Monday, 22 February 2010

Keep Plastic People Alive

There are many people who are a lot better to talk about the legendary Plastic People than me, however I do have one memory I'd like to share. 

For more information join the 'Keep Plastic People Alive' Facebook group here and read the debates and memories from Laurent Fintoni here, Mr Trick here and Ali Augur and Charlie Dark here.

Personally, the night I first heard of this club with "possibly the best little club with the best soundsystem in the country" was on this Gilles Peterson and Jazzanova show from 2001. It stuck out for me because it was the first time I heard "That Night" which was my favourite track of the decade (I know - a bit controversial but that's a debate for another day!). Since then, they seem to have every big name and at-that-time not yet a big name down there. Four Tet's residency last year directly inspired his recent, already album of the year contender LP, the track named after the club and this mix.

Below is the Radio 1 page from the day with a feature on London clubs and record shops and even I notice one or two names aren't there anymore - it would be a shame to lose another. 

Listen to it all again now: Gilles Peterson with Alex Jazzanova 11th April 2001 (Worldwide  One Live In London) 
Tracklisting at the bottom of the page

Gilles Peterson @ Plastic People, Shoreditch
Gilles and Alex Jazzanova
On Wednesday 11th April 
Gilles opened this year's 1 Live In London with his show at Plastic People in Shoreditch, with special guest, Alex Jazzanova. They both played storming sets which went out live on Radio 1 to a lively and friendly crowd. We dived into the sea of faces and found out where some of the choice spots are in London for record buying andclubbing:
Robbie Bear
Name: Robbie Bear From: West London Favourite Record Shops:
Honest John's in Portobello Rd. It's great for old school Jazz Records and dance Music, there's a good balance in there. 
Favourite Clubs:
That's How It Is at Bar Rumba, and Co-Op at the Velvet Rooms.

Norika & Adspuko
Name: Norika & Atsuko From: Holloway (via Japan) Favourite Record Shops:
Vinyl Junkies in Berwick St & Release The Groove. 
Favourite Club:
The Vibe Bar in Brick Lane because the people are so friendly.
Name: Ranx From: Hoxton Favourite Record Shops:
Small Fish on Old St, it's one of the few shops that stock a really wide range of stuff. 
Favourite Clubs:
Transit @ Plastic People because of the music policy. Hoxton Pimps, which moves around from month to month, is the best thing in London at the moment.

Matthew, Alicia & JoName: Matthew, Alicia & Jo From: Paddington Favourite Record Shops:
Reckless in Islington & Spin City in Paddington for House & Garage. 
Favourite Clubs:
Opium in Soho.
Steven & JacquiName: Steven & Jacqui From: Whitechapel / Aldgate Favourite Record Shops:
Select-A-Disc, Berwick St - they're very helpful, Mr Bongos in Soho. 
Favourite Clubs:
Hullabaloo at The Rhythm Factory - great visuals & old house music; and Cargo.
Earl Zinger (and friend)Name: Earl Zinger Favourite Record Shops:
City Sounds in Holborn for Eighties jazz funk; Bluebird; The Goldmine in Canvey Island 
Favourite Clubs:
Attica Blues' night at Plastic People, Co-op at The Velvet Room, Secret Waltz at various venues.
Valerie Etienne

Name: Valerie Etienne Favourite Record Shops:
Soul Jazz Records in Ingestre Place, Ray's Jazz Shop on Shaftesbury Avenue 
Favourite Clubs:
Co-op on Sunday, and That's How It Is on Monday.

Alex Jazzanova pick up those hot tunes!Name: Alex Jazzanova Favourite Record Shops:
"It's very, very sad that my favourite shop has closed - Atlas Records. That was a nightmare for me, somebody told me today that Atlas was closed and I was like, "Oh s***", because Peter was my favourite man in London - such good taste and always nice records from underneath the counter, special ones for me, and that was perfect.

"There's another shop I really like - Release The Groove. Behind the counter is a real character - J-C from Amalgamation of Soundz. It's fun to go there, it's not that deep like in Atlas, but there's a very good selection. I really like to buy old records as well, so I go to Honest John's and Intoxica. London's good! That's one of the reasons I like London so much, because you can go round and buy music everywhere, and to be honest, I prefer to go to record and tape exchanges, because all the boring house DJs, they take in all the promos they don't like, and they're things that I do like! Stuff they can't deal with, broken beats or whatever, so you find things very early there - promo copies that they sell."
AlexFavourite Clubs:
"I really liked the early days of Bar Rumba on Mondays for That's How It Is. Today there are really to many tourists in there, so the scene isn't really there. I really like Co-op at The Velvet Room, with Dego and the whole West London posse. There you can feel that there will be something new, like two-step was and drum & bass was - the whole jazzy soulful broken beat thing is growing, and it's nice to see how it grows.

