Ali Jobe

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By Red Casual 7th March 2019

He became one of the first faces on many of the leading club nights in London, a DJ and a promoter. He was the guy on many of the doors where he sometimes had to pick his crowd at clubs including Flying, Boys Own, Full Circle also Ibiza and Rimini.  Before all this he was a main face in Arsenal’s football Firm – The Gooners.   I first met Ali around 1990 at a few London night clubs he’s another solid chap! He popped into Holywell Street towers for a chat. 

Firstly, good to see you again, welcome and thanks for meeting us. How’s things?

All is good mate thanks, working hard and enjoying life right now.

Good to hear, starting with London and the music, where does your musical roots come from and what would be your preferred bands or dance music growing up? 

Growing up I had quite an open musical mind and started listening to Sam Cooke, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder etc, mainly through my father’s LP records as I got into my teens I found Bob Marley, and then into more R&B, before finding the Ska, rude boy and Skinhead music that I loved being a part of. Later in my late teens and early 20’s I started DJing with my best friend and legendary DJ Brando Block – we started with a mobile disco called Ecstasy, I brought a yellow BT van whilst Brandon brought the decks and speakers from Tandy, that was it we were off and running playing 70’s and 80’s Jazz funk and soul tunes that pulled in a massive following.

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What’s your early memories of Arsenal and growing up a supporter?

Early memories of going over the Arsenal were around 1977 bunking over the big green gate at Highbury every time we were at home and just feeling that I belonged to a special place where my heroes would run out and send me into euphoria for the two hours.

I remember that my favourite player at the time was Malcolm Macdonald and he was banging in the goals for fun. The game that really stuck out for that year was my first ever Arsenal v Tottenham game, the atmosphere was crazy, I think there was almost 50,000 in Highbury for that game, It was over the Christmas period and the song ‘Hark now hear’ was sung loud and the words were very true. The game was a 2-2 draw but to see my hero score our two goals was the best thing ever, I was hooked.

Are you still attending games?  How did feel about moving from the old Highbury down to the new Emirates?

I hardly get to games now because of work commitments and because I run a grass roots youth football club which takes up most Saturdays and Sundays also, I feel that the current state of the pastime is far from the working man’s game that everyone could relate too, look around the stadiums now and it’s a joke how you have people screaming and shouting in there suits and ties, eating their prawn sandwiches and watching the game on telly in a box at the ground, The Emirates is not Highbury and will never give me that sense of belonging that we all felt at Highbury.

We know Arsenal were the first casual dressed crew in London and always well turned out, were you there from the start?

Yeah, Arsenal have always been known to have the fans that started the casual look in London and saw us move away from the old donkey jackets and boots.

For me personally this changed in 1979 if you remember Bjorn Borg was the man and he started wearing Fila, it was the nuts the different bold colours, Arsenal were in Europe that year and we ironically drew Gothenburg from Sweden which just so happened to be Borgs Country so after assuring my Dad that I was going to France on a day trip with School, four of us left for Sweden on a ferry, my first ever trip abroad with my football family and could not believe how different it was – the shops were particularly good the sports shops that had Bjorn Borgs Fila’s all over them Arsenal ended up drawing the game but was enough to see us through to the next round, oh and we brought back lots of shopping from the shops. It wasn’t long before some of our lot were going abroad during the week on shopping sprees for the latest Fila, Tacchini, Ellesse etc.

It wasn’t long before the London stores started stocking the same and one of our favourite places was Sharp Sports in Kensington at the same time we started wearing the Lois jeans, but you had to slit the side at the bottom seams so they fitted well over your kickers, Trim Trams, Stan Smiths, and Gazelles. Alongside the Burberry, Aquascutum, jackets and trench coats. In the eighties we got into Stone island Cp Company, Armani, etc by having a Gooner who had connections directly with the main importers into England.

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I can remember we were in Milan 93 or 94 we were playing Torino away but didn’t want to stay in Torino as it is a very industrial town, so we decided to meet in a boozer before heading off from Milan, we met in a medium sized bar and it was packed obviously, back then we were all wearing Stone Island, Armani, Cp Company etc, there was only around 10 local Italians in the joint and we didn’t terrorise or offend anyone, in fact myself and a couple of others started talking to guys at the bar. I could see that one of them was close to tears, so I asked if he was ok, he asked if we were from England … I looked around the bar and said of course we are mate, he started shaking his head and said: I cannot believe this day, I asked: why? because an Italian team would lose tonight to and English side? he said: no, you guys have made me so happy because you are wearing my clothing, I said do you supply Italian clothing to the UK? no, he said I design it! He took a card from his wallet – he was the main designer for Stone Island. I looked around the bar again and they must have been 45 different people wearing Stone Island clobber, I went and found our UK seller and introduced him to the designer, As we left he shouted God bless the English and God bless Arsenal. Imagine how he felt that night!

