Spikey Tee – Between Wake and Sleep – Tokyo Dawn Records
February 24, 2020
“Between Wake and Sleep” delivers a soulful journey into the influences, thoughts and personal story of globally renowned DJ and songwriter Spikey Tee.
Turning his collaborative music mission on its head with productions from Warp Records‘ Mark Pritchard, Berlin-based Jim Dunloop and Suff Daddy, Metalheadz producer A Sides, UK producer Wai Wan and Sydney talents Ritual and Setwun, the album weaves a tapestry that twists and turns through subject matters and will resonate with whoever comes into contact with it.
Coining the genre “Patois Soul”, the album encompasses all elements of roots and sound system culture from Jamaica and UK, elegantly interweaving Reggae, R’n’B, Jungle and Hip Hop, while reflecting Spikey Tee‘s 30+ year career as DJ, master of ceremony and pinnacle of the underground sound community.
Previous highlights of his music career, such as fronting Jah Wobble‘s band the Invaders Of The Heart, pioneering UK hiphop in the late ’80s with Sindecut, touring with Soul II Soul, hitting the UK singles charts with Bomb The Bass and collaborating with reggae legends such as Horace Andy and RANKING JOE, all culminate in “Between Wake and Sleep”.
With additional family influence from his cousin Bunny wailer, the themes touched on the album include not fighting fire with fire, breaking the glass ceilings of society, managing modern-day relationships and so much more. Fire!
Spikey Tee is one of London city’s original ‘rude boys’. He has been recording and spinning tunes for over 20 years. Having been a pioneer of the UK Hip Hop scene as one of the founding members of The Sindecut. He has watched Drum and Bass grow from it.. If you are looking for a track record then Spikey Tee definitely has one. He was first involved with reggae sound systems at the age of 13 acting as a surprise selector/operator in soundclashes in and around London. It was after singing at one of these clashes, he met DJ Fingers from London hip hop crew the Sindecut who are credited as pioneers of the UK hip hop scene and was asked to contribute to an idea for expanding the group. With a love of hip hop culture Spikey agreed, the band subsequently went on to sign for Virgin Records and released the acclaimed “Changing The Scenery” album in 1990.
After The Sindecut, Spikey joined Jah Wobble‘s Invaders Of The Heart and was lead vocalist for five years. As the group’s front man he brought a real edge to their live performances, particularly when he sang The Abyssinians’ Rasta anthem “Satta Massa Gana”. Considering the quality stock from which he comes (Spikey is related to legend Bunny Wailer no less!), it was perhaps inevitable that he would so compellingly make the Rastafarian connection. Look no further than the emotive Invaders of the Heart single, “Mount Zion”, for a sublime example of this particular string to his bow.
All the while Spikey continued to DJ in and around the UK, mixing hip-hop, R&B, ragga, and drum’n’ bass. Not content to rest on his laurels, Spikey also made hit tunes for numerous producers, most notably with top-20 UK hit “Dark Heart”, recorded for Bomb The Bass, and “Paper Soldier” for Mannasseh.
After a chance meeting with Dom (Blood and Fire Records/Sound System) and Mr Scruff at a Jah Wobble concert in Manchester, Spikey Tee teamed up with the Manchester hip-hop label Grand Central for a number of collaborations. A track with Mr. Scruff, “Is It Worth It”, was received extremely well, as was “Erase The Pain” for Tony D‘s ‘Pound for Pound’ album, going on to tour with stablemate Aim as part of a 10 piece live outfit.
After striking up a relationship with Blood and Fire Records, he was included in the Sound System line up and performed around Europe with reggae legends such as Dennis Alcapone, Ranking Joe and Horace Andy. Spikey also appears on the Morcheeba album “Big Calm” and their live DVD From Brixton To Beijing, where his vocals feature on “Friction” and “Shoulder Holster”. He can also be found on Mark Rae‘s debut solo LP, “Rae Road”, on the final track “Throne” and also on Dual Control’s Grand Central Records debut album “Left Or Right” performing “Burn It Out”..
His DJ-ing, MC-ing and singing skills have taken him around the world to Australia (where he now resides), Sweden, Czech Republic, Germany, Norway, Russia, and Finland to name a few. Spikey recently collaborated with New Zealand’s Auckland based producer Andrew “Sola Rosa” Spraggon and recorded “Badman” for his 3rd album release “Moves On” and was touring New Zealand as a vocalist with the band playing several festivals. His appearance on DJ Hype‘s Ganja label on a track “Hands Up” marked his first vocal drum ‘n’ bass outing. This lead to Spikey being introduced to Potential Bad Boy by DJ Hype, they immediately clicked and recorded Submission which was released as an AA sided single including another collaborative effort entitled “Show Me”. You can also hear Spikeys inimitable vocal on True Playaz artist Crystal Clears “Blaze”. Other releases include On The Rise and Rubadouble co-produced with New Zealands Agent Alvin. The first of these tracks has been remixed by Breaks DJ/Producer Timmi Schumacher and has received excellent reviews by numerous publications and is blowing up dance floors around the world.
Most recently there have been 2 more releases, one is another double a sided effort which is a collaboration with Sydney producer Ritual entitled “Bun Dem Down” and the flip being a DJ Suv remix of a track entitled “Zero Dub” released on Suv‘s Playsides label. The 2nd is another collaboration with a very talented producer from the Czech Republic by the name of Rido (pronounced Reedoo) entitled “Life Is Strange” released on Focuz Records.
Having completed a successful dj tour of America last year, There are plans for another trip to the states where he hopes to be travelling with Prime Mover. Always a man to keep himself busy,