Centreforce Radio started life in May 1989 broadcasting from East London on 88.3 FM. The station was setup with the help of Andy Swallow and a few other people from Echo’s, which was a small night club in East London, by the Bow flyover. The club hosted a couple of nights such as Tony Wilson’s ‘Adrenaline’ on Fridays and Andy Swallow’s ‘Pacha’ on a Saturday.
Centreforce were the first 24 hour Rave station to broadcast to London. The music played was your typical Acid House / Rave music, just what you’d expect to hear at the illegal raves that were taking the country by storm during the summer of 1989, also referred to as ‘The Summer Of Love’.
Having its roots in this scene, Centreforce would also become a place for listeners to find out where the next Rave would be held. The government at the time outlawed these illegal raves and made life as hard as possible for the organisers, as such they couldn’t promote the location of the rave until the last minute, and the pirates of the time played their part in letting people know where the party was at. There were plenty of reports at the time of large convoys of cars all driving to the locations of these raves, and thousands of people turning up to the larger events.
Some DJ’s who could be heard on Centreforce were, Kenny Ken, Randall, Gary D and DJ One, to name but a few.
The station closed down around June 1990, but like a couple of the old skool pirates, did make a return to the London airwaves some years later. In 2007, Centreforce returned for about six months or so on 88.4FM.
After closing down again as a pirate, Centreforce teamed up with Time FM 107.5 from Romford, East London and produced the weekend output on the legal station, this was called Centreforce Sessions. These broadcasts started in June 2009 and ran until there was a change of management at Time FM in April 2012, when the two parties parted company.
There is no doubt that Centreforce played a big part in the music scene of the time and its promotion, this is quite evident when reading the profile of many DJ’s who when asked about their influences, listening to Centreforce is one which you’ll often see mentioned.
The station can now be heard legally via their website and on DAB in a similar area to their original patch.
Below is the ‘About us’ section that used to be on the Centreforce sessions website, so in their own words:
Centreforce 88.3FM was founded on the 8th May 1989. This was the biggest and most influential underground radio station from the Acid House and Summer of Love era. It was the birthplace of the most influential DJ’s and record label’s in dance music today. Centreforce went down in the status books of dance music history.
In 2007 Centreforce surfaced once again to the joy and amazement of the Old Skool Connoisseurs who’s memories of the Summer of Love were once again ignited. Centreforce soon became the platform for underground dance music network re-creating the vibe that it’s listeners thought was once lost.
Centreforce became the most popular internet dance station by far and had secured the biggest DJ line up with the likes of J J Frost, Nicky Blackmarket, DJ Slipmat, Randall, Kenny Ken, Top Buzz, Ray Keith, The Artful Dodger, Pied Piper and the originators DJ Pasha, Keith Mac & DJ One.
The demand from the general public has prompted Time FM to license the brand and broadcast it on 107.5 FM.
More on Centreforce Radio and The Centreforce Sessions can be found on these sites:
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