Centreforce Newsletter OCTOBER 2018
October, was the month that saw Episode One of the Centreforce Presents In Conversation sessions with a selection of its DJ’s. The event was held at the Dovecote Pub, Chingford on 6th October. There was an early kick off with Jonny C and Dean Lambert opening up proceedings at 1pm. The other DJ’s on the day included: Sterling with Randy Cee, Rooney (had to cancel) with Peter P, Carly Denham with Ramsey, Nicky B with Rob Smilie, Matt Logic, Micky ‘Star’ Lewis with Danielle Montana, Colin Hudd with Ray Keith and closing the event had to be Pasha and Master Pasha. On the day DJ Tre also showed up to help out with the tunes and original Centreforce DJ Keith Mac also made himself known and, despite resisting getting up and joining in with the conversations, was pulled in by Pasha and in between the banter they painted the audience with picture of what it was like back in 1989. Episode Two is coming in 2019.
October was no stoptober for the management though as they were busy organising the relocation of Centreforce Towers to our new home. The studio was installed on 4th October and the first show went live on the 5th.
As with every other month there were highlights. To name a few. Pez, the brilliant designer who supplied the rave scene with much of its imagery in such things as flyers appeared on a show on 2nd OCT. This was hosted by DJ Sterling. And to add further spice to the day Dean Lambert then managed to get one of the best MC’s from back in the day on the show too and we all enjoyed the one and original Chalkie White. And then Andy Smith made his debut Centreforce show on Saturday 13th and that lifted right off! In fact a whole new bunch joined the Centreforce ranks this month: Leon and Randy, Mark and Paul- Dolly Rockers, Jim Woods, Jet Boot Jack, Jimi Polo, Darrell Privett, Andy Galea and Wes C. Let them have your ears!
PEZ FLYER EXAMPLES
Before us Centreforce listeners had time to take stock we were treated with a set played by E Raze, one of the guys that bought us the scene’s classic Break For Love. Our breky show Reki was on hand to help proceedings and what a night that was. Strong!
BREAK FOR LOVE
And then to bring October to a close on 23rd, Sterling had Marshall Jefferson into the new studio for an interview and hopefully we’ll be seeing more of the Godfather of House in the future, especially once his autobiography Diary of a DJ comes out in 2019.
Marshall with his copy of Specific State ’89 by Ian ‘Snowy’ Snowball and Centreforce Radio.
Marshall in the studio with Master Pasha, Dean Lambert and Snowy
Wrapping up the month RICK BUCKLER of The Jam also made his debut. The stations intention is to diversify what it plays and who it gets on the shows. Centreforce refuses to be restricted, it knows it needs to appeal to a wider audience, whilst maintaining its core fan base-you the ravers. For many of us, before we started raving we were mods, punks, skins etc and The Jam were just one of the groups that were embraced by many a Centreforce listener.
Rick in the studio with Jonny C, Master Pasha and Sterling.
Rick and Snowy’s new book on The Jam. Out now.
And finally on Saturday 27th we had Slipmatt in the studio and wow! Slipmatt, as we know is up there with the best of them, so having him come and do a show was special and, we hope he’ll be back.
Slipmatt and Marshall signing the Centreforce Studio logo.
Hold tight Centreforcers, there’s plenty more to come in November!
FROM THE MANAGEMENT
We’ve been in our new studios for a couple of weeks and things are evolving on a daily basis. We’ve had a special month with guests like Marshall Jefferson, Rick Buckler, Danny Rampling and Slipmatt coming onto shows. It feels like we’re taking the station t the next level and we have loads of new DJ’s starting too, including a new female Emma Champion. We have a good team working in the background. We’ve also started late night sessions and have people like Rooney, Nicky B and Jack Bass doing shows and the figures for those shows have gone off he roof. I’m still trying to take it all in, it’s been amazing!
IT AINT NOTHING BUT A HOUSE PARTY
Centreforce 3rd Planet From The Sun on 16th November. Three rooms powered by Centrefore. E1 Club, 110 Pennington Street, Wapping.
BANGERS AND SMASH (FROM RAVE-WAVES)
Gary Hoxton ‘Hoxton Whores started up over fifteen years ago; we started it 2007. We had vinyl distribution then and were making tracks to fuel it. The first 150 releases we put out were vinyl only, but with the demise of vinyl we moved into MP3’s and the whole digital side of things took off and we’ve just released our 300th track. It’s been a long and good journey.
