10 years ago Jacky Croad decided to move her private pilates studio from London to Ibiza, the white island was the perfect home for her and her young family. Hugely influenced by music her whole life, Jacky had sought out a compilation that reflected her own tastes; music that lifted the soul, a soundtrack for day or night, an album as perfect for getting together with friends as it was for her private classes. When she could not find what she was looking for she embarked on her own musical journey, creating unique individual tracks that combined her favourite elements of Latin Jazz, Balearic beats and classic chillout which would ultimately be played side by side on her new ‘Ibiza Chilled’ compilation. DMCWORLD checks in for the lowdown on this beautiful new long player…
Photo by Nigel Edgecombe
Jacky a huge welcome to DMCWORLD. What are your earliest memories of music growing up, who were some of the artists that have stayed with you on your life journey?
My first memories of music were listening to my dad’s favourites on long car journeys where I would be singing along – artists such as The Beach Boys, Queen, Dr Hook and Roy Orbison immediately spring to mind and bring back wonderful memories. But my whole family are musical so every Christmas, Easter and family get-together (which was very often!) would involve jamming, getting the percussion instruments out and everyone just sitting around the piano or sofa just playing music and dancing to jazz, swing and soul. It was a bit of a mad house really and I just remember music was always around me, which I now realise played a huge part in my music.
Ibiza has been your home for many years but you have also lived in such fabulous cities as Tokyo and Hong Kong along the way. You were also lucky to have lived in Soho during the 80s and 90s when London was the coolest city on the planet. What was your career back then?
Cliché as it sounds, I used to be a model and then studied to become a fashion makeup artist. Living in Soho was the perfect location for everything to do with fashion…and yes, I had an absolute blast!
What are your some of your favourite moments of that time? Who were some of the standout characters and venues you loved hanging out with/at?
Oh dear. I probably shouldn’t mention some of my hangouts, but my nights were spent dancing away in all the underground bars and clubs; Ronnie Scott’s, SoHo House and of course The Groucho. Living in Soho was just magical, I’ve never met so many characters in my life. I used to hang out with such a diverse set of people so it’s hard to mention names., but it was the most amazing experience and I remember everyone always getting cabs home at the end of the night whereas I would walk home and be in bed in 5 minutes…big result.
Why did you eventually choose Ibiza as your home, what was it about the White Island that made you happy to raise a family in?
What isn’t to love about this island, I really do mean it when I say I can’t fault it. I’ve been coming to Ibiza since I was 4, my mother loved it here and still does. My husband worked in the City and wanted to retire as he was exhausted. We were fed up with the UK so we thought let’s give Ibiza a try as it was safe and we wanted a healthy lifestyle – and of course the sunshine. We haven’t looked back.
You are recognised as the leading Pilates instructor on the island. The whole wellness side of things has engulfed Ibiza in recent years and many now see the island as a place of recovery and rebirth rather than rave. How do you see Ibiza in the future, do you think the wellness and food industries will overtake music and clubbing – is being healthy the new cool?
Ha I like this question! And yes, I do think healthy is the new cool. Only because health knowledge has grown so much over the years and now everyone is realising that you can do both….party and still be healthy. But instead of 80/20 with the higher percent being partying, now its reversed. People are realising the importance of being healthy and I think Ibiza will become a hub for health, but with that mix of clubbing too which is why it’s so unique. I think we are all feeling slightly guilty about our partying when we were younger and now we are getting older, you have to look after yourself. Food is vital and the island is full of amazing chefs and eateries. And, I can’t believe I’ve turned into a vegan!
This month sees you release your brand new Ibiza Chilled album, what was the idea behind it?
I have been in love with the Balearic beat for so many years and teaching Pilates made me listen to so much chilled music – but I was always frustrated with the choice, the quality and most music had the wrong beat with hardly anything authentic to Ibiza. One afternoon my husband thought he had lost my playlist (which I had made over 10 years) and I was about to kill him when I suddenly jumped off the sofa and said ‘sod it, I’m making my own music!’. So that’s how Ibiza Chilled came along. I had for a long, long time dreamed of making my own music but the timing had never been right…and suddenly a gap opened for me.
Tell us about the production process, you obviously had a firm idea in your head how you wanted the album to sound – how did you make that happen in the studio?
I was 100% certain what I wanted – and I didn’t sway from that. I wanted the original Balearic beat that I had fallen in love with so many years ago mixed with some latin jazz and interesting melodies. I spent 10 months sitting every single night with headphones on pretending I could hear my kids, when instead I was sampling my music. Very funny looking back actually, soundproof headphones have been the best investment for my music!
Are there any modern day artists you drew influence from for the album?
I hate to say this but I don’t really listen to modern music. Obviously the kids listen all the time and every now and then I say ‘oh that’s a good song’, but not enough to influence anything. I am proper old skool which I find hard to beat. I think good quality chilled music is extremely difficult to find, hence why I made my own.
The album arrives in the middle of a global pandemic and suddenly the soothing sounds of Ibiza Chilled is the perfect soundtrack to what looks a kick back and easy summer! How do you hope Ibiza will benefit from this enforced lockdown and different ways of tourism?
Of course this pandemic is going to continue to cause mayhem but there is a lot of good that has already come out of it. I have to say from a resident’s point of view, it’s the best thing that could happen to this island. Of course I’m not talking about the horrendous side of this pandemic, I’m talking about the positive side that Ibiza finally has a chance to recover; from the sea, nature and wildlife to everyone that lives here. I also think the island will benefit hugely after this, people have missed Ibiza so next summer I guess will be huge.
Where are some of your favourite places to chill in Ibiza?
Ooh so many places…I love chilling on my paddle board by my secret cove in San Miguel ….Cala Xuclar beach…..Hostel La Torre…..and my roof terrace!
Health and fitness aside, if Jacky Croad was going to have a crazy night out in Ibiza in normal times, what club would you head to and what DJ would you want to see?
I go clubbing once a year and it takes me a year to recover. I prefer smaller clubs and bars like little rooms in Pacha or Pikes, music is absolutely essential for me to the extent I will leave if the music isn’t right as it seriously sets my mood. DJs I can rely on are Black Coffee, Scott Grey and Graham Sahara. I also love going to small bars in Ibiza Town, one of my current faves is of course Malanga Cafe where great DJs end up doing relaxed sessions…I am always the last one on the dancefloor!
And finally, why do you think there has been a revival of downtempo/chilled music?
During lockdown people haven’t been blaring out heavy 4/4 music…they have either been working from home or been indoors for the majority of the time. They have needed that feel good but relaxing music to fit in with their new lifestyle. I am hoping people start appreciating chilled music again as I feel it has been slightly forgotten about. We all need some chilled music at this moment…
You can hear the ‘Ibiza Chilled’ compilation onYoutubefor over an hour of continuous play or discover it onSPOTIFYandApple Music.