Crazy, bad and dangerous, the legendary Hacienda nightclub can be an unforgiving place. Just ask the Queen of Pop Madonna, who gave her first gig outside of New York in the old warehouse in 1984.
The crowd of 500, all with free tickets, were so overwhelmed by her imitation of the huge success of Channel 4’s The Tube, they threw food and beer at her. that. Even another £50 offer could not convince her to return.
But the two-year-old Manchester club, which helped give birth to the acid house and “Madchester” scene of the 1980s and early ’90s, was destined to become an icon of counterculture. No one has seen a club like it before.
It helped launch the careers of iconic bands, including The Smiths, The Stone Roses, Happy Mondays, James and Primal Scream. And names like Culture Club, Simple Minds, Alison Moyet and OMD also played there in their early days. Former Hacienda DJ Mike Pickering said: “Lots of names played at the club before they were successful but very few came back after they were successful.”
The club was the idea of New Order director Rob Gretton and Factory Records boss Tony Wilson, who wanted to bring the vibrant post-punk New York club scene to the UK.
It was cash at first, but by 1987, club members – from lawyers to bricklayers – lined up around the area to get in as the age of super DJs arrived and Ecstasy culture is maintained.
Discs that spin for the first time on its turntable, such as Black Box’s Ride On Time, have become global hits. But the pills and thrills gave way to violence and drug cartels, and the party ended when it closed in 1997. The venue is now a block.
The club’s musical heritage is celebrated every year with concerts of Hacienda Classics, orchestra performances of its much-loved recordings.
And to mark its 40th anniversary, some of Hacienda’s biggest names share their memories…
Shaun has been at the forefront of the Madchester scene and is a regular on “The Haci” with his indie band Happy Mondays, who have had huge hits with singles including Step On and Kinky Afro.
The 59-year-old singer said: “Forty years is a long time but it goes by so quickly, it feels like yesterday – like five minutes ago. Time goes by very quickly.
“Most of Haci’s time before 1987 was cold and empty, unless there was a certain band active, like James or the New Order, or The Smiths. By 1987, when the DJs arrived, it was always full – by 9pm there would be people queuing around the building every night from Wednesday to Saturday.
“I remember meeting James when they were really big in indie and Morrissey playing with The Smiths with daffodils in his back pocket. I have been there any time there is a live band.
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“Obviously a lot of them, including some of the actions we still play with now, like Primal Scream and Peter Hook, have increased a lot. But they were also huge for us at the time, and you’ll always see people like James in the NME.
“I was there that night in 1984 when Madonna was also playing. She’s not very well known outside of New York but Haci was modeled on that New York setting, so it makes perfect sense for her to play there – it’s like playing a gig in a New York warehouse. , and that’s the idea.
“It’s great. We’ve had it good for a few years but nothing lasts forever.
“We’re still performing as Happy Monday and that’s better than ever. I’m still very proud to have been associated with Factory Records – we were approached by different London labels but they were the only ones we wanted to sign.
“And the legacy is still evident in Manchester today – people still want to see Hacienda music now like they were back in the day.”
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One of the few women at the forefront of the field, singer Rowetta debuted at Hacienda in 1988 and joined Shaun Ryder and monstrous dancer Bez in Happy Mondays in 1990.
The 56-year-old was struck by the great atmosphere of the club when she first went there in 1987 and saw a black girl who seemed to know everyone, and thought: ” I want to be her.”
She said: “A few years later, walking into Hacienda, I was her. Girls would come up to me and say, ‘I want to be friends.’ I’m addicted to this place – every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, I’m there. “
Rowetta became Queen of Madchester and appeared as herself in the 2002 film 24 Hour Party People, starring Steve Coogan as Hacienda’s late co-founder Tony Wilson.
Rowetta, who has sung on the Simply Red and Groove Armada albums, recalls the incredible times with Tony but said the club went from great to horrible and terrifying.
The star, who remains close friends with Bez and Shaun, said: “I’m still very proud of those times and what they stood for.
“I still live in Manchester and I still carry the flag for Manchester. The legacy is incredible – the whole world knows about Hacienda. Nothing compares to Hacienda in its heyday.”
“Super DJ” resident Dave Haslam performed at Hacienda more than 450 times between 1986 and 1990 – and he credits the club with helping to restore Manchester’s declining identity and fuel its rise it’s from the post-industrial gloom.
Like other British cities of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s time, Manchester was suffering from growing youth unemployment and its landscape ravaged by rotting cotton mills and landfills. Abandoned bombs have not been rebuilt since the Second World War.
Dave, 60, said: “The North of England is tough – it feels overlooked and politically victimized.
Manchester Evening News)
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“The UK is very much dominated by London, so we created our own independent culture. From all that nonsense comes a visionary daydream to what we’re doing. “
The International Music Summit, taking place in Ibiza, estimates that electronic dance music festivals and clubs now have a global value of £2 billion annually – and the attractions and Madchester’s bar continues to influence artists everywhere today.
Dave said: “The music, the clothes, the atmosphere… Hacienda is amazing. And that still exists in today’s Manchester. “
Dave’s book, Not All Roses: The Life and Times of Stephen Cresser, is out.
Stephen Cresser, better known as Cressa, was the fifth member of The Stone Roses and inspired the band’s iconic baggy style – along with its psychedelic sound.
The 56-year-old recalls Ecstasy being part of the Hacienda night, which inevitably drew drug dealers into the club.
He said: “Club nights are catastrophic until that bloody drug comes along and then there will be 200 people queuing just to get on the guest list. It got pretty crazy.
“I can remember Mike Pickering playing Farley Jackmaster Funk for the first time, Love Can’t Turn, and it was like, ‘Wow, what is this?’ No one has heard anything like it. It just blew my mind. It’s epic – and to hear it in Hacienda.
“By 1990, it was all too much for me – it was just tourists. Then, in 1992-93, I was out of there – it was all about guns, gangsters, drugs. There’s too much money. It’s not for me. I was there for a good time.
“I really love that place. I miss it.”
Peter ‘Hooky’ Hook
Legendary Joy Division and New Order bassist Peter Hook, aka Hooky, helped found the club in 1982. Salfordian, 66, said: “Hacienda was built to bring together all the founders. strange and out of place together, somewhere where they can celebrate life.
“It’s the growth mindset of Rob Gretton and Tony Wilson – it’s amazing what they’ve achieved.
“Hacienda Classical has brought it back to the top. That’s great, especially when I think it’s a terrible idea.
“I’ve been stealing from the orchestra for so long, it’s nice to have something in return. Music has a lot to do with its legacy. Many people associate Hacienda’s music with very important moments in their lives.
“They’re playing these songs, many of which are one-hit wonders and people have never seen them perform live, so putting the world of classical together – and not just for four performers. performance for 70 performers – it’s an amazing sight.
“Tony and Rob will probably be shocked. I think Hacienda has been in my life for 40 years now. If I could go back and talk to the 26 year old girl then, what would I say? Be sure to go! ”
https://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/celebrity-news/shaun-ryder-peter-hook-share-27146794 Shaun Ryder and Peter Hook share memories of the club where Madonna gave her first UK gig