Sunday, September 27, 2009


"This 'funky' thing, it'll be over in a minute. You can only say something is new once." If anyone has witnessed a genre come and go, it's Geeneus. The 30-year-old boss of London’s most influential pirate radio station, Rinse FM, Geeneus started broadcasting 15 years ago with guys like Wiley and Slimzee. They played strictly jungle back then; however, Geeneus is a self-professed “new thing addict” these days. He’s seen the arc of U.K. urban music burn through jungle, garage, and grime.

“The funky thing came about because girls had stopped dancing in clubs—[grime] was more of a show thing,” says Geeneus. “So people could just dance again, you know? It was 70% females. And now it's gone the completely opposite way again.”

Already, in less than a year and half, the style that's become known as U.K. funky has been banned, un-banned, and re-banned in countless South London clubs. Three generations of producers and DJs have effectively come and gone. And as the music crests toward perhaps a final stage, funky has splintered into a mutant, experimental phase via producers like Cooly G and Roska—right as the rest of the world has only just heard about it.

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