LEE PENNINGTON is one of the UKs dance music grafters, consistently contributing to the scene in the north with integrity, never compromising on quality and giving up and coming talent a chance to shine alongside his own impressive DJ schedule and production career.

As one of the long term residents of Ibiza’s infamous Zoo Project, Lee is also the founder of Teesside party riffraff who are celebrating their 20th anniversary this Saturday 25th November in Middlesbrough with James Zabiela and Rui Da Silva leading the charge with a huge line up for the special occasion.


Lee has worked with Rui Da Silva, Xpress 2, Lee Walker and many more on music projects but his biggest was working in the studio to produce a record for DJ Alfredo which had great success. His productions often find themselves in the Beatport top tens and his music is always played by the top jocks such as Sasha, Digweed, Carola… The list goes on.

Lee Pennington rocking The Zoo Project, Ibiza

Lee has played back to back sets with the aforementioned as well as Mr C, Tale Of Us, Hector, Terry Francis, Craig Richards, Federico Grazzini, Defex, Giles Smith, Denney, Sorley, Milou, Funk E, Frank Storm and many others not to mention the fact he has practically warmed up for nearly everybody over his extensive career. In Ibiza you will have no doubt danced to Lee’s chugging sets in the Sealpit of Zoo Project or you may have caught him on his travels around the world at Ministry of Sound, Egg (UK), Jika Jika(Northern Ireland), Shindig, Watergate (Berlin), Privilege, Es Paradis, Ellui (South Korea), Atlantis (Dubai) just to name a few.

We caught up with Lee this week for a quick chat about how riffraff came about it in the first place two decades ago, how he feels about the magnificent 20 year milestone and the amazing line up for Saturday’s party, plus he has kindly recorded an exclusive mix for the 119th instalment of The Night Bazaar Sessions featuring music that has set the riffraff main room off over the last 20 years. You can listen to the mix above and check the track list out for the mix at the end of the chat below.

How does it feel reaching the 20 year milestone for riffraff?

It doesn’t feel too bad for something that was meant to be a one off event to celebrate my first record release on Source Of Gravity Records. I can look back on a very fond 20 years where I have had some of the best times and I really hope given the people of Teesside some of their best ever times.

Can you tell us about where it all started?

It started when myself and a few of my mates were sick of seeing the same DJ’s being booked in Middlesbrough, so we thought we would do our own thing. It started in Spensleys which is a venue in Middlesbrough. This venue is now one of Teessides hot spot restaurants, but they have allowed us to host the 20th birthday afterparty in there.


Talk us through the line up which features James Zabiela and Rui Da Silva

The line up is mainly of local talent from DJ’s to bands and live electronic acts. We have six rooms to fill and over 40 acts playing over twelve hours. We brought Rui back because he is a firm favourote of the riffraff crowd, he has played on a boat party with us, in Malta with us and many other places BUT he was the DJ on one of riffraffs most infamous nights that ended up on national news…. lets not talk about that here though. Then of course we have got James Zabiela because our fans have stated he was the most technical DJ they have ever seen at rffraff in the twenty year history.

Thank you for recording an exclusive mix for The Night Bazaar Sessions which our readers can listen to above (and below!). Can you talk us through what we can expect to hear?

The recorded mix is basically a chunk of tracks from my “riffraff main room favourites” folder. Over the years certain tracks have played at riffraff and stood the test of time, these tracks go into that folder. It makes perfect sense to play these. They are all edits of mine but other peoples records, well some are actually my unreleased productions, the two opening tracks are finally being released on Witty tunes after I just kept hold of them for years and they still do the damage on the floor.

Lee Pennington – riffraff Main Room Favourites 20 Year Anniversary Mix – TRACKLIST

Lee Pennington Feat Trix MC – Sealpit vibes – Forthcoming on Witty Tunes

Lee Pennington – Respect The Jack – Forthcoming on Witty Tunes

Lee Pennington – Woolys Got bead On – Unreleased

Lee Pennington – PUll U ThrU – Unreleased

Todd Terry – Bounce to The Beat – Freeze Records (Pennington Edit)

Venti – Pump This – Paskal Daze Remix – Griffin Town Records

Kenny Dope – The Bomb – One for The People Rework

Lee Pennington – Bass Power Unreleased

Underworld & Leftfield – Rez Mashup – Nick Robson Edit

OTON – Cama Brainbug – Nightmare – Lee Pennington Manbear Edit

Energy 52 – Cafe Del Mar – Three in One Remix – Lee Pennington Acid Jam Edit

Lee Pennington – The Great Dictator – Unreleased

Fatima Yamaha – What’s a Girl To Do – Lee Pennington re-edit

Three Drives On a Vinyl – Greece 2000 – Lee Pennington edit

ITO & Star – Sudoku Kid – Lee Pennington Edit

Lee Pennington – Stoned – Unreleased

Hans Burns – Good shot – Pennington & Gow rework

Section 75 feat Penny – Locked Heart – Source Of Gravity Records

Kate Bush- Running up that Hill – Amine Edge & Dance remix

Lee Pennington rework King Unique – Sugar High – Defected