What Delboy really is about is music. Music is what I am. Music is my diary and my memory. It would seem to me that I was able to develop a rather good memory through the discipline of listening to gigabytes of music for umpteen years. I have the uncanny ability to produce humungous amounts of information about related subjects (of concern) without much effort.
Since about 1978 through 1986 I bought way too many records (sorry mum). Through that collection, I can almost position in my recollection what was taking place in my life - simply by playing a track. Any track can invoke joy and another pain and tears.
For several years I also maintained what was then known as the "Bog Roll Top 20". Since I had such a large record collection of Jazz-Funk-Soul and R&B stuff, and a lot less lunch money, and I read Record Mirror and the other, way-out sheets, my friends would often ask me to cut a tape for them of what was new and hot. They had a similar taste in music, which helped!
So once, as I was asked to say what was new and hot, I took to the idea of writing down a "chart" to document it. However, I was severely lacking in writing materials so I wrote the listing down on tissue paper. I then cut the tape accordingly and sent the tape and tissue on to my friends. Several weeks later I found that the tape and tissue paper accompanying it had made the rounds - in fact made the rounds to many people - some of whom I did not even know.
But, all of the recipients loved the access to import tracks that were hot on the local dance floors. In fact, several of the tracks were so new that this list had given them access to a source of new material from which to purchase from! The "Bog Roll Top 20" expanded to a complete chart listing of about 60 tracks in its heyday - although I still only issued 20 tracks on a single audio cassette.
Prelude 12" - remember them?
Sharon Red, D Train, Visual, and others came this way...
From this event, I realized I had something. For a year of more I then went on to regularly issue a Bog Roll Top 20 - tape and tissue - to my friends. Looking back, it was a hot import listing of dance tracks that was far superior to what was then available in the UK press. Record Mirror was almost the best there was as they did dedicate some space to lists the market gossip. But they were still far too commercial and did not cater for the real stuff. So the lists I have from those days show tracks that have come and gone; some went on to be major hits in the clubs; some went on to crossover into the national charts. I particularly remember a couple of tracks that I "spotted":
Record Shops that I used to Frequent:
What my Week used to Look like:
PS. There is but one person who is know by "Creature" and it was because of her that I created that name of tapes.
Radio Shows that mattered:
The Carpet Crew was a fabled group of friends that would sometimes congregate in and around the Aylesbury area and its clubs. In time fame and fortune took the group to Hemel, Berko, Luton, Dunstaple and so on. Clubs all over would welcome the Caret Crew as a discerning clientele. When the Carpet Crew arrived, a certain quality of dance music was expected. If it was delivered, the Crew stayed. If the music did not come up to scratch, the Crew moved on. The Crew itself was a fluid bunch of guys and girls - some good friends, some just acquaintances. At some point the Crew consisted of the following people:
The reason why we were called the Carpet Crew is that we would dance in the corner of the clubs, on the nice carpet, and not on the dance floor where everyone else would dance.
I remember many, many nights driving in snow and fog 30 mils to go to Luton with Andy, Furdi and Christine all huddled up in the back of a Fiat 127 (don't tell anyone but it had a hole in the floor)! Those were the days...
Delboy February 2001