Fri, Apr 15, 2016 - Page 10 News List

The Vinyl Word

By Marcus Aurelius  /  Contributing reporter

Daniel Black celebrates his birthday tonight, as well as the end of season one of his Level Up parties, tonight at Marquee.

Photo courtesy of Daniel Black

Daniel Black is a man about town. He chills out at Marquee early on in the evening and makes sure the hip-hop playlists are perfectly curated. He goes to Triangle later on, where there is a NT$300 drink, Damn Daniel, named after him. But who is Daniel Black, why does everyone know him and what does he do in Taipei?

Black has lived in Taiwan for almost three years, and for the most part felt underwhelmed by Taipei’s nightlife.

“All I wanted was a place just to kick it with good people, great drinks and some hip hop,” Black says. “So instead of complaining, I started working on creating it.”

A year ago, Black decided he wanted to find and connect people with the right energy. He started talking to smaller bars and restaurants and essentially doing pub crawls, busing between venues while focusing on people that he thought would be cool to hang out with. It helped a lot if they were big hip-hop aficionados, as Black is. Soon, Level Up parties were born.

Black doesn’t consider himself to be a promoter, but more of a party producer. He doesn’t hand out flyers in the hopes of getting a ton of people to the Level Up parties. Instead, he cultivates ideas that people haven’t thought about too much, like brunches, whisky, wine and sake tastings, or food pairings, and fills the seats according to venue size. He is also a big fan of renting buses and making sure all his guests hang out all night at the different venues he has chosen.

Tonight, Black celebrates his birthday at Marquee and officially ends his first season of Level Up parties. When pushed on what his most memorable event has been over the year, Black declines to answer specifically. Instead, he said, “I will say that every time an event is almost to a close I take a step back see how everyone is interacting and enjoying each other’s company. Those are usually the moments I remember the most. The ones where everyone is having a good time and that I was responsible for creating the space in which they could do that.”

■ Level Up presents End of Season One, tonight from 9pm to 2am at Marquee, 16-1 Xinyi Rd Sec 5, Taipei City (台北市信義路五段16-1號). Entrance is NT$500, which includes two drinks.


When people talk about dive bars, they think of small, hole-in-the-wall places that have a loyal customer base and bartenders with a lot of character. DV8, which is hosting its second birthday party tomorrow night, checks all those boxes. Owners Stephen Hepples and Gary O Connor have been serving strong drinks as well as telling stories of comedy, tragedy and fantasy to thirsty patrons for the past two years.

■ DV8’s 2-Year Anniversary is tomorrow from 6pm to 3am at DV8, 385 Fuxing South Rd, Sec 2, Taipei City (台北市復興南路二段385號). Admission is free.

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