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Guest Column - Chase & Status: Why Britain rules the soundwaves

Guest Column - Chase & Status: Why Britain rules the soundwaves
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Rounding off a year that’s seen them tour the world, Chase & Status – aka Saul Milton and Will Kennard – celebrate British culture’s impact on the globe.

British music and culture has been an integral part of our career for the last ten years and for this we consider ourselves very lucky. The liberal attitude and richness of diversity in this country has helped shape our identity and continually inspires our work; and we’re very proud of that.

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Like many young people around the early to mid-90s, we were quick to fall in love with the British rave scene, which represented an amazing shift in, and attitudes towards music. This movement took the nation by storm and the ripples created would soon be felt far away in distant continents. Through our touring we’ve been fortunate enough to travel around the world and witness the effect that this British music, whether it be drum’N’bass, house, garage or dubstep, has had. We have seen, first hand, the way British dance festivals have influenced huge changes in cultures and attitudes in other countries particularly within the USA. British music has also undeniably influenced the work of global pop icons such as Rihanna and Katy Perry as well.

We’re spoilt in this country. Having travelled so extensively, it’s actually very hard for people outside of the UK to discover and access, non-commercial, corporately driven music. At home, it’s entirely normal to hear the likes of Zane Lowe playing the most underground, progressive music from all over the world, at peak time. It’s easy to take this kind of exposure for granted. Spend a week in the US listening to radio and you will quickly appreciate the value of public organisations like the Beeb. Britain enjoys a level of culture almost unparalleled with the rest of the world.

We have such an incredible choice of art galleries, radio shows, events and TV shows, which all help shape this diversity. British people seem very open to a mixture of sounds and influences. Whether it’s reggae, hip hop, folk, or rock (and everything in between) these combinations have made the creative market in Britain very eclectic. There is no better place to witness this in all its glory than one of the many iconic festivals held each year, like Glastonbury.

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This was also evident at the recent Red Bull Culture Clash, which we took part in. It was an amazing event, live to a crowd of 20,000, and many more watching online throughout the world. We were competing against 3 other groups representing completely different cultures, each trying to represent theirs to the fullest and thereby hopefully defeating their opponents. It was a once in a lifetime event for us, and seeing London street crews versus American hip hop crews, versus reggae legends, was amazing. The face-off between BBK and A$AP Mob was particularly interesting.

It really proved how strong the loyalty to British culture is; how much it means to be British. On the night we formed a group called Rebel Sound that consisted of Sir David Rodigan, Shy FX and ourselves. David and Shy FX are from different musical backgrounds to us; but we all came together and demonstrated our knowledge in different ways to the crowd. We played a carefully selected, yet diverse sound that, to our relief, resulted in a very satisfying victory!

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Its a great privilege to represent these different sounds on our record label, MTA Records. We’ve just signed a new talent called Dimension who along with Kove is writing some of the best drum’n’bass music we’ve heard in a long time. Nero are also on the verge of delivering a second album and we think it’s going to be the biggest thing next year. Producer TCTS is making some of the most exciting house music around as well as Josh Butler who continues to write wonderfully deep, soulful techno. As artists ourselves, mixing with these young artists inspires us hugely. Some of the aforementioned acts will be performing at our 5th birthday party at London club Oval Space this week (19 December). We hope to showcase a breadth of British talent at this party; with, Shy Fx, GotSome, TCTS, Kove and Dream Mclean all performing too. See Ovalspace.co.uk for details.

From performing all over the world to helping develop homegrown, emerging, young talent across all spectrums of music, we will always champion British culture and music. It’s the least we can do.

Chase & Status@chaseandstatus

For more head to Chaseandstatus.co.uk .


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