Saturday, 7 March 2015

The Holy Grail Of Wild Style

I recently had a message from a good friend in the ABU crew - Dayle Dickson, who represents the Boogie Down Under chapter - telling me he had something in his possession that was so mind-blowing, it was almost beyond comprehension.
Being that I am an avid fan of the film Wild Style this was something that immediately made me sit up and take notice.
What follows is Dayle's story.
Open this link up in another tab, press play and then read on.....

Right before the story begins here’s a little history on how i became a Wild Style collector.
I have always loved the movie, music and that cover artwork since the mid to late 80’s when getting into the hip hop scene.
I think it is that iconic artwork by Zephyr, Revolt and Sharp on the cover that really got me hooked though. It is so recognisable any where you seen it.
I’ve had my original copy of the soundtrack vinyl since back then but only recently in the last few years have I seriously started collecting bits & pieces.
I have been very lucky to find some of the things I have that include a sealed copy of the U.S cassette, a lot of Japanese items including original flyers, VHS tapes and a Japan VHD disc, a Japan promo copy of the Wild Style Theme Rap and another super rare Japan item being the 1983 Wild Style tour cassette and 70-page cut & paste insert booklet that was available when the movie was toured there.

But nothing was going to prepare me for this find.
Here’s how it all went down….

So its Thursday night after dinner, not much on TV and I'm sitting on the couch with my laptop surfing the web when I decide to check my usual saved Want list of items.
One of those items being the Animal Records Wild Style soundtrack test pressing.
I was searching on Discogs and I hadn’t checked for a few days so I was stunned to see one available when I looked.
I had only seen one other available on Ebay about a year ago and it sold for $220 I think it was.
The Discogs one listed said it came from an ex-Def Jam/Tommy Boy record executive’s collection.
As per-usual I was skint till payday and couldn’t just buy it there and then.
Even though it was roughly half the price of the one I’d seen sell on Ebay I wanted to see pictures of it before I dropped the $$ down.
I emailed the seller asking if I could see some photos to which I got a reply almost immediately saying "Yeah man, I’ll do it tomorrow as we are an actual record store in New York and its busy now".
I went to bed that night thinking its bound to be sold by time I get up in the morning but to my amazement it was still there the next morning when I checked before I went off to work.
Later in the day I get the email from them saying “Here you go, brother” with the two photos pictured below.

As you can see in the pictures above the vinyl had that aged look to it and in pen it had written on the sleeve Animal Records Test Pressing APE 6005ST which is correct for the soundtrack vinyl.
I immediately got hyped and thought to myself, "I have to get this!".
As I still didn’t have the money yet I started to weigh up options so I decided to sell a couple of things I had that I knew I could get some fast cash for to some good friends I know that wanted these things I had.
So the first deal was done and I had half the money I needed.
I messaged the seller back and he agreed to take it off Discogs and we would work it out over Paypal.

I had it and I was happy as Larry.

Now I know a couple of hip hop test press collectors and I messaged one asking about any markings that differed from the normal soundtrack pressing from the test pressing as I told him I’d just bought this one and sent him the two photos I had gotten from the seller.
His immediate reply was that the record in the photos has 7 tracks on the A-side where as the soundtrack LP only has 6 tracks on the A-side.
At first i thought I’d been duped, but he then followed up with…
"I think you may have just bought a copy of the Wild Style Instrumental Breakbeats Test Pressing"
I was stunned!
I replied, "you mean the one from the movie that the DJ’s got?", as in the 100 Charlie Ahearn and Fab 5 Freddy pressed up according to the Kenny Dope book I had recently gotten.
To which he said yes and asked "where is this?".
I said "I think I’ll keep that to myself, no offence".
He laughed.

So by now my head was just going a million miles an hour on getting the rest of the money to pay for the record and getting it sent as quick as possible to me before someone in this record store figured out what it really was.
So another deal was done and I had more than enough to cover it which I did post haste.
The next day I got the tracking number and the wait was on.

