|This biographical article relies too much on references to primary sources. (April 2013)|
Harsh attended the London College of Fashion. It was while at University that he first adopted the persona of Jodie Harsh to make money through nightclub jobs.
Rise to Fame
Originally wanting to become a journalist, a career in promotion was kicked off after a much hyped birthday event at the Soho Revue Bar, attended by Alexander McQueen, Kate Moss, Amy Winehouse and Boy George, leading to the management requesting Harsh start his own club night Circus. This came after four years working in clubs such as The End in London and Space in Ibiza. In late 2010, Harsh started an infamous weekday club nights called "Room Service". The brand became a success and runs weekly in London and New York, as well as occasionally in Amsterdam, Tel Aviv, Moscow, Sydney, Paris and Ibiza.
Producer and Remix Work
Jodie Harsh is an acclaimed producer with remixes for many big name artists under her belt. Alongside singles 'Frequency' and 'Mandolin' on the Room Service label, Jodie released a dance EP featuring vocals from Melanie C in 2012. 'The Night' gained monumental success over the globe, reaching number 1 in Spain and hitting Top 10 charts across Europe and South America. Her remix work includes Cher's 'Woman's World', Madonna's 'Ray of Light', Justin Timberlake's 'Suit and Tie', Cazwell feat. Luciana 'Guess What', Sophie Ellis Bextor's 'Bittersweet', Rye Rye's 'DNA', Ariana and The Rose's 'Heartbeats' and Jody Watley's 'Nightlife'. In 2014 Jodie's remixes of Beyoncé's 'Pretty Hurts' and 'Blow' ranked number 1 in the US dance charts.
Jodie Harsh is due to release an EP in early 2015, but guest vocals or a label have not yet been announced.
Over the years Harsh has become established as a prominent DJ,spinning records at clubs, festivals, and large-scale events all over the globe such as Sydney Mardi Gras, Bestival, Lovebox, Glastonbury Festival. Jodie's dance DJ sets have taken the DJ to New York City, Las Vegas, Vancouver, Sydney, Milan, Russia, Singapore and Ibiza, where she played alongside Swedish House Mafia at Pacha and a residency at Manumission which took her on a world tour in the summer of 2009.
International clubs played at include VIP Room (Paris, 79 (Paris), Razzmatazz (Barcelona), Pacha (Ibiza), Space (Ibiza), Plastic (Milan), Muccassassina (Rome), NYX (amsterdam), Paradiso (Amsterdam), Butter (Singapore), Marquee (Sydney), Connections (Perth), Home (Sydney), Boom Boom Room (New York).
DJ appearances include events for Swarovski Fashion Rocks, the Q Awards, MTV, Bjorn Bjorg, Vivienne Westwood, Sony, Matthew Williamson, Jeremy Scott, W Hotels and Converse as well as supporting Robyn on the London leg of her world tour.
Harsh has become a celebrity in his own right and can count Amy Winehouse, Kelly Osbourne, Lily Allen and Jaime Winstone as friends amongst other celebrity types. Despite the similarity in name, Harsh states that she does not keep in contact with the glamour model Jodie Marsh, although has met her on occasion.
Circus, later renamed This Is...Circus, was Harsh's monthly club night, It opened in 2006 and moved around venues such Soho Revue Bar, Cafe De Paris and Paramount at the top of the Centre Point building. It closed in 2012 with a stage at Lovebox festival featuring a show including Felix da Housecat, Mika and Dev. Jodie has said she felt the brand was 'in danger of becoming tired' and it was time to 'quit while we're ahead' to focus on opening Room Service around the world. In its heyday the night was notorious for attracting a fashionable celebrity crowd, and popped up as a cultural voice in Vogue and i-D magazine. Guest DJ sets by the likes of Peaches, Siouxsie Sioux, Roisin Murphy, Robyn, Friendly Fires, Kissy Sellout, William Orbit, The xx and Fenech-Soler were random and unnanounced. The Circus team programmed a stage at Lovebox Festival for two years running and collaborated with world-famous fashion photographer Tim Bret-Day on an exhibition project of gargantuous proportions in 2011. What started off as a weekly Soho hangout had now flourished into a multifaceted brand, crossing over all spectrums of popular culture, branching out over not only clubland but the performing and visual arts, fashion and music industries.
In 2010 Jodie Harsh introduced Room Service to London as a brand new concept inspired by New York City's club scenes. In this time it has seen sets from house DJ's such as Smokin' Jo, Honey Dijon, Jake Shears and Severino, and visits from George Michael, Jonathan Ross, Debbie Harry, Pet Shop Boys, Alan Carr, Stephen Fry and Roisin Murphy. Voted Attitude Magazine's Number 1 UK club night and Boyz best mid-week party in 2012, the night gained a lot of online fame instantly, becoming a pionerring gay party to be exploited by social media. The close of 2011 saw the beginning of a world tour for the club brand, starting with the largest European cities and continuing its journey through America and Russia. October 2012 saw the launch of the Room Service record label, 2013 and 2014 saw the party set up residencies in New York City, Amsterdam, Tel Aviv, Sydney, Madrid, Hollywood, Paris and Istanbul.
TV and Video
Jodie has presented segments for MTV and The BRIT awards in the UK. It has been widely rumoured in British press that Harsh is allegedly working with Jonathan Ross and World of Wonder on a UK or Europe version of US reality TV hit RuPaul's Drag Race. Harsh has not publicly released a statement about this rumour and it is not clear whether this will be a presenting or producer role. Fuelling the rumours, in summer 2014 Harsh taped a YouTube series with World of Wonder titled 'Drag Queen Problems', in which she answered questions from queens around the world in a satirical manner. RuPaul and Michelle Visage have gone on record saying they would be keen to work on Drag Race in the UK and mentioned that Jodie Harsh may be involved in this version.
- "Jodie Harsh: 'Drag is my work suit' – Profiles – People". The Independent. 18 June 2009. Retrieved 17 April 2013.
- [dead link]
- Gay Times magazine (press cutting at http://www.jodieharsh.com
- Club Kidz magazine (date unknown)(press cutting at http://www.jodieharsh.com
- Harsh Times Unit 3, 11-29 Fashion St London E1 6PX
- News of the World magazine (date unknown)(press cutting at http://www.jodieharsh.com
- Sunday Times Style magazine (date unknown)(press cutting at http://www.jodieharsh.com
- "60 SECONDS: Jodie Harsh | Metro News". Metro.co.uk. 10 September 2007. Retrieved 17 April 2013.