As this week’s live show was handed over to the Pressure Radio Miami event, I take the opportunity to share another moment in time with you, going back to a glorious summer at the turn of the century (ooh, sounds a bit dramatic!).
2 hours of quality UKG, alongside live interviews from some of the scene’s biggest artists, coming from the streets of Ayia Napa. This was The Pre-Release Showcase on Galaxy 102.2 Check out a very enthusiastic Andy Ward on commercial radio, I edited the adverts out of the show.. they weren’t nearly as good as the Choice ones.
Listening back to this gives me fond memories, however it wasn’t long after this wonderful summer that the UKG scene started to take a turn for the worse. The music became darker, too dark in fact, and the MCs became more prevalent and the vibe more sinister. The once clued up crowds also became diluted, with the majority of people only wanting to hear the big tunes of the moment and not prepared to experience any new sounds. I particularly remember one evening when I played a new soulful UKG tune right after “Make your body move” and this girl literally stopped dead in her tracks, looked at me, folded her arms and mouthed in my direction “What the fuck you doing?” It was time for me to move on.
On reflection, I feel I have come full circle some ten years later, now turning my back on the “Big Room” scene that I became a part of in recent years. There was a time where I embraced the challenges of playing slightly outside my box to these large crowds… you know the rest, right !