Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Hip Hop Connection Magazine - Issues #2 & #3

"Get Ready For A Hype '89"

Issue #2

I've left a bit of a longer-than-antipcipated pause between posting the next issue of HHC so to make up for it I'm putting up a double.

KRS One adorns this issue's cover as he chills in his militant, pro-X gear straight outta Dan Dapper.
The Jungle Brothers and Salt 'n' Pepa as well as the homegrown, Cookie Crew all give a great smattering of the diversity that was typical of late 80s hip hop.

Normski kicks off the set as is what is becoming a regular slot with some immersive everyday photos of hip hop 'slebs in their natural habitat. And, hmmmm, whatever happened to The Fly Girls?
A short chat with the Coldcrush Brothers at the time of their Feel The Horns album and mentions of the best club venue, "The Autobahn"(surely the Audubon Ballroom?) and news of the beginnings of the Stop The Violence Movement.
A four-page spread devoted to The Artful Dodger is never a bad thing. He was probably the first UK writer that a lot of us remember, quite possibly due to his Weetabix campaign in 1985.

The super-sexily-voiced Malu Halasa interviews Overlord X as he tries to get his point across about violence in hip hop and football hooliganism. There's a feature of UK independent record labels (Rhythm King, Music of Life...) and Daddy Freddy & Asher D introduce 'Ragamuffin Hip Hop' to the world.
There's a great mini-feature of all the top names of UK rap in 1989 with a group posse shot featuring such luminaries as the Demon Boyz, No Parking MCs, Ruthless Rap Assassins as well as many others. A really historical moment.

Dave Pearce

For those of us living in the south of England, Dave Pearce was an authority on hip hop as he broadcasted out of GLR (formerly, Radio London) with his show A Fresh Start To The Week each and every Monday night. Check him out in his oh-so-fresh varsity jacket and obligatory cap. This was of course before he jumped ship and became Mr Trancey McTranceface.

Cookie Crew! Original Concept! Don Baron! Where else would you have ever found interviews with these people..in print...in 1989?! We mustn't forget this.

A few albums get the review treatment ("In Full Effect") by HHC journos Lee Holding, Hannah Ford and the aforementioned, Malu 'Hubba Hubba' Halasa.
Incidentally I once bought a big box of A4 biographies and promo photos from Lee Holding. I remember one particular bio on an upcoming group called Public Enemy. The headshots of one Cutmaster DC are wonderful - JerhiCurl-tastic.
Interesting in one review of Steady B's Let The Hustlers Play that Mr Holding points out that our very own Mike Allen gets a shout out on the back cover and asks "..where is Mike now?". And this was in 1989.

This issue features the first readers' letters. Some quite well thought-out points made as well as a lovely likkle letter from 9-year-old, Allen - "Yo! I love Hip Hop Connection because I love hip hop!!". Bless.

Who remembers General George of 4 Star General in Camden? He's featured amongst other fashionable shops in the nation's capital.
Followed by a Real Roxanne interview - who bizarrely made it to the UK Fresh 86 lineup because Shante caught chickenpox?! - and bookended by a roundup of '88 and predictions of the year to come this completes the very second issue of Hip Hop Connection.

Oh and a pull-out, centre-pages poster of Professor Griff in full military garb (phwoooar) for all you hardcore hip hop militants out there. But then, as a teenager back then who among us wasn't?

DOWNLOAD ISSUE #2 OF HHC HERE



"All The Way Dope"

Issue #3

April '89 marked issue #3 of Hip Hop Connection.
KRS makes the front cover (again) and continues the magazine's love affair with the Blastmaster.
Richie Rich is there, too. I do loves me some Richie.
Normski steams the set with his gorgeous shots - has he ever produced a coffee table book? Why not?
I really do need to step my game up with my scanning technique. I've noticed a few blurry bits. I'm on it for next month, Scout's honour (I was a Scout for 3 weeks, therefore it still stands).