We (Chris Hanson and Kevin Andrews) always wanted the label to serve as a platform for up and coming acts and that’s what we’ve always managed to do. It’s really hard out there for young and new producers to start up and get a foot on the ladder.
The label works as a passion for me because I’ve been into house music for a long time. I heard house music at discos when I was a teenager and I started getting involved with it more when I’d go to places like the Kent Hall in Maidstone. This was around ‘86 when the Chicago stuff like Move Your Body and Jack Your Body was first coming out. I worked with distribution companies and we’d import a lot of Italian stuff and I just carried on importing records from there.
House music had been a big part of my life. The music is brilliant and then there’s also the social side of it. There have always been fun events to go to, so this keeps it interesting. There’s a usually a good and happy crowd too and this makes it unique.
I kind of dabbled in making house music and then it got more serious. We built studios in Brick Lane, London and we started to get people coming in to make music. There was a lot of talent coming through too and sometimes the talent would combine to make excellent house music.
The name of the label Hoxton Whores came about as a bit of a joke really. We were based in Hoxton and our studio was above a brothel. We’d be in the studio and the ladies of the night would be hanging around the stairs.
We did Shiny Disco Balls-the Hoxton Whores Club Mix. It was a bit of a cheeky cut up track but I sent it to Norman Cook and he got back saying he loved it and we just kind of continued from there.
We are currently working with a lot of good people. Our intention was to release a track once a month but we are releasing two a week at the moment. The tracks, that Chris and I release as Hoxton Whores, always does well. One of the recent releases has been I’ll Be There by Luca Debonaire and Jose. Our 300th track was Let Yourself Go BY k69 and we’ve been doing quite a bit with Crown and Block, who is prolific. The guy is a machine. I don’t know how he does it but he can’t sleep at night. The tracks that Crown and Block make are always full of energy and they always get a good reaction getting played in the clubs. Yeah, check out tracks like Is It Love and Give Me The Night.
So yeah, Hoxton Whores is busy with the label and we’re always out deejaying.
FEATURED DJ’S AND MC’s
Introducing this month’s Centreforce family members
LEGEND is a word frequently used by people when they talk about Graham Gold-one of the most influential and ground breaking Dj’s ever on Londons Kiss 100. 8 years in the DJ Mag Top 100, 150 cities across 40 countries played and 700,000 mix albums sold. Now playing only the finest progressive house and techno, his syndicated radio show draws over a quarter of a million listeners weekly. Graham also co-runs Moon Island Records from his home on Koh Phangan, Thailand, and recent releases on the label alongside releases on Krafted, Bequem, Jungle Funk, SJE and Endemic have shown his production strength .
‘When did it start for me, well define house music. I was playing all the tracks that were coming out of Chicago in 1986/87 on the Trax and DJ International labels. This was when I was the resident at Gullivers which was in Mayfair, the club I played at just before I started playing on KISS FM.
When house first started coming out I was still a soul boy. It wasn’t until 1991 that I got into playing just house and then trance around 96. I liked the early house stuff because it was different. I liked the stuff that Paul Simpson done and I was playing that in 1986.
When disco died in the late 70’s things started to change. The BPM dropped down to 98, 99, 100 and then it started to speed up again as people like Soul 11 Soul, Mantronix and Intuition came about. Part of the attraction of house was that the BPM picked up again. We were bored with the slower beats by the mid-80’s.
I was never into the acid house thing. I didn’t get it and this was partly because I didn’t do any drugs. I couldn’t understand why people were putting their heads in the bass bins-they were all on acid. I was very naive throughout the 80s when it came to drugs. I was also playing in the black clubs like Gullivers so I just didn’t get into acid house. My first real taste was in 1987 at a Caister Soul Weekender. I think it was Colin Hudd who was playing it.
I didn’t really get to any of the big raves at the time because I was working six nights a week at Gullivers. And then I started playing on the pirate radio stations. I played on JFM in 1983 and then Solar and then eventually KISS in the early 90’s (I never did KISS when it was still a pirate). My days used to be getting u at 11, go for a run, do some weights, have lunch, leave at 2 and go to the studio and then do the drive time show and then I’d be off to Gullivers. I was also writing the reviews for Blues and Soul Magazine. I didn’t have time to go to raves.
