People think that clubbing
is 500 people in a room,
sound system, DJ in the corner, bar.
But what it really is,
is a lot of hard work, risk, success, failure,
I mean I made enough money
to buy houses, I also lost houses.
Being promoter is challenging
as it is rewarding.
It's amazing, it's painful,
it's beautiful, it's fucked up.
I mean, it's like life.
The thing about being around
people having that much fun is,
it does take its toll.
My name's Ben,
I put on music events in the UK.
I've been doing that for 20 plus years.
Been smoking for even longer
than that, probably 25 years.
I smoke morning, noon, and night.
Cigarette first five minutes out of bed.
I feel like it's time to quit.
You guys are going to be with me
over the course of the next seven days
while I try and give up smoking cigarettes.
It's going to be a big week, I've
got teams going to Morocco, and Portugal,
Barcelona's a big one, 2000 people,
first time we've ever done an event with these guys
and that's going to be the one that me and Will go to.
I mean, it's all in hand,
but trying to do this without
cigarettes is going to be quite a challenge.
-Your last cigarette?
-Apparently so, yeah.
It feels significant, it feels...
I'm apprehensive, but it also feels good.
This is the last cigarette
I'm ever going to smoke, right?
So it feels really positive,
I'm going to enjoy this one, lads.
Yeah, onwards and upwards.
I mean, in terms of timing, I think this week
is categorically a terrible time to do it.
We have three shows back
to back this weekend.
We're in the thrall of
planning an enormous festival,
of which Ben is an essential part.
It's just a complete tsunami of things
that needs to get done.
When I picture myself,
I see a cigarette in my hand.
I'm sure if someone
drew a caricature of me,
there'd be a fag hanging out
of my mouth or in my hand.
When people ask me:
"When are you going to give up smoking cigarettes?"
I often say:
"Well, when I'm not so stressed."
I came to the realisation
and I think other people
have pointed this out,
that I kind thrive on stress.
I suppose what I feel is, if I can give up
smoking this week, then it's real.
You know, if I go on holiday for two weeks
and give up smoking,
come back and start smoking again,
but if I get through what I
got to get through this week,
I feel like it will stick.
So I'm going to try and go cold turkey,
but I suppose I'm also open
to trying different things.
You know, like patches, vaping,
therapies, I don't really know.
If I'm honest, I'm getting older and I can feel it.
Used to be able to rave all night,
used to be able to run up hills,
these days, I wake up, I can feel it in my chest,
I can feel it in my body.
Yeah, it feels like it's something
that needs to go, if I'm honest.
It's been a bastard of a day,
Barcelona's kind of coming together,
but the Morocco planning is really stressing me out.
I can't tell if I'd be this
annoyed if I was smoking,
but it's definitely not helping.
Going to go for a pint with a few mates,
blow off some steam.
First pint without a cigarette,
in I don't even know how long.
Let's see how that goes.
Why did you think I smoke?
I think there's so much
going on in your head,
that you just need a vice,
you need something right?
How do you think Ben's going to
do with this quitting thing?
-I don't think it's going to happen.
Really, why not? He won't give up?
He's been smoking all his life, man.
He started when he was 11, maybe.
-I smoke in bed.
-You smoke in bed?
You wake up and smoke a cigarette in bed?
Your fingers are yellow here.
Honestly, it's disgusting.
Just this idea of your finger getting yellow
and just talking to people, smelling like tobacco,
I think it's disgusting, it's terrible.
But also, you didn't ever develop the habit, you know?
Because my dad was a smoker, you know?
And my grandfather died, of cancer, so I'm not an idiot.
So by that logic, I'm an idiot,
because my father smoked--
-You're just addicted to it.
-And my grandfather died from smoking cigarettes.
I don't know how you got into that,
but I'm glad you stopped.
Yeah, well let's see how I do.
How are you?
How was the pub last night?
I think going cold turkey might have been
a bit of a mistake,
I've been pretty aggy today.
Not feeling myself, trying to focus,
I just can't seem to get my brain in gear.
I think I might need a little bit of help.
I was just looking on the internet now,
and there is a drop-in
smoking cessation clinic pretty close by,
so I think I'm going to try to get an appointment there.
-So how was that?
What did they have to say?
Well, so they've given me...
My God, they've given me so much literature,
I've got basically a book here.
So she's given me nicotine
patches, and then she said
I could use the vape thing.
I had to blow into a thing
that did my carbon monoxide reading,
and it was high.
It was, where was I on the thing?
I was... an addicted smoker.
And then I come back in two weeks time,
they do another count, and then hopefully,
she said: "Even after 24 hours,
you drop right down into a much better place."
So yeah, no, positive, but let's wait and see.
I mean if anything is going to kill me,
it's going to be cigarettes, right?
And what a way to go.
Luckily I didn't have to watch my grandfather die
but I did watch my step-mother die from cancer,
and it was not a pretty sight,
and it's not something
I'd want for myself, so if
there's a chance to change it,
it'd be really good to try and do that.