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Personally I don’t wear the clobber anymore, I mean, walking to my local shops around 10 years ago and seeing moo moos wearing fake Stone Island done me! Even tramps I’ve seen with SI on and then if you go over football now and you’ve got a father and his two boys all wearing it has de-valued it for me. I have good memories at Arsenal coming back from home and away games and all heading for The Lyceum in the strand for the Saturday night out … win, lose or draw. We did change the face of the casual mainly due to going away in Europe and the shopping-sprees.

Can you give us a brief story on the Gooners and The Herd at Arsenal?

No stories of the Gooners or the Herd at this moment lol … But QPR away Latimer Road, PSG away, Ipswich away, Stoke away, Millwall The Blind Beggar Those that know, KNOW!

Arsenal were a very mixed race firm with a lot of Irish lads at the start of the scene? Did any right-wing influence try and highjack the crew?

The right-wing factions have always tried to infiltrate Arsenal, but were always told where to go, they never did get a foothold at Arsenal even though I had seen few of them there, but the original firm who many still go today always let them know they are still NOT welcome!

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The Bear? The legend, we’ve only heard good things …. What was he like? 

You will only hear good things about the Bear, because he was good.

He was a loving Dad who loved his mates and their families, he would walk in a room and light the whole place up, he would have everyone in stitches in minutes, a total larger than life character who like a shepherd would look after his flock and maybe herd them up at times (lol)  My kids loved him, whenever he saw them he would pull money out of his pocket and give it to them.

I was so proud to have been part of the group that put on a benefit for his wife Mandy and two daughters Tiffany and Lyndsay – we held it at the famous Heaven nightclub and Madness, Pet shop boys, Tall Paul, Brandon Block, Terry Farley, Steve Lee, Judge Jules, all played for free, the event sold out and we managed to raise thousands of pounds for the family.

Excellent tribute there mate.  Have you ever been up for any Scottish matches? 

Unfortunately, never made it up to Scotland for a game but was present at Highbury for games against Celtic Tony Adams testimonial was one of them, we always had a strong repour with Celtic due to the connections etc also players like Charlie Nicholas but a certain Rangers one sticks out as they thought they would take liberties but didn’t!

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The club scene? How did you come to be with the Flying crowd, which club nights did you start out at?

In 1988 Brandon Block and Dean Thatcher introduced me to Charlie Chester who asked me to do my first ever door at their new night called Flying at the Queens reservoir in Colnbrook. I would later work the doors at all the best clubs in London, Sheffield, Nottingham, Leicester, Wolverhampton, Birmingham, Brighton, Leeds, Middlesbrough to name a few. Also, with Charlie I worked on Cowboy records, Flying records, Ibiza 90, Rimini 91.

One of my favourite joints was Dingwalls Camden, but best venue I’d say I’d went to was Rocky’s Birthday on a boat near Canary Warf. You also did the door that night, did you have a best venue?

My Favourite venue I must say was the Soho Theatre Club where Flying started out not for any thrills or special décor, but the space was just fantastic and with the crowd made it the very best place to be with incredible atmosphere.

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Any mad stories of being a tube driver, club promoter, DJ and doorman at the same time? 

I can’t reveal any stories I’m saving them all for the book hahaha but there are plenty … I’m a diplomat and will protect all my friends until they upset me of course lol.

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You started out DJing with Brandon Block did you come from the same area in London?

Yes, me and Blocko always were in each other’s houses growing up, as we lived only two streets away from each other in Wembley, we still do live very close and see each other often.

How hard was it to do the doors with a bit of clubbing and the odd bit of DJing back in those days?

It was easy DJing and doing doors back in the day, it was hard keeping the day job as a train driver though as I would be getting the first train out in the morning after leaving a club hahaha Some of the people I would pick up would have been in the same club earlier, and got freaked out when I called their name out over the tannoy on the train. I used to pick up Brandon on his way to work he would meet my train at Sudbury town and then he would spend his journey looking through the spy hole and saying things like: ‘ hello my lovely in the red dress welcome on board the love train’   lol.

Full Circle – another great day out on a Sunday, luckily we go to know yourself and got in, but eventually, the crowds that turned up there on a Sunday afternoon became chaotic. How hard was that to deal with?

Full Circle was another ground breaking club that started at Queens and then moved to the Greyhound in Colnbrook  it was fantastic, people would turn up from all over London and soon after taking off from all around the UK people wanting to carry their weekend on, came and enjoyed meeting people from around the UK and listening to DJs from around the world, Phil and Fiona had created a very special Sunday clubbing extension which meant I didn’t see a Sunday dinner for some 12 years.

