Back in the Daze – Part 2: Lesson One
Back in the Daze – Part 1: Jungle Roots
Eventually, Fougy re-established a weekly presence back at The Spot called Sessionz. From 1997-1998 Sessionz was Boston’s premiere Jungle/DrumnBass night with residents at different times including Timestretch, Casper, G White (myself, now G Notorious), Static, Stareyes, Mike Spears, and Al Fougy himself, and MCs including Mike D, Rumble and Bludshot.
The night brought in some of the biggest names in Jungle and DrumnBass (as it was rapidly becoming called); Ed Rush and Optical, DJ SS, LTJ Bukem, Kemistry & Storm, and Grooverider among many, many others. By this time, particularly the night when Lady Miss Kier of Deelite came to town to play a Jungle set, the night was massively outgrowing The Spot and started venue hopping.
It moved to places like Joy (later became Felt, now closed), back to The Spot, briefly the Landsdowne Playhouse (which was buried somewhere in the labyrinth of Landsdowne St, with the night also taking on the tentative title “The Jiggly Room”), back to The Spot again, and then finally to Karma Club on Landsdowne. This new venue was a much bigger final home fit for the size for the crowds and the hype surrounding DrumnBass in Boston in 1998. Sessionz also moved from Sunday to Wednesdays briefly, then eventually settled on Thursdays. The sound had exploded, pulling in crowds of hundreds every week! Static had opened 4Front Records on Newbury St and quickly went from import dance music to strictly selling only DrumnBass vinyl. The owners of Boston Beat, (which had been the only shop in town to carry the sound from the beginning with both Overload and Jason Mouse working the shop floor at times), after initially being skeptical about the prospects of an all Jungle record store eventually moved in downstairs from 4Front to absorb some of the walk through traffic.
During this era, other DnB specific and related nights were popping up and dissappearing regularly. There were several times when between Sessionz, other DnB nights, and other mixed-genre nights doing dedicated DnB nights, when you could literally go out and hear sound every night of the week. It was really at an all time high and unknown bedroom DJs could commonly be seen lugging record bags around the city in the middle of the day. Then local DJ Surface once exasperatedly said “there are more Jungle DJs in Boston than homeless people, they’re on every corner!”
Editor’s note: Much like Back in the Daze – Part 1: Jungle Roots, I have a ton more film that I need to scan and edit, this gallery will grow over time. Please check back…
Photos from Sessionz
Flyerz from Sessionz