Barbados-born Dennis Bovell is Britain’s greatest ever reggae producer. Moving to the UK as a 12-year-old, by the time he became a teenager he was already heavily involved in the London music scene. As a musician he was experimenting with loops and also the use of sound frequencies in the cutting room, as well as running various bands and sound systems. His first significant group, Matumbi, which also included long-time collaborator Nick Bailey (aka Straker), patented a unique reggae sound that on songs like Point Of View managed to incorporate swing and somehow make it work.
Bovell was instrumental in a new British reggae sound, Lovers Rock, that lured the girls back to the dance as well as delivering a no. 2 hit for Janet Kay with Silly Games. His work as a producer brought him to the attention of dub-mad acts like all-girl group, The Slits, for whom he produced two albums, as well as working with the Pop Group, Madness, Orange Juice as well as a long-term relationship with dub-poet Linton Kwesi Johnson.
We're delighted to host a night of conversation and music with Dennis and the author, journalist and DJ, Bill Brewster. Bass is guaranteed.
Spiritland Talks: Dennis Bovell in conversation with Bill Brewster