Nasty Rockers is the Sound of Music
Vinyl to the world!
Gaffa Blue was raised in Battersea, South West London in the mid-60s, born to Jamaican parents he was raised in a household with a vibrant cultural mixture of reggae and ska music. Gaffa Blues earliest memories are of his Mother and Father hosting dance parties on weekends, this is where Gaffa Blues adoration for reggae music was first born. He remembers the first ever record he bought from Slip Disc record shop, called Ballistic Affair by Leroy Smart. He couldn’t have known at this point, that this first record purchase would be the start of a lifetime love affair and career within the reggae music industry.
GB had lots of early influences growing up around reggae music, attending his first big dance going to listen to the first Jamaican sound that visited England. That’s was ray symbolic with the bionic DJ ranking jo and jah screw who used to select stur-gav, what a night in 1980 Wandsworth Town Hall the admission fee in those days was only £1.50 and this was the defining and captivating moment, GB knew he would become a selector.
As a teenager Gaffa Blue attended Spencer Park Secondary School, where he met and became friends with 7 other students. In 1980 they would go on to create a sound system called Young Diamonds. During this period of Gaffa’s teens he and his friends played out at numerous local venues in Battersea, and Gaffa Blues career as a DJ and selector had begun. At school, Gaffa Blue also had a passion for cricket and was a talented and respected bowler for his schools cricket team.
With adulthood looming, Gaffa was faced with decisions about his future career goals. He would then embark on a 15 year career at Dub Vendor record shop in Clapham Junction. This began as a part-time job and he later went on to become a full-time member of staff.
This is where his appreciation of the reggae music industry grew. He learnt first-hand about record distribution, recording studios the record pressing trade as well as gaining extensive knowledge of the vast reggae music catalogue. He was afforded the opportunity to be exposed to, many, many famous reggae Singers, Musicians, Producers, Distributors and Sound System Owners.
With the wealth of knowledge, expertise and contacts he made at Dub Vendor, he decided in 2001 launched his very-own distribution company, GB Distribution. In addition to Gaffa Blues Dub Vendor career and GB Distribution Company, he has been a DJ/Selector for Killer Watt Sound and First Class Sound. Most notably, in August 1990 Gaffa Blue joined and became the resident selector of Nasty Love sound system, the then number 1dancehall sound system in London. He would stay with Nasty Love for 8 years.
Gaffa Blue has been interviewed on Capital Radio, and has had countless mentions and write ups in magazines and newspaper articles, most famously NME.
Gaffa Blue has also been interviewed for and featured in a BBC documentary marking the 50th Anniversary of the Notting Hill Carnival, which was televised in August 2015.
Gaffa Blue continues to actively DJ and select for Nasty Rockers, he has DJ’d in France, Spain, Germany and Portugal to name a few.
GB has maintained his love of vinyl records; he currently has over 20, 000 vinyl records.
GB continues to distribute, press, promote and market for various reggae artist and musicians.
Tony Francis was raised in a household with his Mother, Father and 6 siblings during the mid-1960s in South London. His Mother was a devout Pentecostal Christian, bought Tony his first electric guitar, so he could join in with the rest of his older siblings, who also played instruments and sang in their gospel family band, called the Francis Band.
Tony’s early musical influences were from watching the musicians, at the Pentecostal church his family attended on Sundays in Mallison Road, Battersea. His Mother disliked secular music, and would only allow gospel music to be played in their household. However, Tony’s Father secretly exposed him to variety of 60s reggae and ska music. At an early age, his earliest musical memories are of his Father playing the Exodus album by Bob Marley and also Desmond Dekker, You Can Get It if You Really Want. Tony became obsessed with reggae music he took any and every opportunity to listen to reggae records, wherever possible.
Whilst growing up in the mid-70s Tony frequented The Wandle School Play Centre, where he met his later to become lifetime long friend Gaffa Blue, together, they were fortunate to be able to fulfil their love for music at the centre; their Youth Workers would allow them to play their own records on the communal record player. Tony monopolised the record player. No one else at the youth centre could get a look in! One of Tony’s memories is of being eager to play his first ever record purchase, Rappers Delight by The Sugar Hill Gang. Ironically, a hip hop record!
Tony later joined the Boys Brigade and also played football, at Rock Community Centre where the presiding Reverend Phillip, who applied for and arranged funding from The Princes Trust charity to fund, the purchase of sound system equipment. With the allocated funding given Tony and his peers, Reggie B, Axe, Fowl, Blackie and General T, purchased equipment and built his first full sound system, Young Prince, which was named after the housing estate they lived on in Earlsfield.
Tony was nicknamed “GT”, as his friends thought he sounded similar to the popular Jamaican 1980s dancehall Deejay, General Trees.
With his newly formed sound system, Tony “GT” Francis, began playing at local venues and house parties in South London. As word began to spread how good Young Prince was, the momentum grew, they gained a loyal following, and then emerged a new charismatic, energetic and popular Deejay Tony “GT” Francis! His Deejay persona was well and truly established.
When Tony left school he became a carpenter, following on in his Father’s footsteps. At this point his deejay career became purely a hobby.
Over the next few decades, with his new found reputation he would often be asked to Deejay over the popular larger sound systems in London, during the 90s and 00s namely King Tubby’s, Young Lion and Killa Watt to mention a few. Tony “GT” Francis became a renowned and regular deejay on the circuit, travelling throughout Great Britain with the aforementioned sound systems on weekends.
Tony “GT” Francis has for the past 5 years been the resident Deejay for Nasty Rockers sound, with his childhood friend the selector Gaffa Blue.
Tony has since outgrown the moniker “GT” and is now better known as Mr Tony “Oh Yes” Francis, he was ordained Mr “Oh Yes” Francis for his spirited, dynamic and enthusiastic personality at dances.
Tony’s distinctive, vibrant and energetic aura always electrifies and wows dancehall enthusiasts annually at Notting Hill Carnival, Brixton Splash, local festivals and sound clashes in Brixton Town Hall.
Mr Tony “Oh Yes” Francis and Nasty Rockers continue to captivate and entertain dancehall audiences around London the UK and abroad.