My connection to Centreforce came about after getting to know Dean Lambert. He arranged for me to do a show on Centreforce and I liked the idea of doing something live. I like to play new music. I love new music and I keep re-inventing myself and there’s something about house music that I just fucking love. I’ll be doing more shows for Centreforce in the future.’
Tony did a show on 13th September. Tony ‘I really enjoyed doing the show. It was nice and relaxed. I put in big tunes like the Thrashing Doves version of Sympathy For The Devil. That was one of my Baleric tunes all day long. It was one of the songs that only a few of us played too. From a Balearic point of view that Trashing Doves track was a turning point. A lot of the people who were of that age group knew the song by the Rolling Stones so they reverted back to their younger days.
I never played on Centreforce back in the day I was with a different station. But we both had nights on at Echos. I had Adrenalin which I got going in 1988, first at Twilights and then we moved to Echos. Andy had his night on the Saturday. I had Adrenalin just as the warehouse scene was getting going.
Centreforce was important back in the day. It helped make the warehouse scene what it was. Centreforce now can’t be knocked. It’s going really well and the DAB licence is a great move for them. I’ll be back doing more shows soon too.
Tony Wilson’s piece lifted from Specific State ’89
‘Andy (Swallow) did their thing on the Saturday night in Echos and we did our nights called Adrenalin was on the Friday. This was in 1989. Echos was the posh club in East London at the time. It was a good size with two floors. A decent bar and a VIP area and I think the venue had a capacity of about 800 people and we’d get that many people turning up too.
I started deejaying in the early 80’s. I came up through the soul scene and then the rap scene and then I got into house, which was after Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley’s Jack Your Body came out. I was working with Paul Oakenfold in the Project club in Streatham. Johnny Walker was also part of it and that was the first club in London where Alfredo played. The Project Club was where the Balearic scene was born really and then the rest is history.
I started going out to Ibiza in 1983 and then I lived out there. When I came back I started playing at the warehouse parties around East London. I got to know the Centreforce people but I wasn’t ever a DJ on the station. What can be said is that Centreforce was very important at the time and it was needed to help advertise the various do’s and fill the airwaves with house music.
I’ve been keeping an eye on what Centreforce have been doing on Facebook and it’s good to see that young people are getting involved with it. And it’s really important to see the young people getting into it.
Introducing Centreforce Sid (illustration by Lee Castle). Fave pirate: Centreforce, Fave place to Rave: Clinks, Fave shoes: Wallabees, Fave DJ-Carl Cox, Fave shop: Mash, Fave song: Your Love-Frankie Knuckles, Fave record hop: Black Market, Fave hairdressers: Fish, Fave fanzine:Boys Own. The tales of the thrills, pills and bellyaches are coming in future editions of the newsletter.
BACK CHAT From the Centreforce Family
This months Back Chat with Hazel Minns
‘The first rave that I went to was in 1988 at a warehouse on an industrial estate in Barking. It was a pretty epic and life changing experience. I fell in love with the scene after that and started going to Future, Spectrum. The Trip, Sin and parties like that. It was an amazing time. I also remember thinking that everyone was just being super friendly. I only found out later that they were all off of their tits. I also went to Shoom but only once and someone asked me recently if it was amazing. I replied yes but back then we didn’t know that it was amazing. It didn’t have the cult status that it has nowadays. For us it was just another place that we went to.
I’d go to the various raves with my best mate who was called Jodie. I loved the music too and, spent many Saturday afternoon going to a record shop in Barking to buy 12 inches. Jack Your Body was the first 12 inch that I bought. The music and the parties had a great vibe and because I loved dancing I was really attracted to it. It was a revolution to although at the time we didn’t really know that it was. We were just young and caught up in it all.
I really loved going to the Trip. I was really into Nicky Holloway so would go to loads of the parties that he’d be playing at. We spent many nights in my mates mini listening to Centreforce or Sunrise and trying to find the raves. Being in a convoy driving around country roads was very exciting. We’d also be pulling over and call the hotline numbers to get the information that we needed for the next meeting point. We’d often be bombing it down to South Mimms Service Station and join in with everyone who was dancing and trying to find the location for the rave. It was a really special time.