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I was aware a few years back about a club you had on the go named Sweet Sensation?  This was actually in the old Greyhound – Full Circle original gaff? That must have been strange and nostalgic … How did it go? 

Sweet Sensation at the greyhound was emmense people wanted to come out and be a part of the reunion of this iconic venue that has been turned into a strip joint the event was fantastic, and it brought back so many memories of great times at the venue.

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Your best three 80s labels?

Fila, Addidas, Lacoste

Best three albums?

Bob Marley – Rastaman vibration

UB40 – Signing off

Michael Jackson – Off the Wall

Can you give us your top five dance tracks?

Seuno Latino

Ten City – Devotion

Gat Décor – Passion

Bassheads – is there anybody out there

Cherl Lynn – Encore

From the football terrace scene to the clubbing scene did you overlap these and looking back what was your preference?

Terrace and Clubbing always crossed over, some funny stories there but for another time (book)

What’s new for your good-self? Any projects on the go apart from the book? or are you living quiet?

Just working hard a few ideas with Brandon, the childrens football takes up a lot of my time but I enjoy it.

Thanks for dropping in mate, good to speak you again.

No probs mate.

Ins and Outs from an airport lounge, slightly cynical and dark in places.

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In

Having a pal called ‘Yuckles’ 

Sparkling water.

The George & Pop song.

Brown Kickers and Burlington socks.

Neil Lennon keeping up good vibes.

Walking into a training course and shouting: ‘it’s maself’

A day on the booze with Paul Kealy.

Damien Quinn

Doing the moonwalk backwards into the workplace.

Watford beating Leicester.

Shelving Berocca.

Damien Quinn – Rebel Sunday’s.

Calling yer dog an arsehole.

Double dunting your Berocca.

Spraying yourself with every aftershave tester at the Airport Duty Free.

Harry Lauder – Stop yer tickin Jock.

Great pals – old and new.

James Forrest – great guy, great life.

Out

The quote: ‘what’s for you won’t go by you’ 

The quote: ‘think positive thoughts and positive things will happen’

The quote, when talking about people who have recently passed away ‘they’ll be up there having a party’ in a better place kinda thang.

Any comment uttered on The Apprentice.

Stuck up kids.

Blokes that would hump the barbers floor!

The Black-Mutt.

Food tasting programmes ‘your dish is definitely missing something’ quotes.

Brendan Rodgers ‘my ball and I’m going home’ attitude to life.

Brendan Rodgers lying bassa.

Anything by Simply Red.

FB Snides throwing out fishing bait to attract wrong un’s.

Union Jack flag over the balcony on holiday type of buffoons.

*Disclaimer: it’s only a bit of lark*

Terry Farley

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The original Soul Boy, London casual, DJ, producer and co founder of Boys Own. He’s always an interesting chap.

Holywell Street would like to welcome Terry Farley in for a visit. I’d prefer to call this a chin-wag rather than an interview as I’ve known Terry since the early 90s, we’ve always exchanged chat and more importantly, I’ve picked his brains for many years – at last we can now get it on paper. So from one trainspotter to the other …

 

Welcome matey, first of all … What were your musical roots growing up in London?

My Mum loved Tamala Motown and any black music while my old man sinatra and jazz, our family parties were all what i guess you would call ‘MOD ‘ music hower reggae was the music of North Kensington on the streets and that was the music of the kids.

We’ve spoken before and touched on the black influence which inspired a lot for you, did you mention sitting on a wall as kid listening to the Jamaican influences around your area coming out the houses?

We lived in a run down Victorian house no indoor toilet, no bathroom and a huge concrete air raid shelter at the bottom by the railway lines (my nan kept chickens in there) as nippers we would sit up on the flat roof of the shelter and watch the goods trains go up towards Willesden junction – next door had a Irish family and a Jamaican family, the old fella had a Ford Zephyr car with leopard skin seat covers and played reggae out his back window all day, the bass drove into my soul .

We’ve also spoke in the past about those early Skinheads and how well turned out they were also their music, they were obviously not racist. What kind of labels did they have?

I had two older cousins who wore the gear but never had crops, had never heard the word ‘skinhead ‘ or seen anyone with a crop until two lads (one blond, one ginger) turned up at my school on the white city estate ‘sir Christopher wren’ they were like pop stars, kids following around all day, it was definitely a look for maybe two years before a craze with a name. It seemed that everyone who went to football and liked music and clobber was a ‘skinhead ‘ by 1970. What ever colour, never heard about racists and skins until the soppy lot who came around the time punk went mainstream. For me, I was too young to go to pubs or clubs and we never had any youth clubs around Latimer Road. It was at the football where you checked out what the smart lads were wearing and where we wore our best gear (sadly my 13-year-old self was more of an admiring obsessive than anything else)

I always felt the same at the match, it was like a working class catwalk I was always crowd watching at Celtic. That area Kings Road/Fulham and near by Loftus Road must have been cutting edge at the match?

