only do you guys bring in a great crowd, but also some amazing DJs. What kinds of sounds define the usual rooftop party?
The great thing is, all the residents would say something different; Tropicool would tell you that it's steel drums, sax's and synth; Hendo would probably say it’s disco jams with epic melodies and big vocal samples; and to me it’s some fun bouncy house tunes. Somehow they all blend together. We've been lucky to have everyone from The Black Lips to Salon Acapulco come jam out with us.
Why do you think that NSNS is becoming an essential staple in LA’s massive circuit of parties? What would you say sets it apart from the rest?
I think people are just getting tired of parties that are cool but not fun. You can throw the coolest party with the most famous people there, and that's awesome, but for this party in particular it's just about having as much fun as you can. We just really want to embrace this southern California vibe; those Saturdays where you don't have a care in the world, and everything can get put on-hold until Sunday (but expect to be hung over).
Looking forward to this weekend, what is this edition of the party all about?
This Saturday’s party is very special for a few reasons. The obvious one is that Oliver is blessing us with a set. Secondly, Junkyard will undergo the hazing process that Hendo went through last year to earn his “Rooftop Local” badge…essentially he's got to murder it at a prime timeslot, all while Tropicool tries to pump him full of as many brews and mojitos as he can. And lastly, The Ampal Creative is launching their Summer line of lids. I know that Andrew could speak on behalf of them much better; but they're just super roots hats constructed of all these amazing prints made here in LA.
Out of all the rooftop parties you’ve done in the past, do you have any favorite events or memorable moments in particular?
Our party with Salon Acapulco & Cut Snake was pretty special. We had been gone for a year and it was time to shake off the cobwebs and get to work. A half hour in there was a line around the corner and a raging dancefloor that went pretty much from 2pm till closing. We had people booking their own party busses from the Westside, people driving up from San Diego, and down from San Francisco. It meant a lot that people remembered what we were all about, and that there was a demand for the party that we were throwing. Every party seems to have some shining moment that we all talk about the next day.
For those who have yet to experience the party, what’s the ideal style of dress for a typical NSNS? What are some essential must-bring items or clothing that we should keep in mind?
- Tropo-cut-off shirts
- Ampal Hats
- CRAP sunnies
- biker patches
- bikinis, bikinis, bikinis.
What are your top 5 pool party jams?
Well thanks to Ian, you should be totally convinced at this point. NSNS takes place once again this Saturday, May 12th. You can click here to RSVP on Facebook, and here to fill out the form. Further details can be found within those links. It takes place at The Standard downtown and early arrival is a must.