Music was a big part of the scene and most b-boys would go to great lengths to get the music and would trade it around on cassette tapes often taped off pirate radio stations…The music coming in to the country at them times was expensive and was pretty much for the older generation therefore kids had to be creative in getting their music. (Daz the Graff Man).
Heatwave radio in Nottingham was massively important as it was a pirate radio station that could be picked up in Derby. So a lot of the early stuff we listened to particularly the underground stuff was picked up through listening to Heatwave – our pirate radio stations came later…
The reason I started producing is that this music was hard to get and there wasn’t that many people producing it. So we would wait for the next Eric B and Rakim album or the next Public Enemy album and in between there would be nothing to listen to so I thought I could produce my own new music to listen to…I knew this one guy Carlton who made early house music was selling a drum machine so I saved and scraped waited for my giro and eventually bought the drum machine. I wasn’t shown how to use it but I persevered in my room and eventually learnt how to make what’s known as pause-tapes. (Baby J).
Pause-tapes were an early DIY way of producing. Using dual cassette decks, aspiring producers would play and record a sample from another tape or record, pausing the tape when the sample had finished…They would then rewind to the beginning of the sample and unpause the tape, starting the process again…the act of (creating) pause-tape beats goes all the way back to the early days of Hip Hop. (www.hiphopdx.com)