The Story

As a teenager in the 1970s, Paul Daly, our founder & designer, was mesmerised by the beatnik culture coming out of America led by writers Jack Kerouac, Alan Ginsberg & William S. Burroughs.

Easy Rider was a huge film in his hometown of Dublin, Ireland and this iconic cult road movie really had a huge influence on the very young but thirsty-for-knowledge Daly.

The idea of the open road was behind the road trip Daly made with his friend Stephen Wallis across Africa in 1978, starting in Morocco and ending up in Harare, Zimbabwe.

In those days, what book you were reading was a rite of passage and Daly & his fellow travellers devoured Kerouac, Bukowski, Ginsberg & Burroughs in each makeshift campsite set up under a perfect tree by a beach or a lake, and usually put together by Daly.

These makeshift temporary homes, the smell of the fire, the heat from the fire at night, the pattern of the branches and leaves on their faces made by the sunlight through the trees by day, had a huge lifelong effect on the young Daly.

On the road one had to invent a home from the organic bits and pieces that nature provided in the surrounding area. Daly would create loungers and makeshift wind breakers and headrests (this was actually the beginning of a furniture & interior design career, only the young Daly did not know that yet).

Upon returning to Dublin in 1980, Daly attended the National College of Art & Design. He played in various rock & roll bands as a frontman before moving to London to study fine art in Goldsmiths College.

These early wide-eyed and full of energy experiences, whilst still physically growing, are the source of the desire and creativity to live a free rock & roll life & lifestyle.

That early influence of the beatnik writers and the jingly jangly sound of The Velvet Underground, and the art coming out of The Factory of Warhol, eventually drew Daly to live in New York City in the mid 1980s.

His best friend Karl Stephenson from Dublin (RIP) joined him for one summer and it was there that they lived and worked hard. They both got into the juke joint culture of dive bars with killer jukeboxes that played the music that was the soundtrack to the lives of the growing number of Lower East Side & Brooklyn artists.

These life changing influences along with many other stories along the way (that will be added later from time to time ) formed the basis of Daly’s concept for Roadtrip & The Workshop of Shoreditch. A roadside juke joint, diner, DJ bar, live venue & terrace that is open-minded and inclusive and does not take itself too seriously as life on the road is full of shiny happy people.

Life is short so live now, learn now, party now, listen to a band now, talk to that girl now, talk to that boy now, drink that cocktail now, try that craft beer now, make art now as the ‘Roadtrip’ lifestyle goes ever on…

Roadtrip & The Workshop is positioned in the gateway to Shoreditch in East London and we want you to join us and our way of life.