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Baker's Dozen

Dancing & Defiance - Paul Flynn's Soundtrack To 30 Years Of Gay Culture
Andy Thomas , July 24th, 2017 11:06

To mark the anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality in the UK, Paul Flynn (author of Good as You: From Prejudice to Pride, 30 Years of Gay Britain) chooses 13 records that soundtracked his life, from ACR to Elton and Lil Kim to Sleaford Mods.


Various Artists - The House That Trax Built
It really was as alien as walking onto a crater of the moon the first time you went to the Hacienda. Mine was the same year I did my 'O' levels. You got called a weirdo at school for going, which suited me fine. It was a half-empty Wednesday night. I bumped into a plump woman dressed like Corinne from Swing Out Sister who'd given me a free haircut at Vidal Sassoon once, standing over the balcony watching the main dancefloor, bored. She handed me a thumbed paperback of Nabokov's Lolita from her rucksack and said "take that to the toilets and read it." The thing is: I did. She was barking up the wrong tree for her Mrs Robinson moment so I fell in love with the place, not the girl. You could buy the music they played in the club when the big House takeover happened from Spin Inn, the nondescript record shop tucked away near goth's favourite, the Underground Market, and Razor's Edge hairdressers, where you could get a flat-top measured by a spirit level. Loads of the music in there was on Trax. It was standard behaviour then to save up for three weeks from a Saturday job to pay £20 for a shrink-wrapped Farley 'Jackmaster' Funk dub with a black sleeve. This is a later collection of some of the best, Fingers Inc's 'Washing Machine', Ralphi Rosario's 'U Used To Hold Me' and the people's choice, Frankie Knuckles' 'Your Love'. I went to Chicago for the first time almost 20 years later to interview R.Kelly. The cab pulled up at his Chocolate Factory studios, on a bleak thoroughfare out of town and I noticed the word 'Trax' engraved on the security gates so spent more time talking to a receptionist guy who'd worked there back in the day than I did with Mr Kelly. It was a bit of a shit-heap, in all honesty. I wanted to feel Frankie in the cornices but really, you could see why he died at 59 after spending so much time there.