The Northerners were always a scruffy bunch even Man Utd – in 68, QPR got into the First Division for the first time and our end ‘the Loft’ got taken over by the bigger clubs (don’t remember any violence just sheer weight of numbers) and Man Utd had thousands in the Loft, all scruffs wearing red-and-white painted construction helmets. Chelsea turned up for a Testimonial pre-season and were all mid-teens in pastel coloured sta-press and Harrington’s, never seen a big mob of kids all dressed the same, that was it for me, it sealed my obsession.

What was the track they use me to play at Chelsea on the tannoy the one everyone would clap to?

Harry J and the All Stars – Liquidator, they still do at every game.

That was it … Like a theme tune of the terraces but has continued? Where does the soul boy scene start for yourself in all this?

Well, I was too young to be a decent baby skinhead, then the continuation of the MOD to SKINHEAD line was obviously Soul Boy, same kids off the same estates and suburbs dancing to the new music out of Chicago / NY and Detroit, it just made obvious sense. All the best girls were into it and were dressing like Biba girls and the boys a mix of Bowie circa 75 / Roxy music and happy days style ‘Americana’. We were all the right age all together 16 to 18 that’s the age when you ‘own’ a look, when you all dress in a similar style and strut about like nothing that came before mattered, the period before Punk (1976) saw kids sporting wedge haircuts, plastic sandals, mohair jumpers , dungarees after Punk a lot of the weirder soul boys deserted the ship and from 77-79 it went up market. South Moulton street rather than Kings rd. – Italian knitwear, Lacoste tops, Fiorucci jeans anything that was expensive and designer. Around 79/ 80 the whole scene blew up and went commercial with all-dayers bringing in a younger crowd, they didn’t see the fashion link in the way we did and so most of our crowd fucked off to the cooler Soho scene where you had all kinds of styles going on.

Those all dayers must have been top times. So the London Casual would be perhaps born from this?

They were the commercial end of a great look
The wedge Barnet was nod seen as divvy to be honest. At the match it was MA1 jackets. Lonsdale pastel sweats Lois jeans and ‘boxer haircuts’ short side parting 60s ivy style. Adidas samba the only trainer worn the  nasty brown suede ones that everyone wore playing five-a-side.

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I visited south London around 1985 and they mentioned soul boys I wasn’t aware of what this was until they pointed out a group which were actually what I know as casuals, was this a crossover maybe tied in with modern day soul?

Lacoste, Burberry, Lois, Fiorucci, Gabicci etc were all worn around soul clubs and the disco pubs on the old Kent Road aHackney Road 1980 onwards.
I was to old to be a casual but I just wore the stuff I already wore plus a few items such as the BJ / Bjorn Borg elites – for the match.

We’ve spoken about Stuarts and the area around Chelsea and QPR and the crews that hung about there in the past, what was the shop like initially? You mentioned a lot of cabbies and black lads shopped there as well?

Stuart’s sold ‘ casual wear ‘ to the local community i.e. slacks Gabicci style jumpers, suede bomber jackets.
The West Indian singers had adopted the look from the NY Italian American wise guys circa 71 (I think mean streets film) loads of football lads went into Stuart’s then winter 81 the Pringle craze hit the London terraces and Stuart’s jumped all over that.

I think you mentioned a lot of ‘taxing’ went on in the area around Stuart’s with certain mobs and gangs then? Was it any teams are in particular?

The Ladbroke Grove lot used to tax kids coming out especially those from outside the area
Once the casual thing went nationwide you would get kids from all over the country going to Stuart’s
Snide tactics in my opinion.

When the casual scene kicked off did it come across as being at all right wing influenced? There were a lot of mixed race lads in firms initially?

No, Casual was a link from mod to skins to soul boys, what happened was the first London ‘casuals’ were kids who had been clubbing ( Arsenal and Ladbroke grove had battles at the Lyceum and Arsenal and Under-fives down the Hackney Road) Once the younger kids who had been skins started wearing the clobber they brought the politics in but the NF never got a foothold at Spurs or Arsenal . Chelsea had a top younger casual lot that were racially mixed and other firms who were right wing but everyone were ‘Chelsea first ‘ and many prominent lads were black / mixed race – weird situations looking back but I think for most of the younger kids doing a Nazi salute meant fuck off to the wider public rather than a salute to Adolf – it was a bit like when Punk adopted Nazi symbols as anti-establishment and as a way to shock … all the London clubs had main lads of different races and colours while still having racists in the firms .. you can’t put normal rules of society onto hooligans.