So finally after the longest 2 weeks of my life it seemed it finally arrived at my house while I was at work.
Fortunately my partner was home and I asked her to open it and tell me what was in the run-out grooves as I knew if it didn’t have the APE 6005ST then it was definitely something different to the soundtrack vinyl that the record store thought they had sold me.
My partner told me all it has is 719A on the A-side and 719B on the B-side and that's it.

I still had no idea if it was the real deal but I did know I could write to Charlie Chase who I was friends with on Facebook and ask him as I had heard he still has his copies and ask him what his had in the run-out grooves.
But before i got home home from work to do so my partner sends me a link to this blog below.

She had done a simple Google search of "Wild Style Test Pressing 719".
Whoa! I had never seen this blog before but was so glad when I did as it was a wealth of knowledge and confirmed for me that I did in fact have the real deal.

So, after the longest afternoon I got home and finally held this grail in my hands.
The vinyl is pretty much near mint condition as it comes from a collection and I don’t think has been played at all really.
I cleaned it as it has 30 years of dust on it and gave it one spin both sides and now it will just sit on the shelf with my other stuff.
One day I intend to frame it.

I did write back to the seller asking who’s collection it came from once I had it.
They replied and told me but I will keep that to myself.
All I will say he was quite important in the music video side of the hip hop scene.

So there you have it.
It's the one record that in my opinion is the epitome of my Wild Style collection and my entire collection as a whole.
There are still many Wild Style pieces out there that I know of that I still want but nothing I think will top this.

One thing I’d like to end this story on is that I strongly believe in karma when collecting.
Lately I have helped out a few people in getting pieces for their collections and I like to think that this record came to me as a result of that.
Also thank you to anyone that has helped me with getting things for any of my collections (you all know who you are).

Lastly thanks to Repo for letting me share this story on here. Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did telling it.


A huge thank you to Dayle for sharing this amazing story with us here at ABU. I'm sure anyone reading will agree that this is such a significant piece of hip hop history. Next time you watch the movie have a closer look at the Dixie scene. Is that Dayle's copy spinning on the turntable?!

See also:


Tufkut said...

..soOOOo many pieces to fall into place for this Dig to happen, what if?... and it all could have not ended up in Dayle's collection. Many thanks for sharing as it's nice to hear the backstory as I have had (and many others I can bet too) my own thoughts on getting pieces ..or just missing out on them. Makes Digging a joy-HappyDiggin' ...(", )

Anonymous said...

Great story, and what a great find! Steve B.

#GR2GR said...

Producer I.N.T. remixed the movie "Wild Style" for the Doubletalk festival "Wildstyle edition" with special guests: Charle Ahearn, Fab 5 Freddy, Chiefrocker Busy Bee, DJ Grandwizard Theodore, Crazy Legs and Mr Freeze @ Paradiso, Amsterdam, Holland january 2009
more info:

I.N.T aka Percy La Rock


Anonymous said...

Excellent post AND find, props.
I'm assuming the 'Music Video' reference as to whom the vinyl once belonged intimates 'Ralph McDaniels' of 'Video Music Box' fame. Or I might be reading too much into it and it could easily be Doctor Dre, Ed Lover, T-Money, Fab 5 Freddy or David 'Kid' Jensen.

The Goosemeister. XXXX

Patti Astor said...

This is the perfect ABU story as it illustrates that with his brilliant group Repo 136 HAS found that sweet spot where Hip Hop feels good again. I'm sure Dayle Dickson agrees. Really exciting narrative!! Dayle let me in on the secret so I was getting up every day thinking "surely the mail has come in OZ by now ??"
"Wild Style" continues to be one of the greatest experiences of my life and we have the coolest fans in the world.
Congrats Ben & Double-D!!
XX Patti "A"

rchecka said...

You got some incredible collectables Dayle, and it goes without saying that I am very jealous of you for getting that test pressing at a nice price. I was offered it recently at $1000 but I couldn't bite on that kind of price despite my completionism chemical imbalance I have with Wild Style records.

I'll be happy to cross post this from my Wild Style Completisms blog post, thanks for contacting me!


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