Jungle to drum and bass
The phrase "drum and bass" had been used for years previously in the London soul and funk pirate radio scenes and was even a bit of a catchphrase for UK Radio 1 DJ Trevor Nelson in his pirate days, who used it to describe the deeper, rougher funk and "rare groove" sound that was popular in London at the time.
A station ID jingle used on London pirate Kiss FM from the late 1980s would proclaim "drum and bass style on Kiss".LTJ Bukem with MC Conrad at Dreamscape Shortly after midnight on New Years Day, 1994, MC Conrad referred to the style of music LTJ Bukem was playing as both "hardcore" and "drum and bass", but neglected to describe it as jungle.Problems playing this file? See media help.However, as the early nineties saw drum and bass break out from its underground roots and begin to win popularity with the general British public, many producers attempted to expand the influences of the music beyond the domination of ragga-based sounds. By 1995, a counter movement to the ragga style was emerging.
Since the term jungle was so closely related to the ragga influenced sound, DJs and producers who did not incorporate
reggae elements began to adopt the term "drum and bass" to differentiate themselves and their musical styles.
This reflected a change in the musical style which incorporated increased drum break editing.
Sometimes this was referred to as "intelligence", though this later came to refer to the more relaxing style of
drum and bass associated with producers such as LTJ Bukem.
Perhaps the first track to explicitly use the term "drum and bass" to refer to itself was released in 1993,
The producer The Invisible Man described it:"A well edited Amen Break alongside an 808 sub kick and some simple atmospherics just sounded so amazing all on its own, thus the speech sample "strictly drum and bass". A whole new world of possibilities was opening up for the drum programming... It wasn't long before the amen break was being used by practically every producer within the scene, and as time progressed the Belgian style techno stabs and noises disappeared, and the edits and studio trickery got more and more complex,
People were at last beginning to call the music Drum and Bass instead of hardcore.
This Amen formula certainly helped cement the sound for many of the tracks I went on to produce for Gwange, Q-Project and Spinback on Legend Records. After a while, tracks using the Amen break virtually had a genre all of their own,
Foul Play, Peshay, Bukem, DJ Dextrousand DJ Crystal among others were all solid amen addicts back then too.
"Towards late 1994 and especially in 1995 there was a definite distinction between the reggae and ragga sounding jungle and the tracks with heavily edited breaks, such as the artists Remarc, DJ Dextrous and The Dream Team on Suburban Bass Records. Ironically, one compilation which brought the term to the wider awareness of those outside the scene, 'Drum & Bass Selection vol 1' (1994), featured a large amount of ragga influenced tracks, and the first big track to use the term in its title (Remarc's 'Drum & Bass Wize', 1994) was also ragga-influenced.