“Leaving Mint Club for the final time still sickens me. It was the best years of my life” – Bobby O’Donnell

Ahead of the last ever Cocoon in the Park in Leeds we caught up with Leeds based and Mint Club resident Bobby O’Donnell. Bobby was very well and pumped for festival season, although the weather could be better so far (apart from Glastonbury it seems). We started the chat with discussing Mint Club. “To be honest it wasn’t somewhere I went a lot until it changed hands, in 2007. I remember noticing how special it was when I first went though, it must have only been 5/6 years old but still everyone was like, “You’ve got to go to the Mint Club” and you could tell how much they revered it. I’d just moved to Leeds; it was a really special time” he said.

Bobby played his first set there in 2008 after Frank Lorber, he recalled Frank had to leave and the club (as per usual) decided to stay open. “It was such a buzz and I couldn’t believe how good the dance-floor could get. I then got asked to be a resident from there” he explained. The residency taught him everything he now knows about DJing in a club. “I’d played in clubs for years before but this concerned the dance-floor more than others. When I first started there, it was sort of strange as we had about 3 hours plus, quite regularly to warm up and System was twice a month. I certainly got my head down with learning the room and how to warm up. It’s been such a gift in that sense and the set-up of The Mint Club I still think is the best I’ve played on” he said.

Sadly, the club has now closed its doors and Bobby recalled the very emotional last event – “as expected it was very emotional but it did take a while to sink in that it was over, truly a sad time. The actual night was incredible for music, for me Zip played very well and the end that Ricardo prepared was special. I also loved what Digby and Josh from The Ghost played. I literally, like most of us, lived there most of the weekend too. The final night was just fucking heart breaking and the music all night was top drawer. It was a fitting end but leaving the club for the final time still sickens me. It was the best years of my life.”

He moved onto saying how hard it is to think of a single moment which held the fondest memories for him. “There’s fucking tonnes of them” he said. However, he mentioned a few from the top of his head. “Some that stand out are Michael Mayer in December 2008, Ricardo Villalobos giving everyone a lesson in 2010. There are loads! More recently all of the Fuse boys playing on the birthday was special too. It’s literally impossible to pick out a fondest memory.”

It will be another sad moment at the last ever Cocoon the Park this year where Bobby has been playing early warm up sets as System resident along with Annie Errez. This year he’ll be playing the warm-up at 10am, keeping things nice and deep. “The afters are where I can get stuck in more. It’ll be with Annie Errez, Enzo Siragusa and Rich Nxt. We’re playing upstairs too, so it’ll be great to play more across the board” he said. He then went onto laughing about Sven’s brother and his dancing escapades which stands out as the weirdest thing he’s ever seen happen at Cocoon in the Park.

Away from the decks he also makes as much time as possible to get in the studio, with other commitments permitting. “I go there about 3 times a week and I’m definitely making what I want to now, as my older things were a bit too deep. It fitted the warm ups more but now I’m playing out more, I wanted to be able to test them initially and just ended up making warm-up type stuff. Now I listen back and just find them kind of boring. I’m in the best place I’ve ever been in with production though and I’m playing out loads of unreleased stuff” he explained. On top of production his label E-Numbers is taking up so much time now so he’s working on music mainly for that. “Next up is a split with Voigtmann, where we have an original each and we remix each other. It’s taken so long for this to come out but from then the releases will be regular. There’s then a project with me and Quixano, called The Molecule. He’s one of my best friends and we’ve played records together for years. Also, on the label I’ve got Alex Arnout doubt the original/remix swap with a new artist called Konnie and a project with me wonder-kid Keith Luke Gillott. I can’t wait to get all of this music out but after I will open it up to signing new artists and bring them together with already established artist. I’ve also got another release coming on a big label but I can’t say more than that.”

Catch Bobby O’Donnell at Sven Vath presents the last ever Cocoon in the Park – 13th July as Cocoon bow out on their 11th event at Temple Newsam, Leeds.

Event Info:

SATURDAY 13th JULY – 2019





We are happy and sad all at the same time. Happy to announce the line-up for number 11 but sad to tell you this will be the last ever Cocoon in the Park. Really. All good things must come to an end but we will be making sure this is the ending our unique festival deserves.

You know the score by now – one day, one night and one stage set in the glorious grounds of Temple Newsam so expect stunning sound, spectacular visuals and FX. For the 11th and last time Sven Vath will close the show and look out. Expect an emotional unmissable send off as Sven digs deep to celebrate the last 10 years. There will be fireworks, and much more.

To dance you towards a dramatic finale we bring you one of the biggest, if not the biggest, names of 2019. The sun might shine once again but whatever happens the staggeringly good PA along with Temple Newsam House will gaze down on you for the last time.

If you have never been to this amazing gig it is your last chance. If you have been supporting us over any or all of these last years we would love to see you at the final ever Cocoon in the Park. We hope you enjoyed the ride, made some friends and heard some ridiculously good music – we did.

About the Author

UK based former DJ and promoter, co-owner, director, writer & creative at Decoded Magazine. Studied at the University of Wolverhampton graduating in Graphic Communication & Typography (BA Hons). In house video editor and avid MMA follower with a keen ear for dark, twisted, hypnotic, tribal progressive house and techno.