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Arsenal were always a well turned out mob, first on the scene with the labels, they should get more credit. Chelsea had a lot of lads from the Home Counties if I recall? Also quite a lot of Irish lived around Fulham area?

The Borough of Fulham and Chelsea was a working class one up until the late 60s when ‘the swinging sixties ‘ led to Chelsea as an area then nearby Fulham becoming really expensive to live which pushed out people . This Home  Counties thing was simply because that part of London was the first to be gentrified . By the mid-80s Battersea was now the spill over for the middle classes who couldn’t afford Fulham or Chelsea, by the late 90s those who had purchased houses in these boroughs either sold up and moved to the outer boroughs like Bromley, Sutton and Wandsworth – or were stuck on sink council estates surrounded by the middle classes . It simply happened to Chelsea’s working class support first, look at Spurs match going support today practically none live in the borough same with West Ham who all come in from Essex and even Millwall with Bermondsey now a desirable borough for young middle class couples, meanwhile the estates that surrounded these newly re-populated  areas are killing grounds of young teenagers; these senseless deaths are in my opinion, the number one issue in London.  More children and young men are dying at the hands of each rather than by jihadi bombs in London, this is something nobody is addressing. 

Best City in the world in my opinion but in recent years the working class are getting pushed out, a lot of them out the City all together.

Not only in recent years mate, my family included, a thirteen-year-old me were pushed out of North Kensington by the greater London council with two take-it-or-leave it offers … Dagenham or Slough! One 30 miles away the other an East London suburb that could have easily been the fucking moon. Demographics change quickly … Notting Hill was built for the rich bankers City workers then after WW2 left a lot of bomb damage, they all left for the suburbs leaving only the poor parts, the immigrants; Irish, Jocks, Blacks moved in, que 1980s it becomes trendy with younger whites coming back nowadays its back to its upper middle class origins, same as every Capital city in the world .

What was it like moving from that area of West London to Slough back then, culture shock?

No, the whole estate was GLC ‘slum clearance’ the families had moved out mainly in the 60s so the teenagers I went to school with had all been born in London but grew up in Slough, they wore bigger boots, had shorter hair and spoke with harsher London accents than anything I had seen or heard in Latimer Road.

Lol, luckily it was a short journey back into the west end. Slough and Windsor is where you met the Boys Own lot, a mix of football and music. How was Boys Own Fanzine perceived at Chelsea initially?

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Slough had a great soul scene in the mid-70s to early 80’s mainly due to a great DJ called Alan Sullivan who had previously been a main face in the Shed, a few years older than everyone else his nights drew kids from all the estates and areas and helped bring a lot of violence to an end. We sold Boys Own at Chelsea to the lads we hung around with but looking back now, I think we were rather naive and on dangerous ground with some of the cartoons inside perhaps it was down to the respect the lads we went with that helped stop us getting any grief.

It was very left leaning in those early issues did it get sold at Arsenal as well?

No, you couldn’t go to other clubs you would have got a slap, other lads I know bought it from the outlets like American classics in Kings Road and Robot in Covent Garden. A South London lad I knew handed out copies to the Wackers who loved Millwall the dog lol …

Millwall the dog! Haha. I remember it. I liked the Fanzine when the club scene kicked off, also the parties they held, it always kept that slight football link. A lot of Boys Own fanzines took the piss, but it then became the gospel to a lot of bods. For yourselves probably a bit like looking inwards initially observing to being the observed?

It just reflected us and our immediate pals, what we were doing , what slang people were using, coming from the background we did we always loved being scary, some things we did deliberately to see what would happen like this kid from the Roundshaw turned up at spectrum wearing beat up old kickers from the early 80s, the fanzine was ready to go to printers but we stuck in the uppers ‘the kickers revival ‘ A month later the Kicker Shop on the Kings Road had lines outside on a Saturday morning, this actually was one of the reasons we threw in the towel . Andrew said he was 28 and didn’t want to be telling 18-year-olds what to wear! I tried to get a new crew to take it over but they got cold feet.

With Boys Own being very Left Wing. Did yourself and Steve Mayes deliberately set out to stir-it-up at Chelsea?

It was long time ago but obviously Sinn Féin and ANC posters were going to piss people off. The Rangers connection wasn’t so cut in stone back then doubt if we would do it today and get away with it especially with social media spreading news.

I remember the kickers revival! Must have a been about 1989.  So, did the cali’s finish the original football lads in your opinion or was there a bit more to it?

