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On the road with… Josh Wink

Higher state of
unconsciousness:
A similar view to the
one from Wink’s jungle
night in Ubud, Bali
PICTURE: ALAMY

■ The DJ talks about a rave on a sub, kipping in trees and how his conscience got the better of him in Miami

What is your favourite on-the-road moment?

I was flying to Ibiza in the late 1990s and one of the flight attendants recognised me — I had dreadlocks then. Turns out they were a huge fan and I woke up to my song Higher State Of Consciousness blasting out over the PA. I was pretty dazed and confused but it was really wild. Everyone threw their hands in the air and started raving in the aisle. Then we hit turbulence, which made it all the more exciting.

What’s your favourite city?

I love Tokyo’s museums, gardens and Buddhist temples, and Israel is incredible too. You don’t have to be religious to understand and respect how holy the place is. I’ve been playing in Tel Aviv since the 1990s and it’s an incredibly happy place.

What keeps you sane on the road?

I love being creative and performing, which is a form of therapy for me, but getting to shows involves many trials and tribulations — the taxis, the traffic, the missed or cancelled flights, the jet lag and so on. I used to have a lot of anxiety before a trip so I’ve started meditating.

Pride and joy: A Buddhist temple in Tokyo and the ‘incredibly happy’ Tel Aviv (below)

When have you been most frightened while travelling?

One of the first times I played in Amsterdam was on January 2, 1992, at a really raw underground party called Subtopia that was held in a retired submarine on the canal. I had to get on a boat and climb down a ladder through a small hatch to get into the sub, which just hit me with a whoosh of hot air thick with the smell of sweaty humans. I was packed in like a sardine with 200 other people. It was so hot, there was condensation dripping on to my records, and when everyone liked a song, their jumping tipped the boat. I remember getting crazy claustrophobic, a mixture of being elated about what I was doing and thinking what I was doing was really stupid.

What have you taken from a hotel room?

A bath mat from a hotel in Miami. It was made of natural material, extra big and cushioned, and I’d just moved into my new house so I stole it. But then my conscience got the better of me so I rang through and paid for it.

What is the best souvenir you’ve come home with?

I used to take a ‘do not disturb’ sign from every hotel I stayed in and write the date, the city and details about the party on them in the language of the country I was in. I kept it up for about two years before cutting it down to hotels in countries or cities I’d never been to before. I still have a box full but have given a lot away to friends.

What’s the worst meal you’ve had abroad?

I’m not one of those DJs who fills their Instagram with pictures of rare wagyu beef that’s been marinading in deep house music since 1999 but I’ll snap a picture of a vegan, organic meal that’s been made for me by a local.

Going local: Josh takes the odd foodie pic.

Where’s the best place you’ve spent the night?

Among the treetop canopies in the jungles of Ubud, Bali. I felt a mixture of fear about being suspended so high above the ground in such a basic structure, and about monkeys robbing me of all of my possessions in the night, but mostly I felt incredibly connected to nature and extremely fortunate.

Wink’s reissue of I Am Ready, ft Eats Everything, is out on Aug 31 via Ovum Recordings, ovumrecordings.com/artists/josh-wink