My choice of footwear was either Timberland boots or wallabies. I had a brown and lilac pair and I loved them. I had some outrageous trousers that I used rave in too. I don’t know how my parents allowed me out of the house. I always had a big aran cardigan that I lived in and I wore a big floppy hat. In fact my aunty, who was a bit of 70’s throwback came round one day and she was wearing a velvet jacket and, she made me a hat out of that afternoon. I loved that hat!
Going into 1990 we sort of stopped going to raves in warehouse and fields and moved into the clubs. I’d go to places like Echos or Limelights. We’d done all the big open air raves like Sunrise and Biology. The first one I went to was Karma Sutra in Kent. This was after I returned from travelling in Australia, which I did between January and June in ’89.
I went to the Freedom To Party demonstration which was in January 1990. It was held in Trafalgar Square. Debbie Malone was there and she sung Rescue Me. I remember it was pissing down on the day and there were thousands of people. We ended up at some party held in some arches, I think near Vauxhall.
Things started to change and that was partially why I started going to clubs. It was also winter and my mates and me didn’t really want to be going to cold warehouses. In a few months I’d gone from dancing in a field to getting dressed up and going to a club. The scene was changing, the police were cracking down and there were people getting into the scene for not good reasons.
I did go to a few raves like Raindance but something about the raves was different. It was as if they started to get more sophisticated. But I do look back on that period with fond memories, it was the best time of my life.’
Back Chat with Hazel Minns
An excerpt from Specific State ’89 by Ian ‘Snowy’ Snowball and Centreforce Radio. Out now (Amazon/Waterstones etc)
CHAPTER ONE: FREEDOM TO PARTY PART 1
Patch noticed a discarded copy of The Sun on a bench in Hyde Park and, not being one to miss out on a freebie, snatched it up before anyone else could. Clocking the date: January 27 1990 and the price of the paper he fingered his way through the pages of the scum with his long nail bitten fingers, a habit he’d been dragging along with him since he had nails hard enough to chew on. When he was younger his parents had tried all sorts of things to ‘cure’ him of his addiction. Shouting and yelling at him constantly had worn them down so they’d tried some medical nail varnish that tasted disgusting and, of course, hadn’t worked. Patch had long since surrendered to his vice and in the context of his other vices, biting his nails was hardly anything to worry about.
On leaving Hyde Park, Patch agreed that the page three model was well-formed and looked incredibly proud of herself about it. He lingered on the page for far longer than he really needed to. Shrugging his shoulders and reassuring himself that his memory wank was secured for the next morning, he hastily flicked through the pages until he got to the sports section. His eyes immediately locked onto an article about West Ham’s recent signing and hopeful Trevor Morley. The journalist was singing Lou Macari’s praises regards Morley being a good signing for the club and also how he scored a fantastic goal away at Hull City the Saturday before.
The article excited Patch because he’d been a Hammer since he was seven years old. His dad and uncle had taken him and his older brother to their first match and, like all first matches, he believed he could remember everything about the day: the chatter of fans discussing what the manager should have done; the smell of burgers and horse shit; the mean-looking police officers and the meaner looking West Ham fans dressed in their flared trousers, with their long scruffy hair and their claret and sky blue woollen scarves wrapped around their wrists. And once inside Upton Park, Patch also remembered the roar of the fans as the goals went in and the tackles which ensued and the mandatory fighting between the rival fans around the Chicken Run terrace. Patch also remembered how his dad and uncle had laughed and encouraged the West Ham fans as they ploughed into the rival fans. Patch knew the memories of his first football match would stay with him until his last breath left him. He’d also remember how he’d got his nickname. It had been an away match – West Ham’s finest taking the Ordinary to Liverpool for the Everton game. Everton were riding high, feeling confident that they’d be the sure winners for that season. Their firm were also reaping the benefits, strutting around, chests pushed out, twiddling their moustaches. It was after the game that the real battle commenced and, on the way back to the train station, a fight had broken out. It hadn’t been anything too violent and the clash certainly didn’t go down in any hooligan history book, but Patch did take a hell of a blow to his right eye. He never saw the punch coming but he remembered dropping to his knees and bracing himself for the next blow.
It took several weeks for the damaged eye to heal and even then, the socket area never quite looked the same. Along with a small scar, the impact of the blow had left a shadow around the skin and it was this that led to him being called Patch. He’d been Patch since the 84/85 season and now it felt strange and unusual if anyone called him by his real name, which was a boring John. Hand on heart, Patch was happy with being called Patch; it was unique and at least it had come about because of a football related incident and he could use this to trade off.
