DJ Fila spins again in Singapore

He had said he would not play at Zouk any more after being asked to let Malaysian PM Najib Razak's son take over the decks

DJ Fila performed at Millian club at St James Power Station early Saturday morning.
DJ Fila performed at Millian club at St James Power Station early Saturday morning.ST PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG

Barely two months after vowing that he would never play at Zouk again, DJ Fila, 35, was back in Singapore, spinning at a different club early Saturday morning.

Earlier this year, on March 6 at Zouk, he had been asked to stop playing after his scheduled set time, which was from 1.30am to 3.30am, to let Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak's son, Norashman, take over.

DJ Fila declined to do so, but Zouk's booking manager returned with the same request after 15 minutes. That was when he addressed the crowd, saying that he would not "play for Zouk any f***ing more" and that he would see them "somewhere in the future".

Speaking to The Straits Times before his set at Millian club at St James Power Station, DJ Fila, whose real name is Fadi Wassef Naguib, says that his initial surprise morphed into anger when he was asked to stop playing the second time, saying that he felt "disrespected".

He says: "For me, what happened last time was not acceptable for our fans - they were there to see me and listen to my and Aly's music."

But he is not one to be angry for long and he was "fine" after he went back to the hotel and slept.

He is one half of Egyptian trance duo Aly & Fila. He started his set at Millian at 1.15am last Saturday and played till the club's closing time of 5.30am, despite being scheduled to end at 4am.

He had previously played at Zouk a number of times and it is common for guest DJs at the club to play beyond their scheduled set times. He adds that Aly laughed upon hearing the news and was "so surprised that it even happened".

The duo's manager, Mr Stuart Roberts, was supportive of DJ Fila's decision not to play at Zouk in the future, saying that he did the correct thing.

Zouk apologised to the DJ after the incident and he requested a public apology to him, Aly and the fans on the club's social media accounts.

He says: "They promised us that they would do it, but they didn't."

Zouk declined to comment.

DJ Fila usually comes to Singapore once a year, but said that it "made sense to stop by" again so soon after his Zouk performance, as he was playing in Macau and Guangzhou, China, over the weekend.

This time, he was brought in by promotions and productions company Mammoth Collaborative, after he expressed interest to them in coming here to play.

DJ Fila's fans are just happy that he is back to perform in Singapore, regardless of the venue. The DJ was greeted with enthusiastic cheers from the crowd when he took to the decks at Millian.

Mr Huang Jia Wei, 29, an underwriter in an insurance company, says that he was there "just for DJ Fila".

"I'm definitely happy that he's back so soon and I can enjoy his set without having to go all the way to Egypt."

Mr Clifton Lee, 23, a regular in the Republic of Singapore Navy, agrees. He says: "I'm happy he's back. I don't really care where he plays. Wherever he goes, I go."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 02, 2016, with the headline 'DJ Fila spins again in Singapore'. Print Edition | Subscribe