Culture / music

This is Rewind

9 February 2024

Yesterday evening we popped to the opening of Rewind: This is Croydon’s Music. The new exhibition at the Museum of Croydon, celebrating our borough’s rich history of music, is a treasure trove for anyone who loves music. I always think that one of the things Croydon does well is ‘eclectic’ – whether it’s the mash-up of our cultures from all over the globe, the modern and traditional architecture, our urban and rural spaces, or the diverse music genres that range from classical and punk to dubstep, grime and drill.

Left: Greyhound flyer 1978 – courtesy of DJ Pete Fox. Centre: Bell Hill Cassettes flyer 1975 – courtesy of David Lashmar. Right: Underground flyer 1985-88 – courtesy of DJ Pete Fox.

Being a graphic designer it was a real treat for me to see some of the posters and flyers from music venues throughout the years, but I also enjoyed the juxtaposition of music artefacts on display, from Captain Sensible’s and Desmond Dekker’s outfits to Nadia Rose’s Mobo award and (my personal fave) the Beanos ‘B’ guitar.

Left: Beanos handmade Feline guitar (c) Glenn Foster. Centre: Captain Sensible outfit (c) Glenn Foster for Croydon Council. Right: Nadia Rose MOBO (c) Glenn Foster for Croydon Council.

The exhibition space isn’t huge as it’s all in one room. But is cleverly divided into five sections:

  • Music on the high street – which discusses the history of our record stores and music instrument shops over the decades (including the wonderful Rockbottom).
  • Music venues – which maps the various venues that existed in the borough past and present.
  • Music makers – which talks about notable Croydon people who have made significant contributions to the music industry, whether they be artists or producers – it’s a diverse range of talent from Stormzy (obviously), Nadia Rose and Raye, to Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, Rishi Rich and DJ Hatcha, to name just a few.
  • Music creatives – which focuses on the connection between music with art – the Croydon School of Art being integral to this history, including the Sex Pistols’ Jamie Reid and Malcolm McLaren to more recently FKA Twigs.
  • Music moments – which talks about Croydon as a destination for music, from festivals to artists on tour: back in the day we had Jimi Hendrix and the Beatles performing, to more recently the Croydon Mela and Croydon Music Festival.

There are some nice interactive touches too so visitors can get involved, from writing musical memories on CD shaped cards, to a magnetic wall of words to create your own song lyrics.

Rewind is on until 8 September 2024, every Tues/Wed/Fri & Sat from 11am-5pm, at the Museum of Croydon, Croydon Clocktower, Katharine Street, CR9 1ET

More details on the This Is Croydon website.

Artefact images supplied by This Is Croydon. Header image – detail of Underground flyer 1985-88 – courtesy of DJ Pete Fox. In situ exhibition shots by the Croydonist

Posted by Julia

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