Todd Terry – 24 hours in Ibiza

Seminal US house DJ Todd Terry remembers first hearing the buzz about Ibiza over 20 years ago. “Everybody was talking about it: Ibiza, Ibiza, Ibiza!” It was a Ministry of Sound gig at Eden circa 1998 that first got him on a plane to the magical Mediterranean island, and he’s been returning multiple times per year ever since.

“I was expecting absolute craziness, and when I got here it was absolute craziness,” laughs the Grammy Award winning producer known as ‘Todd the God’ at his earliest memories of the island. “But really, it was glorious, going to Café del Mar, the sunsets, the whole thing.” Todd says he’s seen Ibiza change a lot since then, comparing the island’s expansion to that of New York transcending into Brooklyn.

2016 sees Todd hold residencies with Glitterbox at Space Ibiza in addition to The Redlight at Sankeys Ibiza, plus guest slots at Pacha. “The last three years have been humungous for me in Ibiza!” he says, pondering the idea of using the island as a summer base in the future. Having recently re-launched his 90s label Freeze Records to much fanfare, he plans to launch his own Freeze party at ADE, with the potential to expand into Ibiza in 2017.

“ADE is full of DJs vibing off each other, so it’s a good place to start, but here in Ibiza it’s more of a vacation feel,” he explains. “Everything is sporadic, spontaneous, random and spread out here – we’ll catch up next week, let’s go to dinner over there, see this person, that person. It’s cool, but hard to organise anything. But you can’t ever really beat it,” he says knowingly.

Main photo by Natalie Beth Harris

How do you feel as you step off the plane onto the tarmac?
Happy I’m alive! Truthfully, after 30 years, I still can’t get used to flying, and the Ibiza flight can sometimes be a little rough coming in with the tropical weather. But you know you’re going to have a good time, that’s always in your mind so you vibe on that instead…

Does Ibiza feel like work or holiday to you?
It’s pretty holiday-ish, I’ll give it that! I don’t ever feel stressed out when I’m here. I stay in hotels or villas and I like to be pampered, have everything clean and perfect. The way I’ve been doing Ibiza lately is to come in three days before the gig and then leave three days after, so there’s space around it. It’s not boom, boom, boom!

What is your favourite part of the island?
San Antonio has some really interesting spots believe it or not, I think it’s pretty cool.

Who do you mostly spend time with on the island?
I generally hang with different DJs, Ibiza is a lot of fun when you have a bunch of friends around. I have my crew: DJ Sneak, Roland Clark, Kenny Dope Gonzalez, Ant La Rock, Junior Sanchez, Arthur Baker, The Martinez Brothers – we goof around on each other a lot.

What’s your ultimate Ibiza track?
Over the last five years, Dennis Ferrer’s Hey Hey always stuck out as having that Ibiza feeling, but back in the day, it was Afro Medusa’s Pasilda and Tim Deluxe’s It Just Won’t Do. That was the vibe – you can sing those to anyone and they’ll think of Ibiza.

What is your best Ibiza memory?
[Laughs] Nothing I can tell you!

Defected presents House Masters by Todd Terry is out now – click here to download on iTunes.

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You have 24 hours on the island – tell us your favourite places to…


I like having a good breakfast, real eggs, proper toast. The Royal Plaza Hotel in Ibiza town is really good for that and Passion Cafe too.


Again I love Passion, it’s just a bit further down the block from Pacha. Café Mambo is a good lunch spot too, and I like Es Nautic, a seafood restaurant by the water in San Antonio.


DJ Sneak’s house! A barbeque there is my perfect dinner. And of course, there’s Balafia, we always go there. My friends Junior Sanchez and Arthur Baker are called ‘The Balafia Brothers’ and they always con me into going there so I guess now it’s my thing too.


Me? Dancing? [Laughs] When I’m not DJing, Sankeys has some pretty cool vibes going on.


Also Sankeys, It has that gritty vibe and I like vibing with the kids, who are all holding up their mobile phones and asking me to play stuff like Black Riot when I’m playing my new tracks! I play a different role, I’m in a different mindset with each club. Glitterbox at Space has a really good crowd, they’re always going for it and at the end, it’s like they can’t believe it’s over!


Pikes at Ibiza Rocks House is really interesting on a low-key, chilling kind of party vibe every now and then. And DC10 – I go there a lot. The Paradise party is really good and Circoloco always has something going on, someone to see. Like Dubfire, The Martinez Brothers. HYTE is also a good party, as far as a DJ hanging out listening to another DJ, Loco Dice is great.


I don’t really go to the beach, I think my tan is pretty good! And I can’t swim to this day, even though I grew up in Brighton Beach…


I like Hotel Ocean Drive and the Marina area back there is nice to chill. You can get good food, relax, go for a walk, whatever you need. I do appreciate that over there.

Iconic Ibiza grill restaurant Balafia

Slick San Antonio restaurant Es Nautic

The Space Ibiza terrace

Marina Botafoch hotel Ocean Drive

Todd Terry plays Glitterbox at Space on July 15, September 2 and September 23