"I really like this club (Plastic People), and the owner Aday, was the first one who invited us to London to play. That was three years ago, when it was at Oxford Street. At this time, it was the second twelve inch we'd brought out, 'Caravelle' - a little hit in London! - and we played there, and we really enjoyed the reactions. Berlin is always different - everybody is standing in the corner say, "Ah, interesting", and London is more about people going out dancing. That's what we like, because we like to play dance music."
Gilles on the decksName: Gilles Peterson Favourite Record Shops:
"The shop I really like going to, because I like standing about in there and hanging out, which is what record shops are also meant to be about, is a shop called Soul Jazz in Ingestre Place. I love the people who work there, and I can hang out there all day. I like Release The Groove records, Honest John's in Ladbroke Grove, I used to like Atlas in Archer Street, but they closed down - that was a shame because it was a really good shop.

"I really like Vinyl Junkies in Berwick Street. It's a really brilliant shop, my favourite shop at the moment, because they're really happy to work in there, they're really into selling records, and they're really enthusiastic about it. Some shops are just a little bit cynical, they've been at it just a little bit too long, they're frustrated DJs, the guys who work in the shops. Vinyl Junkies is my current tip."
Do they set aside stuff for you?
"Not really, I don't get extra special service. I don't really like it when they do that. I like to go in and just listen to stuff and pick it out. Some shops pull stuff out for me, which is useful, because they know what I like and they help me, but I do make an effort. Record shopping is a very important part of my week. It's part of the culture of what I do, and as many records as I receive every week, and I get hundreds of records sent to me, I still have to go to the shops and just get into that atmosphere. It's as important to me as going to clubs and Djing in clubs because it's all about the communication and the vibe of the shop. I also have lots of little specialist places that I won't tell you about!
GillesFavourite Clubs:
"I come here on a Friday sometimes, for the Attica Blues Blue Print Sessions. I go to Co-Op sometimes, at The Velvet Room, that's a good little night. I've been going to quite a lot of clubs recently. I like to check out what's going on."

"I went to Ministry of Sound the other day, and had a really good time. Kenny Dope was playing, and Bobbi & Steve, and it was really refreshing going there. Ironically it was nice to go there, because there were no pretentions. Certain clubs in London are so cool, they've got such a style magazine reputation, and with that you get a trendy sort of crowd. They're not normally the best crowds. So going to Ministry, which is a pretty sort of unfasionable place in that sense was really refreshing, because it was a really urban, mixed crowd, which is why I like living in London. That was a real shock to me. It was such a shock that I'm going to do a residency there later on this year, as a sort of ironic twist on clubbing in the year 2001!"

Gilles Peterson
Bugge Wesseltoft - 'Changes' (Universal(White))
Block 16 feat. Jhelisa Anderson - 'Find an Oasis' (NuPhonic (White))
DJ Gregory - 'Block Party' (White)
Osunlade - 'Ocho' (Soul Jazz White) 

Alex Jazzanova
Blaze - 'Get Up' (Motown)
King Britt Presents Sylk 130 feat. Capitol A - 'All the Way' (Live) (Six Degrees)
Voom Voom - 'Ginger & Fred'  (Compost)
Jazzanova - 'That Night' (Acetate)
Frank Zaffa - 'By Garsaaidi'   (Orange Egg)
Underwolves - 'In The Picture' (BBE)
Eternal Sun - '6/8 Drumz' (Pathless Remix) (Talkin' Loud)
Vikter Duplaix - 'Messages' (acapella) (MAW)
Victor Davis - 'Sound Of The Samba' (Afro Gigolo/JCR)
Zito Righi - 'Berimbeau' (Hot)
Plaid - 'Scoobs In Columbia' (white)
Nebraska/ Russ Gabriel - 'My Father'   (Player)
Izm - 'Outa Space' (Meitz Remix)  (White)
Unknown - 'Spritual' (Late nightclub dub) (Papa)
E.W. Wainwright - 'The Healer' (Beatless remix) (Ubiquity)
Unknown - 'Untitled'  (White)
Jazzanova - 'To Come'   (Acetate)
Bahamadia - 'I Confess' (EMI)
Phoojun - 'Rainbow' (BBE)
Gilles Peterson
Petalo 86 - 'Este Lado' (Novaphonic)
Cara - 'O Sapo' (RCA Victor)
Big Bossa - 'Carnival Espirito' (Viktor)

Words & Photos: Helen Pendlebury / Zoe Fletcher 

Edit: Just found I have a set from Kode9 and Flying Lotus from FWD at PP from last year which I'll stick up in a bit too.

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