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Thursday, 22 July 2010

Paul Hardcastle Rainforest/Forest Fire (Bluebird 1985)

Paul Hardcastle Rainforest/Forest Fire (Bluebird 1985)

If you ever ask old school hip hop heads about Rainforest by Paul Hardcastle, you may get either the track Sound Chaser or Forest Fire as the B-side to Rainforest. The single was released in varied track listings, so consequently its a good guess that different fans will have different formats of the single!! I bought my copy from Magpie Records on Foregate Street back in the day!!

I've looked at many different unofficial accompanying videos to Rainforest on YouTube, which feature amazing graphics of tropical rainforests and jungle animals which look so bright and amazing in its own complexity. When I think of Rainforest by Paul Hardcastle I think of breakdancing and body popping!! I think its because the track has such an amazing break and has an intensity which evokes memories of me watching The Rock Steady Crew, Break Machine and other old school hip hop stars popping and locking on pieces of cardboard with a big ghetto blaster by their side!!

Click here to listen to Forest Fire
By contrast, Forest Fire brings back different memories of days past!! Back in the mid 80's I used to travel all over the country by train, and one of my regular stops was Birmingham New Street, which I usually had to wait a while to change trains. So I used to walk around the New Street station, and the surrounding area of brum. In the mid 80's I really liked my hip hop, and particularly the fashion and style i.e. trainers, jeans, hoodies, tracksuits etc. I come from a little country city, and there were very few who dressed different and dared to look different to everyone else. So to walk around Birmingham and see this tsunami of trendiness and fashion really took me by surprise at first!! Then later, after being desensitised to this hip hop pageant of everything trendy, I used to just walk around and take in all the atmosphere and trendiness. More often than not I used to have my walkman, and it seemed that I always used to play Forest Fire by Paul Hardcastle. So consequently, when ever I listen to Forest Fire my adolescant memories of all things Birmingham and those smart, trendy brummie b-boys come flooding back!!

So Rainforest and Forest Fire feature on the same release by Paul Hardcastle, but in return they combine to bring back diverse memories from what seems like light years ago in my own universe. It was an age of personal discovery for me. Namely that there was a big old world of diversity outside of Worcester, and as exciting and multifaceted I thought it was,it was still a scary dangerous world getting ready to sink its teeth into me........

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