Suburban Base will need no introduction to many of you, . Like other labels which appeared over the years, it is an offspring of a successful record shop from the time, in this case Boogie Times base in Romford. Launched in 1991 the label launched an impressive list of hits and club anthems. Dan Donnelley is the man behind the label......
"I started the company from scratch myself - I was working in like a main stream shop, selling all sort of music and I thought this isn't the sort of stuff I want to be selling, so I applied for jobs with various dance specialists in London; Bluebird, City Sounds and so on. I had experience working in record shops, but no joy and I didn't like the elitist attitudes of a lot of them anyway. Unless you're one of their key bods, they won't want to serve you. So basically my idea was to start up my own shop with a different attitude. I spoke with my bank manager and told him exactly what I'm telling you know, I know it will work, and he lent me the dough! When I first went to see him I was 17 years old, and I got the first bank loan when I'd just turned 18, and the shop started 2 months after my 18th really. At 18, I'd got nothing, so my attitudes was that I've got nothing to lose.
Being situated in the suburbs means get passing trade to be interested, trade that might of otherwise have been directed towards central London, where scouting around the shops might find the odd exclusive here and there, and this was what inspired the label, "So that we had our own exclusives - and all the other shops had their own white labels which had been sold to the shops by a man in a van. We didn't get all that, because we weren't all that well known, so we made our own.
The first thing Dan released was a track called Hypersonic on D-Zone Records, predating the Suburban base releases that were yet to come. When asked what was the first release that went through the shop Dan becomes hazy. How many can there have been I wonder? Generally speaking, a track will first appear on the boogie times label, if reactions are good may well then appear under the Sub Urban Base identity, and given a full release. For this reason, its no easy to get an exact running order of records, as there is a lot of crossovers. The best example of this is Sonz of a Loop Da Loop Era "(Far Out") but more of that in a while. The set up is like 'one big happy family' my phrase, but one that Dan is quick to agree with. "Austin is our studio engineer - he's the man that twiddles the knobs" Home studio? "No, we've got our own studio that we've built up - fully sound proofed studio with a 16 track desk, plenty of keyboards, we do all the vocals there - yeah, basically its a full studio, and everything's recorded there, its handy having a studio at the end of your road - its convenient being able to work wherever you like, and its nice to have our own engineer.
You know the sound he can get - its a good little studio, but with the sound that Austin gets out of it, you'd think that it was better than it actually is"
Also part of the happy family is Winston, who also works in the record shop by day, Winstons first vinyl outing was none other than Run Tings record 'Keep the Fires Burning' which was later also graced with a remix by Mickey Finn and recently 'Back Again'. But what other achievements has the label had besides those already mentioned. Read on to find out.........
In 1992 they released a record so fresh sounding it made it into the top 40, and subsequently focused much more attention towards Romford and its musical finest. The record was Sonz of a Loop Era's "Far Out" it was a long running favourite with crowds. Following this another Suburban Base record found its way into the top 40, Smart Es, "Sesam E's Treet" and went as high as no 21. Despite rumours at the time, Sub Base had no problems with the use of the Sesame Street sample, but did remove the picture of Oscar the grouch smoking a joint from the cover, at the request of Childrens Management Workshop.
Success with the label meant tour in the US paid for by a US rave paper, a tour that left Sub base crew getting caught up in an Earthquake in Orlando, and most testing of all when the speaker stack fell onto the mixing desk at a PA and left them with no sounds, Rachel Wallace had to sing acappela to approximately 10,000 people, unrehearsed.
Other big tracks along the way included M&M "Please don't stand in my way", which broke the Suburban Base label to a wider audience.
[SBA 004] The Dream Team - Stamina
[SBA 008] Krome & Time - This Sound Is For The Underground-The Slammer.rar
SBA 101 Boogie Times Tribe Darker Stranger (12")[SBA 109] Remarc - R.I.P.-In Da Hood
[SBA 110] Austin - I Get High-Unity In Dub
[SBA 111] The Dream Team - Raw Dogs Relik-X-Files
SBP 026 Krome & Time The Slammer (12")
SBP 027 Boogie Times Tribe Dark Stranger (12")SUBBASE 15 Smart E's Loo's Control (Promo 2) (12")
SUBBASE 15C Smart E's Loo's Control (Cassette)
SUBBASE 15CD Smart E's Loo's Control (CD5")
SUBBASE 16CD Run Tings Back Again (CD5")
SUBBASE 19CD Sonz Of A Loop Da Loop Era Flowers In My Garden LP (CD5")
SUBBASE 20CD DJ Hype Shot In The Dark (CD5")
SUBBASE 21CD Q-Bass Deepa / Funky Hardcore (CD5")
SUBBASE 22CD Phuture Assassins Roots n Future (CD5")
SUBBASE 23CD DJ Rap & Aston Vertigo (CD5")
SUBBASE 24CD Various Subplates Volume 1 (CD5")
SUBBASE 24L Various Subplates Volume 1 Ltd (12")
SUBBASE 29CD Various Subplates Volume 2 (CD5")
SUBBASE 49CD Dream Team, The Stamina (CD5")
Subbase Compilations[JLSUBLP 006] The Dream Team - The Trilogy
[JOINT 1LP] The Joint LP (VA)
[JOINT 2LP] The Joint II (VA).part1
[JOINT 2LP] The Joint II (VA).part2
[JOINT 3CD] A History Of Hardcore (VA).part1.rar
[JOINT 3CD] A History Of Hardcore (VA).part2.rar
[JOINT 3CD] A History Of Hardcore (VA).part3.rar
[SUBBASE CD2] D'Cruze - Control
[SUBBASE CD4] Subbase Sampler (VA)
[SUBBASE CD5] Classic Subbase (VA)
[SUBBASE LP1 FREE] Suburban Base-Sound Of The Phuture (VA)
[SUBBASE LP3] Marvellous Cain - Gun Talk