Disco Dan Boogies during Lockdown

In the first lockdown, Dan Hunter performed 30 discos on facebook reaching thousands of viewers around the world. And now he’s starting again for Lockdown 3. But what inspired him to start in the first place?

Where do you live and what is your normal job?

I am 37 years old, born and raised in Hungerford and I’m the manager and mechanic of Hungerford Service Centre, my family’s business.

What inspired you to do live online disco?

I’m have always been a keen amateur musician and entertainer from an early age, having self taught guitar, drums, keyboard, trumpet and formed several local bands over the years (but nothing professional as yet). I’m not a DJ, I just love music, dancing and making people smile. I have minimal equipment, making do with props about the home, or left on my doorstep by generous neighbours, and even my mechanic’s bonnet light!

How do people join in?

At 8pm on Friday evenings on my Disco Dan facebook page I post a link to my PlayDJ platform where people can watch my disco videos (because facebook itself won’t allows you to play copyrighted music).

Are you nervous before you go live each night?

Yes I am very, very nervous!  Although it might not be apparent, I do suffer with anxiety and depression and the past year has presented me with the biggest mental health challenge I’ve had to face. I have also had severe arthritis from an early age which requires me to self-medicate with weekly injections and heaps of daily medication. Although it can be tough to cope at times, my pleasure in life comes from making other people happy, which takes my mind off my own problems and helps keep me focused.

Are you self-isolating alone?

No I’m lucky to have supportive family at home with me. They are camera-shy but they boogie along with me every evening in other rooms in the house.

Have you been surprised by the reaction to the disco videos?

It started as a bit of fun for family and friends but quickly spread to the wider community and I’m totally overwhelmed from the reaction these videos have received, from different people all over the world, as far as America, New Zealand, Africa, France, Sweden and Australia.

After the first video, I had so many friend requests on my personal Facebook account that I had to set up the ‘Disco Dan’ page, which has increased in numbers sooooo fast! I want to help all the isolated people at home or away and those working hard on our front lines, singing and dancing along with me, put smiles on faces, and keeping fit at the same time.

I do try to keep fit and healthy anyway to help me combat my arthritis and improve mental well-being, but this is definitely upping my fitness levels and hopefully everyone else is joining in with me.

How long will you continue and how many hours of music do you have?

As long as people keep the requests coming in and watching, I’ll continue and as long as I’m physically able to. I watch the videos afterwards to see the comments and this just gives me more motivation to continue the next night.

You don’t just dance do you? You did some incredible fundraising in Lockdown 1.

Yes I am so grateful to everyone who helped me smash my target to raise money for local Corona Heros who went above and beyond during lockdown and deserve some recognition and a bit of a treat. We raised £3,510!

If anyone wants to contact Dan who is not on facebook please email him on a242dan@hotmail.co.uk.

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