Monday, September 20, 2021

Music Monday: Broadside Hacks

Broadside Hacks is a new 'London-based collective committed to the celebration and perpetuation of folk music', with a great new album out, 'Songs Without Authors Vol.1'.  The collective have been doing a folk session at Skehans (Kitto Road SE14) and a video for one of the tracks - Willie of Winsbury by Katy J Pearson & Maudlin - was filmed at the Rivoli Ballroom in Crofton Park. 

Some of the performers have previously been more associated with 'indie' acts such as Sorry or Goat Girl - the latter's ex-bassist Naima Bock contributes one track. They say: ' The marvel of Folk music is, in our view, its ability to find relevance in all times and places, while remaining essentially local. Broadside Hacks believe the old songs can still be relevant – that in the ancient melodies and words about past times can be found truths about today. If you want proof, revisit one of the albums that introduced them to folk – Liege and Lief – and hear songs that could be drawn from today’s headlines, about honour killings, about class, about lives forced into certain directions for want of the choices wealth brings. In 2021, to so many people folk just means “someone with an acoustic guitar”. Songs Without Authors is not that: it is music rooted in a place that has grown to encompass something universal'.


Monday, September 13, 2021

Croydon racist protest outnumbered

A small far right anti-refugee protest in Croydon was outnumbered by opposition on 4th September. Only around 20 racists got it together to turn up at Lunar House (Home Office UK Visas and Immigration HQ), where they complained about being let down by the no shows and being surrounded by anti-fascists numbering between 150-200.

Far right protest on right of picture, anti-fascists on left

'Croydon resists racism... Look around you. Croydon is not full, in fact the only thng it is full of are empty buildings! Yet still people are living on the streets. Our community has the resources to look after refugees alongside people who already live here' 

London Anti Fascist Assembly banner


Sunday, September 05, 2021

Dub London - nights of raving

'Dub London: Bassline of a city' closed last week at the Museum of London, a small exhibition documenting the impact of reggae sound system culture in the capital. Exhibits included a speaker stack from Channel One sound system, photographs and a vinyl selection provided by London reggae record shops.

 Naturally, South East London featured prominently, with references to the New Cross Fire, the Battle of Lewisham, Jah Shaka and Lewisham's Saxon Studio International sound system.  There was a film of Mad Professor in his Ariwa studio - currently in White Horse Lane SE25, previously in Gautrey Road SE15 (where the recently departed Lee Scratch Perry visited and recorded in the 1980s).

Photo of Saxon Sound in exhibition - taken at Lewisham Riverdale Centre in 1982 it includes Maxi Priest (also Lezlee Lyrix now Prof. William Lez Henry)

My favourite bit was a wallpaper of flyers, many of them from Saxon parties in the 1980s. Lots of South London venues featured in this including:

The Eve Pool Club, 13 Upper Brockley Road Parade

Lewisham Boys Club, 1-9 Horton Street SE13 ('A Saturday Night Jamboree' in May 1982)

Deptford Crypt [St Pauls Church], February 1982 with Saxon, Young Lion and 'Revolutionary A1 sound from Lewisham'.

Club Harmony [aka Harmony Hall], Childers Street, Deptford - Fe.b 1982 'Night of Raving' with Saxon and Sir Coxsone Outernational 

New Moonshot Club, Fordham Park SE14, July 1982 with Saxon and Nasty Rockers from Brixton

51 Lewisham Way - 'Night of Cool Runnings' in March 1982

Dick Sheppard Youth Centre, Tulse Hill SW2

Temple 62, Railton Road SE24 ('Wanna have ah Nice Time? STEP-it down ah Front Line!' with Saxon and Front Line International in 1983)

Late Night Cruise on a boat from Greenwich Pier (the MV Swanage Queen) in June 1982

22 Clyde House, Sumner Road, Peckham

Would be great to hear memories of these nights and others like them.