THE TUNE THAT INSPIRED….
During the early days of British electronic music there were some truly groundbreaking tunes being made. Tunes that have led to the birth of other styles, and inspired countless artists in the UK and all over the world. For most of us there’s a long list of tunes that set our world alight but for this series we’re asking our subjects to choose just one track that inspired them on their journey to becoming a full-time junglist...
Kicking us off is our very own Saul Milton, with an impeccable choice.
This really has to be one of the most difficult questions to answer as there are so many to choose from and every day my choice would change.
Today my choice will be DMS & The Boneman X - ‘Sweet Vibrations’.
I must have first heard this tune in 1994 as a 13-year-old and instantly fell in love with everything about it. The different vocal samples, Top Cat’s delivery and the raw energy in the drums and the 808 bass. It was one of many tunes that blew my mind as I’d heard nothing like it before.
It was a surreal moment when we eventually ended up working with Top Cat as his voice had shaped my youth. I play this tune regularly to this day and it still makes me feel like it did back then. Salute to the creators.
How did we all get here? Everyone’s journey has been different but somehow there are aspects of each story that are similar. In the late eighties, so many of today’s jungle heroes happened to stumble across a warehouse party, or a rave, somewhere and found themselves entering a whole other dimension. People of all backgrounds united on the dance floor, dancing like there’s no tomorrow, loving each other and loving life as the DJs played music that sounded like it was from another planet. It was the genesis of an era that we’re still feeling ripples from now. Many of the jungle scene’s pioneers were inspired by that rave scene.
For Bryan Gee, it was the infamous acid house rave at Clink Street, where ‘Evil’ Eddie Richards and Ashley Beedle were holding court. “It was just reggae, funk and R’n’B for me back in those times. I’d never heard acid,” he tells us. “So we went down there and all I heard was this crazy music. When I came out of there I knew I wanted to hear more. At that time it wasn’t really one tune that got me into it though, it was the whole night.”
As Bryan became a fully fledged raver, he hit all the infamous parties around town. Among the early house tracks that really blew his mind was ‘Let The Music Use You’ by Night Writers (AKA Frankie Knuckles). “It wasn’t just acid, it was soulful. I went to Shoom, Danny Rampling’s night, and he was playing it,” he explains. “When I heard the tune, something took over my whole body. I just had this feeling. It was inspirational. If you listen to the lyrics, it’s like, (sings) ‘Let the muuusic taaake you toooo the tooooooop’. It’s one of those really uplifting kinda vibes.”
“The rave was all smokey, and you had the lights and strobes flashing. People were wearing gowns - That’s how people dressed back in the day, hippie-looking with long hair and everything. It had this whole spiritual vibe about it, like a Hare Krishna meeting!” he laughs.
In an era when everything was so new and fresh, the emotions that were evoked by the music had an overwhelming effect on everyone who experienced it first-hand, Bryan included. These formative years set the benchmark for everything that we know now, inspiring countless people to get involved with the rave scene.
“That tune took me into a different zone,” he says. “I was caught up in it and it gave me a special feeling. Whenever I hear it, my hair’s stand up on end and get those tingles. It gives me that feeling like… wow! The vocal, the bassline - it’s a really groovy, spiritual, funky house track.”