Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Dennis Bovell and Studio 80, SE1

Thanks to Music Like Dirt's musical map of London , I have come across another South London musical landmark: Dennis Bovell's Studio 80 at 6/8 Emerson Street, London SE1. Bovell is renowned as a musician, producer and sound engineer who started out with UK reggae outfit Matumbi.

In 1979 he produced Janet Kay’s lovers’ rock hit Silly Games, and maybe it was the proceeds that helped him open the studio the following year (I am guessing from the name it opened in 1980). According to Roots Archives, reggae albums produced there by Dennis Bovell included his own Brain Damage (1981), Janet Kay’s Capricorn Woman (1982), I Roy’s Outer Limit (1983) and Linton Kwesi Johnson’s LKJ in Dub Vol.2 (1983) and Making History (1984). But Bovell has also worked with lots of non-reggae musicians, just about everyone in fact - The Slits, The Thompson Twins, Bananarama, Fela Kuti, Dexy's Midnight Runners, Edwin Collins and Ryuichi Sakamoto. Of these I have so far only confirmed that the latter’s B-2 Unit was recorded there in 1980, which of the others graced the streets of SE1 remains to be seen.

There’s also Dennis Bovell’s Brockley connections with Lovers Rock, but that will have to wait for another post.

1 comment:

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