|UK hip hop's first recorded live showcase|
|The Original McNally's Ancient |
Britain Article in HHC#205 Oct06
So what’s the weirdest record I own? Peruvian singer Yma Sumac rocking five-octave tonal glissandos over library-style grooves? Nope. Jazz singer Leon Thomas yodelling ‘The Creator Has a Master Plan’ over a carpet of unlistenable free-jazz screeches and squawks? Hell no. Maggotrons’s helium pitched ‘Pillow Talk’ bouncing sex perv sweet-nothings off a bed of erotically bumping 808s and downy duvets of heart flutter synths? Hell no jehri kurl.
The weirdest record I own also has to be one of the best – a record with cover art so confusing, and a title containinng so many sub-clauses, that you’re never quite sure what it’s called. My best bet is ‘Live at the Soul All-Dayer of the Century” – though it could also be called ‘Hammersmith Of The Century Acton 1.187 Sold Out. What is certain, however, is that this live session released on London Reggae label Raiders in 1987 is neither strictly soul, and nor is it reggae.
In fact, recorded at Hammersmith and Acton Town Halls over two days way back at the beginning of 1987, this record is an important historical document that captures London’s nascent hip-hop scene at a key moment of transition – and remember, in terms of recorded hip hop, London’s 1987 was equivalent to about 1982 in New York’s history. It’s certified old school.
|A side of Soul All Dayer Label|
It’s perhaps telling that ‘Soul All Dayer’ came out on a reggae label and Bambaataa’s on one owned by R&B veteran Paul Winley. The black British music economy in the early ‘80s was the reggae economy, just as black New York’s pre hip hop music economy was largely set up around the R&B market. And as the music of Bambaataa’s Death Mix engaged with the R&B tradition, so did ‘Soul All Dayer’ with that of reggae.
|B Side reads "promotion copy not for sale"|
And when DJ Ron – now a successful jungle deejay, but then the lightening fingered scratch master for TNT – drops ‘Planet Rock’ only to cut Pablo Gad’s militant UK reggae perennial ‘Hard Times’ beat-perfect into it – and here we should point out he does so at proper tempo which works out at half-time to ‘Planet Rock’ – the trails to black British music are clear.
|Back cover artwork includes pics of the sound |
system crews and cover artwork for more
Raiders Live releases
Note from Postie: In my two year hunt for a reasonably priced copy of this record I discovered that it was pressed as both a promo and general release. The only discernable difference is that the Promo copy has “Promotion Copy – Not for Sale” clearly printed on the B-Side – other than this both the record and the sleeve are exactly the same on both versions. At the time of writing one copy was for sale on Ebay at a buy it now price of £139.99 with the following information in the item description… “Britain's first soul & hip hop sound-systems. Live recordings from hammersmith & acton town halls 1.1.87 and 24.4.87. Reported to be only 80 copies pressed of which only 12 made it out to the public, the rest went to dj's and producers.” There are none for sale on Discogs so there is no price history but I got my copy for ten quid!!!.
Enjoy the listen – and the inevitable treasure hunt that will follow.
Live At The Soul All Dayer of The Century - side 1
Live At The Soul All Dayer of The Century - side 2