Party time at the Printworks

BY TOBY PORTER
toby@slpmedia.co.uk

One of the biggest brands in music has picked a venue which used to be Europe’s biggest printworks to celebrate its 10th anniversary.

SBTV, which launched the careers of Skepta and Ed Sheeran, will host its party on December 16 and 17 at the 16-acre Printworks, in Surrey Quays Road, Southwark, which once housed the presses of the Daily Mail, Metro and the Evening Standard newspapers.

The fully soundproofed venue, which opened in February, will host performances from SBTV’s “friends and family” including Wiley, the godfather of grime.

The line-up also includes JME, Ghetts, Big Narstie, Devlin, Brixton-born AJ Tracey, Shola Ama and Paigey Cakey.

Other names on the list will be MOBO award-winner Abra Cadabra, wordsmith Bugzy Malone, rap artist and poet Kojey Radical, cult pioneer Casisdead and the hotly tipped Ms Banks and Tanika. Other big names on the list are  Aaron Unknown, Devlin, Crazy Cousinz and Frisco.

SBTV has grown to become a significant platform for grime and hip-hop under the leadership of Jamal Edwards, who was recognised with an MBE for his work in promoting homegrown talent in 2014.

Jamal Edwards, founder of SBTV. European Alliance of News Agencies (EANA) conference, Grange Tower Hotel, London.

He took it from a one man operation for the first three years – with him taking amateur footage himself – to one of the most influential music brands in British music, in the process making it one of the most influential on the planet.

Mr Edwards, a former BBC runner and son of X Factor series two contestant Brenda Edwards, was also asked to create the first media hub at Buckingham Palace and interviewed Prince Charles in 2013. He set up a YouTube channel in November 2006, and early clips featured freestyle raps and videos shot on the streets of London.

The Printworks London weekend takeover will explore the past, present and future of SBTV, which describes its sound system as “blade runner on acid”.

The 5,000-capacity venue will also house food traders, cocktails and entertainment over 15 acres, with six event spaces spread over 119,200 square feet and 40,000 sq ft of outside space.

The Printworks space has deliberately left as raw as possible. Huge items of print machinery remain, and a roll of print paper from the factory’s last run still sits in one of the presses.

Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher with Lord and Lady Rothermere at the opening of Harmsworth Quays New Printing and Distribution Plant at Surrey Docks, London.

The main focus is one long, narrow room – the chamber for the presses – which acts as the main room for DJ events.


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