John W - Thank you for your comments. It was interesting to hear about your experience in the Midlands and I felt reassured by your comments. There was, of course, an age divide in white communities. As a trend, the older found change more difficult to cope with but people work in funny ways. I think there were a lot who had anxieties on a political level but when it came to person-to-person dialogue many naturally engaged. Certainly in my family that wasn't two-faced. It was people meeting people.
I do think that the employment and housing issues were more of a problem. These emerged when I studied race relations as a student and a lot of it was about attitudes in business which were hardly dealt with adequately by governments. In fact, it was governments really who determined that there were certain jobs some might do as others wouldn't. In the East Lane market, everyone did everything and didn't see things in those ways.
We looked at the riots where I studied in the early eighties, stop and search, and so on. I knew Brixton fairly well but by the time I returned to London it was 1985 and so much had changed. I spent many, many, nights just afterwards enjoying gigs at the Academy. I actually miss the days when British people weren't all so similar - some might say Americanized - but obviously not the inequality of rights and it is right that there is increasingly cohesion.
It was almost certainly music, travel and sport that made the difference and, of course, cuisine which the majority embraced. I doubt that change would have been so easy without some of the records on the programme. Steel Pulse - Handsworth Revolution, yes, and later Misty in Roots. These are the weightier works, great, but along the way we had many WI artists here in the pop charts - John Holt, Dandy Livingstone, Pluto Shervington, Ken Boothe - the list is lengthy and I'm sure they all did their bit.
Anyway, I guess it must have been a good programme to get so many thoughts going. Could say so much more as I find it fascinating but I'll leave it here for now. Please give my regards to Mrs W. If you have to have a ringtone, she's got a good'un. Lat.
Last edited by Lateralthinking1; 13-02-11 at 00:54.
I enjoyed this programme enormously.
* the music was very regional in England.For example, Mrs GT missed out, as there was no community in her fishing port.
* At this time me and my pal Tony used to subscribe to the Jamaican Weekly Gleaner so we could see what was going on with the music over there...we also got an amazing insight into the politics and economy there - but, to be honest, that was incidental.
It's still going, online too
* There should have been more on shebeens - I went to a few, quite a life-shaping experience. It was ok though I didn't inhale. :cool2: Oh no, I've just remembered, I did inhale.
* I'm really not sure about the claim re the influence of Jimi Hendrix on dub. I think it was more to do with the bass-heavy influence and the generally spaced-out nature of the musos (see previous point). Could we have a series on Dub Britannia do you think?
* Handsworth carnival is still going, still has a lot of speakers as big as houses and bone-shaking bass and well worth a visit (the food's great as well)...at least it was a few years ago when we last went. The spirit still lives on.
Thank you all - that added loads for me. There is more tonight on beeb four, including what I thought was a really fascinating Storyville film, Rise up Reggae Star, which we talked a bit about back in the days of the old MB.
Next Friday there is also this from the boys on 4 - and about time too.
And don't forget Rocksteady, still available on LA if you missed this treat last night.
Remember rude boys and girls, take it easy, take it calm in a very r3 sort of style obviously
The Toots and the Maytals doc on Beeb4 tonight might have been a bit of a love fest, but I had a smile on my face throughout - one of the great voices - there's a bit where he's driving along singing a bit of Ray Charles - 'I got a Woman way across town' - Class!