Roll the tapes all the way back to October 1987 when 20 year old Laurent Garnier discovered Manchester’s dance music church, Haçienda. This video shows now the french legend of house preparing to play at the fundamental Manchester club that saw the rise of acid house and hosted the first English raves.
It happened one night in October 1987. One year before it, then a 20 year old house music charmeur français, had arrived to Manchester (following a girl, as often). He had been wondering around the restaurants of Altrincham, South Manchester and spreading his mixtapes all around the city, until one of them fell into the hands and ears of Haçienda’s boss, Tony Wilson, who was thinking of starting a new party.
On October 7, Laurent Garnier stood behind the decks of the legendary club for the first time under the alias DJ Pedro: “The evening was called Zumbar and the idea was to play different things in the weekend programme. House music had not exploded yet.” Laurent Garnier continues: “So we played a lot of hip-hop, Hi-NRG, the ancestor of house and techno. I even have the tapes of the evening still. That was the time of S’Express, Joe Smooth, and the song ‘Promised Land’ … The biggest hit was ‘Pump Up The Volume’ M | A | R | R | S. Everyone went crazy when I played it. ”
The beginning of the fame and glory for Laurent came hand in hand with the pivotal period for electronic music. Garnier explains:
“I don’t have exact memories of me playing the decks per se, but those nights were all about discovering the titles, observing, being on the dance floor, watching the scene exploded. I arrived in Manchester in 1986. And between 1986 and 88, I saw England switch. Initially, it was the time of Chicago house, black culture, based on dance, ‘jacking’. Guys were making circles, it was hard to go home. It went from the black audience only, who listened to house music, to a white audience, who were following it in the poor suburbs of Manchester. Then came the ecstasy and acid house exploded. Haçienda was rocking in space for five months. The city was already seething when I arrived, but afterwards it was a sick thing. ” The rest is history.
This video which is taken from a french cultural show, which talks about raving as the brand new thing in England, shows Laurent telling on the music and the legendary club in exact those times of the matter. It is really amusing to watch people still discovering their ways to rock the music.