The DJ in question – DJ Fat Tony AKA Tony Marnach – was in jovial spirits as he welcomed his friends and the press at the screening of the short documentary about his life of addiction, wild partying and his subsequent redemption titled ‘The most famous DJ you’ve never heard of’.
If you’ve lived under a rock for the past three decades, DJ Fat Tony is the mover and shaker of the industry. It all started in 1980s, when Freddy Mercury offered Tony – a 16-years-old ‘arrogant’ teen – his first line of cocaine. Tony’s love for partying – several days at a time – led to now-famous DJ becoming a fixture of the London’s night scene.
His first DJ gig came as a challenge of sort. He ‘blagged’ a job as a doorman at one of London’s night clubs and took pleasure in ‘slagging off’ the music there. Until, one day, he was told to try to do it better himself. Tony brought two vinyl records to the gig. He played both sides… several times. “I felt like a music Jesus,” admits Tony in an honest and moving interview, “I could have had only a few tracks and do a twelve-hour set out of them”.
“The sex, drugs, alcohol addiction are all tied closely. They are all symptoms of one and the same thing,”
The best pal of Boy George, Kate Moss, George Michael and Naomi Campbell among others, Tony speaks openly about the good, the bad and the ugly. In a fifteen-minute long film, the famous DJ takes on a journey through his twenty-eight years of addiction – booze, drugs, sex – you name it. Seemingly exposed, he talks about being sexually abused at an age of nine and about losing his partner to AIDS in the early twenties.
Cleverly edited, the film takes the viewer through the swirl of emotions. The moments of laughter lead to contemplation just to pick you up again a few moments later with one of Tony’s off-the-cuff remarks. The film ends on a positive note – Tony was sober for 12 years now.
The ‘You’ve Never Heard of’ part is a bit too down-played as the DJ is regular at Donatella Versace’s fashion bashes, as well as at Beckham’s, Royal Family Members (Not Prince Andy’s) and a myriad of other rich and famous of this world.
DJ Fat Tony. Photo credit: Afshin Feiz
DJ Fat Tony About his documentary ‘The most famous DJ you’ve never heard of’
Tony admits having used the help of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. “The sex, drugs, alcohol addiction are all tied closely. They are all symptoms of one and the same thing,” admits the charismatic host of the night. Tony believes that his addiction was largely underpinned by the trauma of sexual abuse at an early age as well as by the loss of his partner in the early twenties. “That’s when partying stopped feeling fun and became a chore,” recollects Tony in the film.
The DJ adds: “There is a 12-step process that I had to go through that helps you to untangle those.” The 12-step process is set to help those with all kinds of addictions – more here: https://www.12step.org/.
In the film, Boy George recalls how DJ Fat Tony called him one morning and invited him to the Alcoholics Anonymous – the day that changed Boy George’s life. Speaking of what made Tony seek help, he admits, “Just something said by a friend at a certain point that suddenly has an impact on you and makes you want to change.” At that point, Tony was having sex up to eight times a day – while having a long-term partner – and weighed seven stone. “It was tiring,” he confirms in the film.
Talking about one’s addiction is not necessarily everyone’s cup of tea. So, I asked Tony how it feels like to be talking about it, so openly and without sugar-coating. “It feels empowering and I like talking about it because, hopefully, it can help others on their way to recovery”. In 2018, Tony admitted in an interview how he pulled his own teeth out with a screwdriver under the influence of ketamine.
Speaking about the upcoming plans, Donatella Versace Fashion Afterparty came up as well as the collaboration with the Ministry of Sound to host the first-ever sober party.
The film will be released via Mixmag’s Facebook and YouTube channels. The release is tomorrow, 27 February from midday.