At Chelsea by 87 the 3 main organised firms had all been involved in trials, one lad who went with ‘our lot’ got a life sentence for one incident and that and the club scene kind of killed it except for odd big games. A lot of what you would call ‘the casuals’ were going to things like Norman Jays ‘shake n finger pop’ rare groove warehouse parties. Loads of different groups all smoking weed and doing whizz then 88 came along, after Boro at home May 88 … I never went to a football match until 1994.

Did Shoom have a few ex-football bods come down?

Of course, but Shoom was a club for house-heads some might have been football where as other places like Clink St; Limelight; Centre force affairs were full of football lads. Shoom was a great mix of the young kids from Special Branch over in London bridge (Nicky Holloways party ), West-End trendies, fashion Gays and our crowd who had been the core at the raid club.

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Where did you meet Mr Weatherall?

At a trendy rockabilly Goth type pub in Windsor full of posh girls, then at the Mud club in Leicester Square a few weeks later, Windsor was a much nicer scene than Slough in the early 80s.

His music maybe differed from yours in places? He was a mix of punk and soul boy? Windsor was always cool.

Andrew was and still is into lots of different stuff, he was playing stuff like Lou Reed, New Order, Echo Bunnymen,  tougher industrial electro.

Can you look back now and have a preference between your soul boy clubbing and the acid house onwards clubbing later?

I’ve been lucky enough to have witnessed what I consider 3 Golden periods of London clubbing the Funk / Soul scene of 75 to  77 with its early Punk crossover and great clothing and dancing, the Acid House era of 88 – 90 and the early 2000’s East London scene which was crazy as fuck – I don’t feel they were different though just a continuation of that MOD 1960’s obsession with Black dance music, clothing and pills.

Ok, it’s that time again, give us your top five dance tracks …

This could change hourly but …

1970’s: Brass construction – Moving On.

1980’s: Valentine Brothers  – Money’s to Tight to Mention.

1990’s: De la soul – Roller Skating Jam makes ‘Saturdays’  (david morales 6am mix)

2000’s:  AME – REJ

This week: YUKSEK – I Don’t have a Drum Machine.

Nice one! Top five label garments? …

Levi Vintage, New Balance, Buzz Ricksons’, The Real McCoy’s, RRL

Football clobber 70s / 80s:  Lacoste, Chevignon,  Fiorucci, Ball Jeans, Replay shirts

London for me had the best clubs scene/club nights probably due to the one-off parties. Could you name your best venues in what City?

Up north I loved ‘Back 2 Basics’ the crowd were from all over the north, the DJs always so into the music, they educated that crowd so well and Dave beer is a ultimate club pied piper.
In London so many but I miss The Cross a lot, Scotland it’s definitely Gareth Somerville’s Ultragroove parties in Edinburgh good set of lads, really into House and their clobber.

A few Hibs lads you met at Ultragroove and the Citrus Club? I believe you have a wee soft spot for Hibs up here?

Citrus most certainly mate, ultra, they all seemed to be Hearts. I like both Edinburgh sets of lads and the Motherwell lads at Colours plus the Celtic lads I played for up in Glasgow a few years back.

Yeah, Let’s go Way Back was a top night in Glasgow a crowd Celtic lads were there. Is Faith Fanzine still on the go?

Na, we slung in the towel with Faith the mag as we had covered 90% of what we wanted to.

You’ve done done a few remixes. Primal Scream Loaded among the best. Which one stands out for yourself?

‘loaded ‘ without a doubt – Bobby said it was his fave mix and I warmed up at Amnesia for them a few years ago and he gave me a lovely shout out mid-set. I really didnt know what I saw doing in the studio other than what I wanted – and I wanted a vocal version to stand up to Andrews amazing Dub speacial

Boys Own parties were a thing of legend. Sometimes flanked by the OB, a very mixed crowd, lots of mischief, great music and top people, which is your most treasured memory of those times?

“Flanked by OB” ? they raided us once at Lambeth walk and Cymon was nicked and they nicked the cash. We had pop stars, models,  urchins, criminals, different sexualities and races, my memories were how stressful it was, trying to live up to the hype and expectations.

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How do you see dance music today with the younger bods? Do you prefer doing a gig with our crowd still?

I like playing OLD music to younger crowds and NEW music to mature clubbers.

To finish off … The best DJ of all time is….?

Who I’ve danced to and played his music … Frankie Knuckles

A pleasure to speak to you matey, thanks for popping in.

No worries, cheers.

 

 

 

 

Ins & Outs

Time to bring some ins and outs back into the fold.  What else is there to do on a wet Monday night in February?

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IN

Doing the agadoo whilst foo.