Just as Patch was finishing the newspaper article, a gush of cold wintery wind hit him in the face. He shuddered and pulled his baseball cap down as far it would go over his forehead. As he did so, he heard someone hurl some abuse at a posh-looking woman being hastily ushered into a Mercedes outside The Dorchester Hotel. He instantly recognised the offender’s voice. It was Mancunian. It was his best mate and co-offender Tat. Tat was born and bred in Manchester, with a family history that had once included a longstanding family business in the textile industry; an uncle who been hung for murdering the man who’d been shagging his wife; and, from the 1950’s onwards, there wasn’t a time when at least one of Tat’s family hadn’t spent a period in Strangeways.
When Tat was eleven years old he bought his first 7” single. It was That’s Entertainment by The Jam. He’d used some of his birthday money to buy the record. He retained vivid memories of the day he bought the record. He’d opened up his cards and presents, readily putting to one side the socks, shirt and jumpers that family members had got him, and which were possibly stolen, and he raced off to Woolworths. Once inside, he made a beeline for the records section, dived into the J’s and fished out That’s Entertainment. Years after, Tat could still picture himself feeling on top of the world as he’s handed over his fifty pence in coppers and silvers, watched the girl at the counter drop the seven inch into a bag and pass it back to him. Tat literally ran back home, he couldn’t wait to play his record. He’d pushed open the front door (it was always unlocked in those seemingly more safer days), climbed the wooden hill to his bedroom in the converted attic, making sure he spat some abuse at his Abba-adoring sister as she applied more mascara to her eyelashes and fell to his knees, booting up his record player as he did so. He removed his record from the bag, took the 7” single from the pink and white picture sleevewith the images of the pound sign, police car and so forth and carefully placed the record into position. It was at that moment that Tat’s heart sank back down to the basement. The record was missing the middle bit which held it in position. Tat swore, replaced the record back into the sleeve and the Woolies bag and retraced his footsteps back into the city centre, where he’d then explained to the woman behind the counter that he couldn’t play his birthday present because it had no middle. Thankfully for Tat, she’d been sympathetic and had signalled to another Woolies’ worker to go and fetch the missing part. The issue was resolved and once back home, Tat had played the record over and over again.
Buying That’s Entertainment opened up a whole new world for the boy Tat. From that day on, he scrimped and saved what money he could and spent it all on buying records. That’s Entertainment was also Tat’s gateway into The Jam and within weeks he’d saved or stolen enough coppers to purchase a copy of The Jam’s Setting Sons album. It was a song on that album called Thick As Thieves that was to become the reason why he picked up his nickname Tat-Thick As Thieves – because whenever any of his friends visited him, he’d always have the song playing on his record player. And Tat was more than pleased with his nickname, especially when he compared it to names bestowed upon others like Piggy, Bully Spud, or just cunt.
The Jam was something that Patch and Tat had connected over. They’d met in the school classroom five years earlier. It was Tat’s first day at his new school, having moved down to London with his mum, only the week before. As the two boys sat at their desks Patch had noticed Tat’s Adidas Samba trainers and the black Farah strides and he’d approved. They’d got talking and before their first conversation had finished they’d established that they both loved football, albeit one was West Ham and the other Manchester City, clothing labels like Lois, Pringle and Lacoste and The Jam. From that day on, they both felt they had found someone who understood their passion for the Holy Trinity of football, fashion and music. Also, from that day on, Patch and Tat became thick as thieves and were always seen in the company of the other. The only days they weren’t seen together was when they went to football. Both followed their teams up and down the country, home and away on cold wet and windy days. For them, football also provided opportunities to have a dig, a laugh and even on occasion an argument, but they never came to blows; they knew they loved each other too much to allow even something as important as football to come between them.
Smiling, Patch leaned against what looked like a newly painted white wall and waited for his friend to catch him up. Tat took his time, he seldom rushed anywhere. Patch noticed Tat was wearing the new red Kickers he’d recently bought from the Boot Store in the King’s Road. He was wearing a new baseball cap too which Patch vaguely recalled Tat telling him over the phone that he picked up from Mash.
Keep it locked for the next newsletter. Let’s Get Busy!
All the best
Snowy (Centreforce Features and Reviews Editor)