This Thursday sees the start of the latest edition of We Out Here, one of the UK’s finest boutique festivals. As many of you will be aware, it is curated by Gilles Peterson and a team that includes those behind the Dimensions and Soundwave festivals in Croatia.

Join The Future’s Matt Anniss has been asked to take part this year and will be making his festival debut in the talks tent. On Friday 20th August, he’ll be hosting a talk entitled Serious Dances, Serious Dancers: All-Dayers, Jazz-Funk, Electro and the Roots of UK Dance Music.

Developed specifically for the festival – it’s the most jazz-dance friendly large-scale event in the UK and this year features a dedicated “dance tent” with introductory classes and crew showcases – the talk will see Matt and  bleep legend Winston Hazel (himself a former dancer) discussing the soul all-dayer era (late 70s/early 80s), the serious dance culture attached to them, and the role that these events, and the “proper dancers” who travelled from far and wide to attend them, had on the development of UK dance music culture during the acid house movement that followed.

Those who have read Join The Future will note that parts of this story are covered in the book and in Matt’s essay for RBMA, Britain’s First Dance Music Boom: The Soul All-Dayer Scene 1975-86. While the talk will cover similar ground, there will be further discussion of the experiences of dancers, the role of rivalry, the differences between the scenes in different regions of the UK and of course some of the numerous dancers who went on to become pioneering DJs and producers from the mid 1980s onwards. There will also be a chance for audience members to ask Matt and the panel questions following the main discussion.

The talk will take place at 12.30pm on Friday 20th August in the dedicated Talks Tent at We Out Here. For more information on the festival, head to the We Out Here website. To get your copy of Join The Future: Bleep Techno and the Birth of British Bass Music, head to the Velocity Press website.

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Freelance writer, editor, copywriter and communications professional. Music obsessive. DJ. Sports anorak.

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