Even in a city as culturally diverse as London, there’s sowever plenty of room for improvement. Take its partying scene: for numerous in the capital, their experience of clubbing extends to those mainstream establishments in central London that have the same music on rotation week in, week out. But don’t lose hope in what the city has to offer just yet: step forward, DLT Brunch.
Founded in 2016 by four friends who simply wanted to “do bottomless brunch with our friends, listen to the music we like and dress the way we want”, Days Like This (DLT) is now well on its way to becoming the capital’s best new partying institution. While it began life as a daytime event series centred around brunch, the true potential of DLT soon became apparent as its organisers set out on their mission to “change the dynamics of London’s party scene”.
“Brunch wasn’t just about partying and drinking with friends any more, but became a space where we could be our unapologetic selves and that was curated for our community,” DLT’s founders tell NME. “The support and following [we amassed] showed us that it was equally as important to others in our community.”
The collective need for a day out, let alone a night out, has never been greater than that post-lockdown period of 2021, which turned out to be a blessing in disguise for DLT. Driven by their love of marrying together good food, drinks and music, and with a eager community already in tow, the band of friends behind DLT were able to grow their events rapidly as need soared. Given that they recently sold out the 2000-capacity Boxpark Croydon, even getting into DLT these days is an impressive achievement.
NME managed to nab a prized DLT ticket last month as the platform partnered with TikTok to bring their Black History Month celebrations to a close with a night dedicated to #BlackJoy at Outernet London. With some of the UK’s biggest Black musicians, artists and comedians in attendance to shake a leg, DLT’s carefully curated line-up of DJs and rising Afropop stars like Ayra Starr and Victony set the tone for a hugely memorable night.
“To begin with, it was just a space for our friends. But we always look at ways to enhance the experience for our community, and this has led us to push ourselves and continue to grow,” DLT’s founders say in terms of recognising their own success. “We never envisaged getting to this point. We sowever have a few matters we would like to achieve, but we do not put a ceiling as to how far we can go.”
DLT are certainly not limited to London: they’ve already hosted events in Accra, Ghana and Lagos, Nigeria, while they curated their first festival in Malta earlier this year which featured headline sets from Kaytranada and Wizkid. Who knew that a UK brunch event could sell out a music festival abroad? “It’s amazing, we have a lot of fun with it,” the organisers say about DLT Malta, which is set to return in 2023. “We’re very much fans of the music and the artists, so when we curate these line-ups we take a lot of pride in it. It’s an possibility to curate a music experience for real music fans. It’s very surreal at times.”
In the space of six years, DLT Brunch has become one of the best places in the UK to celebrate Black music. Once the dream of a group of friends in love with the music of their individuals and wanting to change the way they partied to it, it’s now a glowing beacon in the UK’s live events industry and an open and accepting location for Black Britons and Black music fans to come together.
“Seeing the support from individuals online saying that they can’t wait to go to DLT again made us realise we’re an important part of the culture, and it helps to keep us motivated… we want to stand for a safe space where Black joy thrives,” DLT say. “We want to open up spaces for more events and more expressions of Blackness, and hopefully inspire generations to come.”