Many of last issue's top UK rap heads get to air their views and discuss what HHC should actually contain and it seems that the priority should be more UK-based stuff, funnily enough.
Anglophile, Chuck D blurts, "You English kids do a better job of covering rap than anyone in my country".
There's a news snippet of when Hijack were on the cusp....the cusp... of signing up to a major label courtesy of Ice T. The photo shows DJ Supreme aka Soops looking as dope as ever and K-Sly (sans afro) right next to him. Never again, eh lads?

Remember those indie-rocking skate punks, Jesus Jones who were on the waaaay out side of the spectrum of alternative hip hop back in those experimental 80s? There's a thankfully brief chat with them as they place palm to face and dig a huge hole explaining that "dissing" in hip hop is really nothing more than just plain paranoia. Well, it's not but thanks for your contribution, chaps.

Everyone's favourite female London emcee, Monie Love - to paraphrase Derek B, 'is she a Yankee? Nah, she's a Londoner....who thinks she's a Yankee' - talks us through her brief history while Dave Funkenklein (RIP) gives us the lowdown on the latest happenings on the West Coast of the Yoo Ess Ay.

There's a nice piece on Fab 5 Freddy as he talks about his part in the history of hip hop and explains the gist of the recent My Philosophy music video and Yo! MTV Raps.
Incidentally, am I imagining this or did one or more members of The London Posse happen to appear in that BDP video? Answers on a postcard, plz.

This month's pull-out poster is KRS One looking like he has just been offered his favourite Skittle flavour - orange. Print it out and stick it on ya bedroom wall, ya retro freaks, ya.
Tru-Funk Posse

Oh how times have changed. Richie Rich is accused of being a "Yuppy" simply because he is holding a mobile phone ("vodeaphone"). Well he was the (part) owner of Gee Street which was actually a pretty credible label at the time.

A return to the readers' letters and there's a prize tome from one "Jon Scott" who comes across like a twat, if I'm being honest, and goes on to dis a 9-year old kid - Allen from the last issue - the absolute cad.
There's also news that HHC will begin to print some Pen Pals letters. Now THAT sounds like a great idea!

Be careful, Professor Griff is fuming and can't wait to infiltrate our ear canals with politics and religion. Better keep going to the next page where the Bristol scene is looked at in-depth.
Wrapping up this month is a look at the 1989 DMC World Mixing Championships where Cutmaster Swift just pipped the post and beat favourite DJ Aladdin to win the golden Technics.

DOWNLOAD ISSUE #3 OF HHC HERE

6 comments:

Steve said...

Ah, Fresh Start To The Week... Memories of constant redialling from my bedroom on our old rotary phone to enter the rap phone-in each week, trying to time it so the last digit was ready to dial as they opened the phone line... Meeting Dave Pearce in the Radio London studio to pick up my winning copy of Hip Hip Electro 14... Inventing new rap names each week, cos they wouldn't let you enter the competition again if you'd won before... Happy times.

Repo said...

Excellent, Steve!
What name(s) did you go under and did you manage to record any onto tape?

Unknown said...

Mate just love your site. Had all the copy of HHC and mum chucked em when I moved out haha. Been after the article in one of them to do with JV tracksuit any chance of a post please. Cheers bruv.Nathan.

Steve said...

I don't think I have any of the phone-ins but I ended up doing three sessions in their studio which I have on tape still - all under different names (which get progressively more embarrassing each time): MC Beat, MC Rocking B, and (to my eternal shame!) Private Enemy. What was I thinking?! Makes me shudder even now!

Repo said...

Don't get me started on names. I went through many and yes, as great as I thought they were they are just cringeworthy now (MCB -homage to MCA; DJ Beatdown and Kid Kaos to name a few).

Those names alone make me want to hear your efforts even more. If you ever feel like sharing I'd be glad to listen.

Repo said...

Hey Nathan,
Do you know which issue that article appeared in? If I've got it I'll scan it.

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