Saturday 11th March sees a take over of The Market Place Basement (Southend) bringing you the sounds of Notting Hill Carnival in a dark booming basement. Spinning genres such as Dancehall, Soca, Reggae, Afrobeats and All things Carnival. Smashing tunes out of a 6,000 Watt sound system. Don’t miss out and secure tickets for £5 here & for details browse the Facebook event here!
“Carnival Music brings people together! We’re all united as one, to celebrate life in the form of positive music and dance!”
Click play and listen to the “Pull Up Anthems Playlist” whilst reading our chat with the crew below;
Background of the crew:
Gully B – “After years of DJing as ‘John The Baptist’, John undertook the alias of ‘Gully B’ as an outlet for pushing more obscure genres of music from around the globe. With a love for Dancehall, Kuduro, Baile Funk and Soca, he teamed up with Southend’s very own ‘Andy A’ to create ‘Pull Up!’ as the only place in Essex to hear the sounds of global Carnival music in a club environment.”
Andy A – “With years of experience in UK Garage and Bass music, Andy A joined up with Gully B to bring the people of Southend a night specialising in Carnival music.”
Barretta – “Starting his involvement with Pull Up as a party-goer, Barretta learnt how to develop his love of Reggae music by learning how to mix Dancehall music on two turntables with Gully B. Within three months he was opening up the night!”
Stonefish – “As part of the Tenbomb Artwork crew, Stonefish is no stranger to creative parties, and taking on the role as host/mic man he is the life and soul of the party. With his ear to the floor on new bass heavy music, he provides the Pull Up crew with brand new genres of music from every corner of the globe!”
What got you into this type of music?
Andy A – “From a young age of growing up around the culture of a Jamaican family, listening to pirate radio stations and attending Notting Hill Carnival from the age of 10, the sound of the Caribbean has always stuck with me. This upbringing was my main source of inspiration to become a versatile DJ, that now embraces positive culture from all around the globe in my DJ sets.”
Gully B – “First time I heard ‘Lady G – Nuff Respect’***, I was instantly hooked on the heavy bassline that is found in Dancehall music. During my first internship for a Music PR company, we’d regularly visit The Heatwave’s ‘Hot Wuk Wednesday’ parties in central London. They’d cram out a tiny basement every week and play Dancehall and Soca music all night. We knew that we had to adapt this to Essex, which was lacking in this culture.”
Barretta – “I started off coming to Pull Up as a raver in the crowd! I had been a massive fan of Dancehall and Reggae for years, and I wanted to learn how to mix. After coming to see Gully B and Andy A play, I made it my mission to get involved in the events as a DJ. Now I’m an integral part of the team!”
Stonefish – “I’ve always loved a party! For me, I was never too picky with genres, if the bassline kicks you in the face and it’s got some groove, I’ll be all over it! If that’s Baile Funk from the Favelas of Brazil, or a grooving Afrobeats riddim, if it’s good music, it’s good music!”
What inspires you to play the type of music Pull Up plays?
Gully B – “For me, I’ve been DJing for 10 years now in different genres, and I still DJ with a record collector’s mindset, I want to share music with people, I want them to experience something new. This is how we all became friends in the first place, we all just wanted to show each other new music. Some of Stonefish’s craziest house parties have been born from just us guys meeting up to share music!”
Barretta – “Next thing you know, we’re 3 hours into blasting out the history of Dembow, doing shots of tequila and I’m suddenly dressed in a giant lobster outfit.”
Stonefish – “Then all it takes is for someone to put a photo up online, and then I’ve got 40 people in my house raving in the living room.”
Andy A – “Which is basically the beginnings of a Pull Up Party! To be honest though, the ethos is still the same. whether it’s just us four getting drunk and showing each other new tunes in Stony’s house, or installing our sound system into a sweaty basement and showing 100 people new tunes, the drive is still the same. We want people to have a good time and discover something they can’t hear anywhere else that makes them feel good.”
Tell us about other nights, how have previous ‘Pull Up!’ events gone?
Barretta – “We’ve been overwhelmed with the response at our events, as 4 DJs from Southend-On-Sea with no prior connections in the scene, we had the odds against us to become respected in the culture. Yet, every event we put on, ends up at full capacity within the first couple of hours!”
Andy A – “Essex has a severe lack of events and DJs who support the music we do, we tried getting support from local venues to let us host Pull Up, but unless it’s a House/Techno or Chart music event, none of the local venues want to work together. So we decided, we’d do it ourselves! We bought our own sound system and decor and The Market Place let us adapt their basement into a home for Pull Up! We did one party there last year and couldn’t believe how many people showed up to celebrate Dancehall, Reggae, Afrobeats and Soca music! It just goes to show, there is a scene for this music in Essex, and at least for now, Pull Up! is the only place you’ll get to hear it!”
Gully B – “It’s also worth mentioning, that Funky SX has been a fantastic partnership. They’ve given us a prime time platform for us to showcase the music we love on their Thursday nights (9pm). By having the radio show, we’re able to connect to so many more people who are fans of our sound.”
Stonefish – “Let’s not forget about last year’s festivals too! Playing the last two BSTK festivals were great, it was great to have their support by letting us play. Of course our favourite show of last year was Leefest! That was an insane party! We did a 4 hour takeover in their smallest stage, which was right out the way in the woods, away from the rest of the festival stages. Admittedly, it didn’t look like much when we arrived in the afternoon to set up, but as soon as the sun had set, we had people climbing up and raving in the trees, as well as 300 people all crammed into the small opening in the woodland. It was amazing!”
What can we expect Saturday?
Gully B – “Those who’ve been to Notting Hill Carnival, imagine squeezing the sounds of Carnival into a basement! To those who’re new to the experience, Pull Up is a celebration of music from around the globe that you’d not necessarily get to hear anywhere else. Of course, we’ll feature all the anthems from artists like Sean Paul, Fuse ODG, Beenie Man, Vybz Kartel, Popcaan etc, but we’re always trying to develop exposure for some of the new artists breaking through in Reggae, Dancehall, Afrobeats and Soca music.”
What makes coming together and partying to the same music so important?
Stonefish – “Carnival Music brings people together! We’re all united as one, to celebrate life in the form of positive music and dance! For me, the beats and rhythms are so infectious I always want to get moving to it. I mean, try listening to a Soca tune and not find yourself bobbing your head about and feeling that happy summer vibe. If I can get an ounce of that feeling across to the crowd when I pick up the mic, then I know I’m doing my job right!”