Main image: Local rappers 3 Culture performing at the Homecoming event. Picture Ibolya Feher.
When you think of Knowle West musicians – Tricky probably comes to mind – but the area has also produced a host of others justly proud of their roots.
Knowle West Media Centre’s ‘Homecoming’ event was part of ‘Homes for Heroes 100″ which celebrates the centenary of the council estate.
It looked at the past talent which has come out of the area as well as the new wave of young musicians – and how South Bristol has influenced British music.
The evening featured sets by DJ Bungy and a lively performance from local rappers 3 Culture – as well as one of the first screenings of “25 years of Full Cycle” by filmmaker Gary Thompson.
With interviews from his brother and Co-founder DJ Krust – the film charted the history of the record company and how Krust made it in the business.
A panel hosted by music journalist and author Joe Muggs gave an insight into Krust, also an international electronic artist, as well as new artists Chavez from 3 Culture and Kala Chng – who had her first stage appearance on a Knowle West stage ten years ago.
Krust spoke of how he and his brother Gary grew up in Knowle West and how Eagle House Youth Club – also where the Knowle West band The Eagles formed in 1958 – has fond memories for him, from the music to spray painting on the back of the walls.
He said: “We all grew up together, we were one of seven black families in Knowle West… our crew was multi-cultural – we went to Eagle House and learnt together..
“What the music did was integrate that message of unity… some places you didn’t go out at certain times but at Eagle House Youth Centre you could go and be safe…
“I’ve travelled the world… and there’s nothing like Bristol and definitely nothing like Knowle West…
“Bristol is a melting pot and Knowle West has lots of people getting on and making the best of a tough situation…”
New talent Chavez and Kala Chng, who have been working to start music events in Knowle West, agree they want to see things continue to grow in the community.
Kala said: “I had my first gig in Knowle West and then started going to pubs in Bedminster and Stokes Crown and then grew tired of leaving my area – wishing you had that vibe around it…”
Chavez added: “There’s a lot of potential here and we’re trying to get a lot of things going – give it another couple of years…”