So, next day I woke up feeling pretty positive,
headed straight to the airport.
The event's coming together
but there's a few things that still need ironing out.
Morocco, there were a couple
of headaches on the way in,
we're struggling to get broadcast permits.
Lisbon, we've got one of
our most trusted crew there,
so that should be fairly safe.
Tomorrow night is the biggest one, Barcelona.
It's a new club, it's a new partner,
we've got new team on site.
Are you feeling good about it?
I'm feeling good, but the thing is, you asking me
what could go wrong is making me nervous,
I mean, everything could go wrong.
Outside I was looking at the smoking area,
thinking about, oh my god,
normally I'd be in there
chuffing down four or five cigarettes.
Good thing is, I definitely can't smoke
for the next two or three hours,
let's see what happens on the other side.
-How was that?
I'm really tempted to have a go on my vape,
I got it here somewhere.
I've got to jump on a bunch of calls,
I've got to call New York.
I've just had a bunch of texts from the office,
everyone's on my case.
OK, so I was literally in
the air for a couple of hours,
turned my phone on,
whole bunch of new problems have popped up.
Decided to keep myself out of temptation's way,
so after a quick visit to the venue to meet the promoter,
I decided to swerve the usual
beers and get an early night.
Going to the club, so going to Apolo,
to spend an hour, hour and a half on site now.
Check a few details, get our ducks in a row.
I'll try and keep cool.
Starting to feel it a little bit, but yeah.
I'm feeling just a bit shaky, and a bit run down,
and I'm trying to get my
game face on for tonight,
and I'm conscious of the fact
that I'm probably going to be
a little punchier than I would like.
I just don't know how I'm going to react.
Someone's been hitting me up
from New York about unpaid invoices;
production manager didn't turn up;
just got a call from someone in Morocco to say
that the guys there just haven't been playing ball;
so yeah, just starting to feel it a bit mate...
Maybe put the camera away, just give me a bit of space.
What I feel is constantly I could lose my shit at any point.
Certainly when I was independent,
and these days, because now I work for a company,
that's morphed into the pressure of the targets,
and the objectives and the goals,
the company sets for me.
And because of the sort of personality I am,
I take that on the chin, pony up,
put the armour on, go out to war.
Right now, I'm good for a cigarette.
I mean, I've got to be honest, I'm not sure
that's going to last the whole night.
I'm also aware that it's barely gone midnight
and we haven't gone live yet,
so there's still a lot of play in this thing.
Ben is doing my nut in, but business as usual.
He seems pretty relaxed to us.
Well I mean, he's a professional sweetheart
to you guys, but he's very, very agitated.
Spending my night walking back and forth
between front of house, back of house,
and every time I do that, I have to walk through
the smoking area, and it's doing my head in.
Turns out the one thing I didn't think of,
was the internet.
Internet just went down.
We're supposed to be live streaming to the world,
so it's OK, it's OK enough,
but yeah, what can go wrong, will go wrong.
OK, yeah, you saw me, I was smoking a fag, you got me.
Would you have told
us about that cigarette,
had we not have caught you on camera?
I mean, probably not,
I didn't really care at that point.
I mean, maybe I'd have told
you eventually and obviously,
you caught me, so I did tell you, but yeah, no,
I don't think that was my plan at the time.
Thought I'd get away with it.
Not seeing you guys on the Sunday,
not answering my phone,
not coming and doing that interview,
that little debrief on the Sunday;
it wasn't so much about the
embarrassment for having the cigarette,
because I think we all accepted that it might
happen at some point during the week.
I had actually thought it was
going to happen much earlier.
It was more that I was just, I had enough, you know?
I'd had enough of...
Sorry, I'd had enough of you guys
following me around, the pressure of it all.
What made me crack,
was I thought it'd make me feel better.
I was under so much pressure,
so I went and had that cigarette,
and unfortunately it didn't work,
it didn't make me any less stressed
and it just f**ked me off
because I'd basically smoked
and kind of broken the promise
to myself, and to you guys.
I don't think this was a failure, like...
Yeah I cracked, but I learnt a lot
about myself, and actually, we went what?
Seven days - one cigarette.
I don't think that's bad.
And actually, in the last 10 years, that's probably
the best I've done, so I'm taking it positively.
This has definitely changed the way I see myself.
From now on, I suppose, that caricature of myself
with a fag in my hand, has probably changed.
I don't know where the cigarette is,
but it's not in my hand anymore.
Having got through this
week having only smoked one cigarette,
I suppose it's taught me something.
If I can do it, other people can do it.
It's not as hard as you think it would be.
There is a lot of support out there,
and if you really want to do it,
you can stop smoking.
And that is what I want,
so I'm going to keep this going,
keep trying to quit,
I just don't want to be a smoker anymore.
I feel like it's time.
It has to be something
you want to do for yourself.
If you think about it in the right way,
and if you give yourself the chance,
then it's more than possible.