Junior Boy’s Own: London House History
How a DIY magazine and record label helped shape a dancefloor revolution: London’s legendary Junior Boy’s Own crew share their story.
The roots of the Junior Boy’s Own label can be traced back to the DIY-minded and utterly dedicated Boy’s Own fanzine. Created by clubbing and football friends Terry Farley, Andrew Weatherall, Steve Mayes and Cymon Eckel in 1985, it was a labor of love - a patchwork of typewriter ribbons, felt pens and pritt stick, that chronicled the music and lifestyle of Britain’s club scenes, and the seeds of what would become acid house. When early house and Balearic styles caught hold in London, the magazine found itself the mouthpiece of acid house, with the editorial team DJ-ing at clubs like Danny Rampling’s Shoom and Paul Oakenfold’s Future. The natural progression of organising their own parties, to A&R-ing and starting their own label with friends Pete Heller and Steven Hall, to producing their own tracks and other bands, reflects just how strong the community spirit of the dancefloor was at the turn of the ’90s. Early tracks like Bocca Juniors’ “Raise” and Jah Wobble’s “Bomba” fused feel-good keys and dubbed out grooves into a dancefloor haze. While they might not have realized it, the Boy’s Own team were laying the foundations for what would become the UK mainstream, and with the creation of the Junior Boy’s Own sub label, artists like The Chemical Brothers, Underworld, and X-Press 2 soundtracked a ’90s generation’s coming of age. From football hooliganism and Balearic abandon to lad’s mags and house music’s lasting cultural footprint: Junior Boy’s Own have guided us through it all.