Asking folk if they want a beer or a thick ear?

Broony doing the Broony scoring in the last minute.

Kris Boyds wee face.

Double treble – treble treble.

The Specials new album.

Reading the Morning Star on the morning commuter train.

Steven Gerrard throwing his players under a bus.

Brendan’s big toothy smile.

Bacon fried in coconut oil.

Showaddy- without the –waddy.

Being cool.

Having older friends call Murial.

Ollie Burke.

Asking the Barman for a drink that all the young yin’s are having these days.

Tripping up lads with man-buns.

Tripping up fascists.

Doing the pogo to Yeke Yeke with yer buddies.

Speaking through yer nose on a conference call.

Getting a leg and a wing up the road after a day on the ale.

Ashcroft.

Terry Hall.

Saffiyah Khan.

Avocados.

The Classic Benetton Rugby Top.

Doing the Grand old Duke of York with Murial.

OUT

Drinking Apple Cider every morning through a straw.

Waxy Lemon – fascist roaster.

Last train whoppers.

Last bus whoppers.

Being wedged into a train surrounded by sevconians, rugger bugggers or squaddies.

Man Bun with long beard Hipster types.

Current Buns.

Walking into cob webs first thing in the morning.

People in the workplace asking ‘are you fuck-offee’ when asking if you want a coffee every ten minutes.

Beards, bellies, man buns, shit clobber.

Anything by Meat Loaf.

Black Mutt episodes.

Folk with a ‘price of a pint’ attitude to life.

The price of a chippie.

Gobshites.

Weatherspoons.

Charlie Nicholas.

Socks for fish.

Anyone on Love Island.

Property selling programmes. ‘We only have £350,000 to play around with’ type of folk.

Fish puss’ usually seen in the Kinning Park area.

Kinning Park Rowing Club.

 

 

Thanks for tuning in. Keep on Keeping on and things an that.

 

 

Low

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By Holywell Street and Ste 13th Feb 2019

A bit of a tribute to an iconic album and artist. Holywell Street is honoured that Ste  Carter another Evertonian has contributed to the blog. We welcome him on.

Ste

Obviously, the iconography of the cover to this record is almost without parallel in its influence on certain British ‘80s cultural and social movements.
I remember vividly turning up at Everton games circa ‘80 and seeing lids walking about with THAT fucking haircut and even the odd, cooler than cool cat, matching it with the duffle and going the whole Low hog, as it were.
I’m no chronicler of fashion though, and I don’t pretend it was ever my gig. I was always about the music, man, which is where I’m coming from here.
When Bowie died it was interesting to read amongst my Bowie loving friends which record of his they reached out for. Like my cousin (a much bigger ‘fan’ even than me) I initially reached out for Station to Station, and then Hunky Dory, but it is to this record I returned to time and again, because, for me, at least, it’s the one that seals Bowie’s right to be called a truly great artist.
The first part of Bowie’s Berlin ‘trilogy’ (the record was actually recorded in Paris and re-mixed in Berlin) is a completely remarkable record.
If Bowie killed off Ziggy Stardust on stage, with this record he slays The Thin White Duke persona of the coke-addled rock superstar, in the studio, both spiritually and musically.
This is Bowie’s, burnt out -rock star- kicks- everything- he’s- stood- for- firmly- into- touch, record and therefore sets the template for records like Radiohead’s Kid A.
As one critic correctly said ‘if it had been made 20 years later we could have called it ‘post-rock’.
Gone are the kooky Newley pastiches, the Ziggy glam, the plastic soul (Bowie’s words not mine) and the insane and brilliant ramblings of the Thin White Duke. In their place is a completely Eno driven, new sound and vision.
Low is a record ostensibly in two distinct halves. A brilliant, introspective drum-machined, krautrock influenced first side; lettered with pained and bitter lyrics that subject us to the broken persona he’d become, ‘Don’t look on the carpet; I drew something awful on it’.
It’s complimented by an eerie, yet melodically beautiful and haunting set of instrumentals on side two which show some of Bowie’s musical creativity at new heights, and the heavy pervading influence of his mentor on this record Brian Eno.
The two distinct sides should make the record a little disjointed but somehow they don’t’.
Many Bowie fans will tell you they loved this record on release, and it was a surprise hit, which showed, if nothing else, his legion of fans were prepared to see the script torn up and follow him down musical pastures Neu!
Yet it was released right at the end of the punk explosion and almost at the start of New Wave and was therefore overlooked by many fans and under-appreciated by critics at the time, despite the historical revisionism surrounding it.
If anyone ever tells you they picked up on the cover straight away and went around in ‘77 dressed like that, and with that haircut, if they weren’t scousers, who didn’t anyway, file them away under Billy bullshitters.
Anyway, Low, like nearly all great records, has not only stood the test of time but actually gotten better with age.
Retrospective can be 20/20, and in the light that that sheds this record must be up there as one of the very finest Bowie ever did.

