Looking back its all a bit bizarre . I arrived in Bristol in 1991 as a long haired , middle class , indie kid. By complete fluke I became friends with some of the "cool kids" and next thing I was sharing Red Stripe with Daddy G at a house party, smoking spliffs with Rae & Christian and Roni Size's Reprazent crew back stage at The Thekla, buying records with Geoff Barrow and other dj's , hanging out behind the decks with James Lavelle , DJ Shadow and Krush , nodding at their record selection like I knew something as they played the Blue Mountain.
I also ended up partying with Matt Pritchard and his mates pre Dirty Sanchez which looking back was a bit odd .
The flip side was that there was a dark side, my friends had a gun put on the table when they attempted to buy a large quantity of weed from someone, seeing people in the squat scene end up on smack , getting mugged , barricading your flat door as the dealer next door is getting his kicked in by an unhappy customer..
These days an artisan coffee and a sour dough pizza are much more my cup off tea.
Bristol is currently seen as somewhere at the forefront of all things hip and progressive, and has been since about 1990.
Culturally, that’s Inkie and Banksy and street art. That’s Massive Attack and Tricky and Geoff Barrow’s Portishead. That’s St Paul’s soundsystems and Gloucester Road and house parties in squats and illegal warehouse raves.
Sourdough Bristol also means the price of the cheapest house in Montpelier is £300,000. It means the rent in St Paul’s going up from £800 a month to £1,200 a month.
Reminiscing about the past always looks better through rose coloured spectacles.
I may have only had to pay £375 for a 1 bed flat in St Pauls in the 1990's , but it meant sharing a hallway with a crack dealer and walking past the hookers to get up the stairs.
The squat parties were full of crusties with their cheap drugs and smelly clothes and being mugged in St Pauls coming back from a sound system party was never fun.
Oh , those were the days and we didn't even know what sourdough was .....