rear The East House
Having Africa as a memory was one thing – there are times and events that cause further change. I was persuaded to do a show at a local pub – the East House – because of my Coventry roots and my love of ska. This later developed into my fully returning to the world of the DJ (first times being in the early 70s). Thus, this became a time of new growth, new discovery. I soon acquired a partner in musical performance – Chris and later Matt (Ripparoots). The odd event at the East House became regular shows, carting a P.A. and playing gear from my home in the flats close by to the pub. It was then that new loves and interests were sparked, particularly deep house, trip hop and a lot more – eventually spanning liquid dnb, 2step garage, balearic beats, soul , northern, on towards breaks via big beat, even cajun, french hip hop and so on. These were days that took me and shows to the Tea Gardens another local, the Highway, mentioned elsewhere and various parties. Ultimately I spent a fair amount of time in places such as the Arches and a whole raft of other slightly and fully ‘underground’ venues, warehouses and the like.
It is a shame that most of these venues have now gone, either simply derelict, burned down, converted into shops. These were days of all sorts of music for me – classic deep house, the beginnings of my tastes trip hop wise, my ongoing love of ska, northern soul, classic soul, disco, original r&b, funk and then the later tastes in what was to become liquid dnb, big beat, later breaks.
I have written previously on the subject of small venues. In a different blog – f4mmedia – I looked particularly at the Redhouse, a Sheffield venue typified as providing the widest range of music in South Yorkshire. I love small venues – so much friendlier, warmer, more personal. I have worked at quite a number and DJed at many. These have included:
- the East House, now a cake shop and cafe, once known as the Dodge City saloon courtesy of murders decades ago
- the Tea Gardens, now a food store, once a temperance house
- the Harley, still going!
- the Earl, once a pound house, stables in the rear
The East House was the venue where futurhood was first established leading to the creation of futurhood av. Its origins lie in the phrase ‘in the neighbourhood of the future – that’s where we are’, a phrase coined by a close friend. This was the venue where I re-engaged with djing putting on nights based around northern soul, ska, classic soul, liquid dnb, 2 step garage, funk, deep house and all sorts of other material.
The Earl was the venue giving rise to an event which made some personal history for me and the group of friends with whom I co-promoted – Spannered. we use to say it did what it says on the tin. Based around breaks, techno and other electronica, it made DJ mags top ten nights in the land and forged brief links with other DJ mags. it was the venue which saw the birth of Aromatiq.
The Redhouse was a major step in my own history of involvement with small venues. Aside from dealing with security I put on events and djed for others. The range of music included ska – all 3 waves and most languages, house, techno, trance, mashups, funk, jazz funk, deep house, balkan, african, latin of all varieties, dubstep, dnb, garage, broken beat, nujazz, nusoul and probably a load I have forgotten.