Struggletown Community Council

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Beth Black | Musician, Activisit - plays in/is flinch., Slowlight, Grave Matthews, 10am, Benjamin Blue (RIP)

Season 1, Ep. 2

In this episode, I catch up with one of my closest friends, who also happens to play bass and sing in my band, Slowlight. Beth is one of the most inspiring and hard-working people, I have been lucky enough to meet. She has worked countless day jobs as a musician, working with a wide range of people using music as a tool for communication, expression, and enjoyment. She also embodies the DIY spirit of activism and community support, from driving bands around to hosting the odd gig in her flat, Beth has put in the miles. This conversation came just as she was on the cusp of releasing her lockdown recorded, solo project under the moniker flinch. this release was also the catalyst for this podcast as it kick-started my enthusiasm for connecting with the DIY community Struggletown was involved in building. Beth's first DIY show was one of ours, at Bloc and it's great to still be part of her musical life in a bunch of different ways.


Big thanks to Beth for having the patience to do this twice, as the first version was a write off for a few reasons (all my own fault!)


Opening theme by gerard from flakes (and grave matthews)

End track - Escape from Rupture Farms by flinch. from Enough is Enough.

More Episodes

3/29/2021

Calum Doris | Flood of Red | Bad Luck (Part 1)

Season 1, Ep. 9
Today's guest is Calum Doris - the legendary guitar player for post-hardcore band Flood of Red, and brains behind Bad Luck, who split their time between making awesome pop-rock songs and providing the musical chops for Pop Punk Karaoke nights in Glasgow. Calum was born in California and found himself in Airdrie at the age of 8 - in the first part of our conversation, we discover how he got over that culture shock and ended up involved in campaigning for a skatepark to be built in the area. We delve into his musical background, finding out his early influences and what made him want to pick up a guitar. We talk about his supportive parents, including his mum Joan who encouraged him and guided him down the right path to get things done properly.Calum was one of the first people I thought of for this podcast, and we've been trying to find the time to chat for a few months now, but boy was it worth the wait. We've been friends for a long time before the label existed, I worked on designs for Flood of Red, we hung out on nights out and ended up working together in a well-known coffee chain. Calum has done illustrations for various zines and Struggletown merch in his signature cartoon style, so he's well connected to the Struggletown story. Flood of Red has played amazing sets for us at Struggle nights in Bloc and Bad Luck has tore it up at Strugglefest on more than one occasion.If you've had the pleasure of meeting Calum, you'll know he likes to chat - so I knew this would be a story that would take place over at least two episodes - by the time we wrap up part 1, Calum and a group of high school friends under the name The Psychotic Pandas have been playing local shows in community rooms to 400 kids most weekends, sharing the bill with up and coming UK bands like Enter Shikari and Azriel. We'll catch up with Calum again soon for part 2.Closing track - Hold On (feat. Jordan Spiers) taken from Old Songs by Bad Luck - http://badluck1987.bandcamp.com
3/9/2021

Ben Goulder | Grazes | The Pact | Snöar Press | Fanfare

Season 1, Ep. 8
*some delays in audio, so it sounds like it takes me ages to laugh at stuff, sorry!*In this episode, I catch up with Ben, whose bands always play exactly the right covers to get me grabbing the mic. We chat about his latest project - Fanfare, which releases mixtapes created and curated by artists. These limited edition cassettes are designed as an accessible evolution of the photo and art books of his previous project Snöar Press. We chat about the Sheffield hardcore scene that Ben threw himself into in the mid-2000s, the influence of MySpace on the UK music scene as well as Dead and Gone Records' impact on the Sheffield scene and UK hardcore in general.Ben's first band Grazes was influenced by a mixture of the local hardcore bands that popped up at the time, as well as tinges of screamo and punk. We met at a two-day festival booked by Hawkchild DIY in Stereo called Shortsfest. They covered No Spiritual Surrender by Inside Out and I was stoked (see cover image). After Grazes, The Pact went for a straight-up hardcore sound, emulating bands like American Nightmare and Carry On. Struggletown distributed releases by both bands, a split 7" with Jackals and Grazes and a demo tape for The Pact.Once those bands were out of his system Ben moved to London to study publishing, finding a gap in the local art scene for working-class northern voices. His DIY approach was heavily influenced by his time in bands and many of the artists he worked with are connected to hardcore, including his longtime collaborator and friend Luke Overin, who fronted Never Again. Snöar Press was a successful little DIY operation, releasing books from artists and exhibiting at book fairs in the US. Ben has since launched Fanfare, which is an evolution of his involvement in art releases, aiming for greater accessibility, through the format of sound/music on limited edition cassettes by artists, Cali Dewitt, Luke Overin & Eddie Langham. Find out more about these releases at http://fanfare.worldClosing track - Breathing Fresh Air Through Rotten Lungs by The Pact from the demo/Everyday Struggle Vol.II
3/1/2021

Anna Goldthorp | DJ | Anna G's House Party | Anna & Holly's Dance Party | Shake Appeal

Season 1, Ep. 7
My guest on this episode is Anna Goldthorp, one of the coolest people I know. From roots as a teenage punk, collecting records by so-cal bands via No Idea, Adeline & Lookout records, she went on to play brass (reluctantly) in a local ska band, introducing her to the local punk scene at an early age. Anna is is best known as a DJ who knows how to build a set out of a wide range of great music, from punk rock to 60's garage and soul. I've been lucky enough to catch Anna playing as part of the triple threat known as Shake Appeal which ran for years in Bloc, the same amazing venue where we hosted hundreds of bands. Shake Appeal was a rare beast that married the sounds of the rock'n'roll, r&b, and soul to punk, metal, and glam rock, without sounding shite. Each of the DJs at that particular night was so well versed in the music they loved that they were able to blend these genres into a stompable dance cavalcade. The frenzied and handmade visual identity for the night summarised the atmosphere perfectly. Anna has gone on to DJ with her friend Holly, playing more mid-century hits with seemingly effortless style and cool vibes always at Nice N Sleazy. Her sophisticated ear for niche 45s and hidden gems has led her to play weekenders in Hamburg, Sheffield and seen her connect with DJs from LA to start up a monthly radio show - Anna G's House Party - which is available to hear on mixcloud.com/radiocore/anna-gs-house-party/Anna's story of getting into punk, figuring out how to DJ and meeting folk along the way is inspirational and underlines the idea that DIY is not genre-specific, but that punk rock gives people the permission to do what they want, how they want.I really relished the opportunity to sit down with Anna and learn about what she does and why and I hope you enjoy the conversation!Closing song - Mini Skirt Blues by Flower Children