Much obliged Ste Carter.

Gentleman’s Club

By Holywell Street 9th February 2019

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Going with more on our Terrace culture section, we’d like to welcome another contributor to the blog: Scouse Paul an Everton fan and avid connoisseur of his threads who shares a bit with us.

I’ve got to say, it’s always refreshing to know there are still many out there who share the same fervidness for clobber as myself. When these discussions start, it’s kind a like a secret Gentlemen’s club, all reminiscing over the old days. For me personally, it was never about how expensive your clobber was, but about standing out from the crowd, never following others and always looking for that new ‘must have’ label. You only have to look at your modern day footballer or garish celebrity these days to see money doesn’t buy you class, or indeed sartorial elegance…

I started to really get into the casual scene around 93, I was still wearing Reebock jumpers and Adidas trackys at the time but soon began to wear jeans, for one they made you look older (which was always an advantage when it came to attracting girls) plus they just looked better and much smarter. At the match when we moved specs from the Gwladys Street to the Paddock I started to take more notice of what all the older lads were wearing. It was all Lacoste jumpers and jeans with a little eagle on the back pocket. I still didn’t know what they were called at the time but knew I wanted a pair. I can still remember my dear Nanna when she took me shopping on my 14th Birthday and treated me to a Ralph Lauren shirt. I can still remember it now, it had a buttoned down collar with tiny Black & White checks. I loved that shirt as it always reminded of when I first enteted the realms of proper fashion. A few weeks later I started to save up my paper round money (a whole months’ worth) to buy a pair of Armani Jeans. Those jeans were like the ‘Holy Grail’ back then by ours and to own a pair was like a sort of statement of ‘one-upmanship’ with other lads. By this stage I was a full blown clothes-horse and the more gear I bought, the more I wanted…

I’d go to Wade Smith on a Saturday morning and spend hours just looking at all the these shirts and jeans and jumpers and scarfs and walking out wishing I had the money to buy all this stuff. The whole scene was a big motivation in my finding my first ever job as it goes. A few years later I managed to get my first job working in the ‘sorting office’ and would practically spend my entire wages on clothes. This unhealthy and very expensive obsession probably continued until my late 20’s. Obviously now I have other priorities and I haven’t got the disposable income to be buying £500.00 jackets anymore but that passion still remains and I’ll still try and treat myself when I can. I’m still the same now as I was when I was a teenager. Always looking to capture the zeitgeist with that unfound label, being that little bit different from the rest.

 

The Specials, Encore

Review

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By Holywell Street 4th February 2019

The Specials’ first official album since 1980 is a rich collection that covers funk, ska and reggae with good bit of energy.

Though just three of the original band are left, the fitting title ‘Encore’ certainly has hit the headlines with Terry Hall, Lynval Golding and Horace Panter—the album hits many of the group’s original vibe. I like how the piece is talking about mental health, race relations and political disharmony with intelligence and integrity.  The two-tone sound is still in there which is what I’d hoped for and kinda expected. There’s a few songs that are covers including an Eddy Grant number but this politically impeccable.

Elsewhere, 10 Commandments (a feminist riff on a sexist Prince Buster song) is delivered with biting anger, here voiced by guest vocalist Saffiyah Khan, who is widely known for facing down the EDL at a Birmingham protest in 2017.  Personally   I’m loving the fact the activist has been given this platform. The two iconic photos of her at this rally – facing down the EDL bloke and the other of her getting lead away with the Specials t-shirt showing are  deservedly seen as legendary.

The track is a sprawling spoken word reggae jam akin to their global hit Ghost Town and its follow up The Boiler, a harrowing rape narrative fronted by Rhoda Dakar. Though the track updates the sound with intellectual honesty, “Is that what it takes to impress a bloke whose brain is made up of curvy size zero”

One of the reasons that the Specials have been through so many levels most notably the Special AKA, is the format of the band. Conceptually, they are a musical collective, they have combinations sometimes the Special AKA didn’t come over as a band but more a mass group of likeminded people.

The band certainly wear their influences on their sleeves. The track The Life and Times of a Man (Called Depression) is very close to home for a lot of people these days and it certainly is for Terry Hall.

While the album is excellent, it really promotes them as a live act. I didn’t know what to think of the live tracks on there, maybe being unnecessary add-on’s but one imagines a Specials gig in 2019 is just as affecting as it was 40 years ago. Or as Hall puts it, just as “horribly relevant”.

It’s a 10/10 from us.