James White and DJ Pierre – The first time…

It was around 1987 when James White introduced me to acid house. But even the term barely existed at that point. We were at 163 Caledonian Road, down the canal in King’s Cross. He had DJ decks in the basement – sharing one wall with the mini-cab dispatch office and the other with a ‘studio’ that belonged to Madness. Anyway, James was dropping all sorts of the latest vinyl that he’d just bought from Groove Records in Soho. Groove on Greek Street was the place for all the Chi-Town imports, in those days…

It’d take years for me to realise the significance of DJ Pierre – but there we were, James playing Acid Trax (by Phuture) and me thinking that it was reminiscent of Popcorn by Hot Butter (with Stan Free on Moog) from 1972. Still – it was a very REAL moment and highly memorable. Not least because I shared it with James White – who would later DJ at Coozzz (an early acid night) on Green Lanes for Soph and Chris. I would emcee at Cooozz under the name Mr Love. I would also make flyers for them.

The other significant element was 163 Caledonian Road, where James lived. Other flatmates at 163 included Paul Daley (Leftfield) and Sean McLusky – who would later operate nights like Love Ranch and also run The Brain Club. Sean would become a partner-in-crime, over the years. He also organised the original Trip City book launch party in 1989.