Liberty, freedom and entertainment at the Playboy Club London

July 09, 2014

“Life without liberty is like a body without spirit” – Kahill Gibran

Well said, Kahill. So hooray for liberty! Hooray for freedom! And hooray for, uh, entertainment! Independence Day just flew by and so to celebrate it, we put on a showcase of revelry themed around the past, present and future of America to help us ring in the 4th of July in true playboy style for a glamorous party at London’s renowned Playboy Club.

Even Uncle Sam himself was there to host an night all the way over in sunny ol’ London to celebrate his country's birthday – ensuring that guests were happy, the champagne was free flowing and there were fireworks aplenty. The metaphorical kind of course, because y'know, health and safety and non-fireproof clothing and all that.

Lighting up the night were rock’n’roll bands, cowgirl ribbon dancers, cabaret singers, cheerleaders - and Playboy Bunnies of course – making sure these glamorous Independence Day celebrations would be fresh in the minds of revellers for a long time to come – or well, at least 364 days. Read on for the full story with pictures and more.

 To kick off the party it was velvety voiced cabaret singer and Marilyn Monroe doppelganger Kitty La Roar who made her way through an introductory setlist with a sweetly smooth rendition of the Star Spangled Banner.

Her sultry timbre gave off echoes of a past era in the thralls of London’s Playboy Club, making it just that little bit harder to tell July 4th 2014 from July 4th 1954 – A perfect way to begin the night with a subtle vintage ambience.

 And to add a healthy lashing of rustic Americana we whipped up a new kind of act specifically for the evening. You could say it was a new twist on a traditional favourite.

Not just a regular ribbon dancer, our dance artist was decked out in cowboy style garb – and replacing the iconic lasso was her long, flowing ribbon able to entrance guests with a flurry of freestyling twirls, spins and pirouettes.

 Photo Credit: Paul James Griffiths

 And just like in those American sports you sometimes get on the TV when you can't get to sleep, A trio of cheerleaders gleefully danced their way through a couple sets and perfectly complemented the high-energy feeling of the night.

Marshalled by none other than our Uncle Sam compere, they certainly helped keep guests' attentions firmly on centre stage.

Photo Credit: Paul James GriffithsBringing the night into the devilish rock’n’roll era of the 60s were foot-stomping party band The Jukebox Jets alongside self styled ‘mockney pop’ musical trio The Watling Street band who cast aside their East London heritage to play a vibrant set inflected with a helping of hillbilly twang.

Hawaiian shirted, telecaster equipped and cowboy booted (presumably), The Jukebox Jets began the descent into heavier territory with an impressive array of covers spanning the best of US rock'n'roll.

Photo Credit: Paul James Griffiths

 Both bands played raucous sets, diving into a sea of covers of US drenched pop, rock and roll to the ever-increasingly hyped crowd. And it goes without saying that Watling Street’s* lead singer certainly enjoyed the opportunity to play at the racy London venue.

*Playboy Bunnies not included when booking The Watling Street Band

 Following the highly charged rock’n’roll sets of The Jukebox Jets and The Watling Street Band. Seweuse carried the night into a little bit more of a contemporary atmosphere with her soulfully saccharine covers of modern pop hits from artists like Beyonce and Rihanna. Sparkling with sequin studded red-hot dress, it's fair to say she wouldn't look out of place in any era.

Once the event was a little more, shall we say, up to date, Seweuse and her backing band led the way for the resident Playboy Club London DJs to bring the party into modern territory and the clocks firmly past midnight. Happy belated Independence Day ‘murica.

Photos via Paul Griffiths Photography

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By Stephen Warr