The Jazz Fusion Dance Movement

“The Jazz Fusion Dance Movement” (1979-86)

London Jazz Fusion Dance Movement History / Electric Ballroom
Jazz Music Chart (1982-86)

12 year old “Jazz Fusion Dancers”, Gary and Seymour Nurse
with Albert Davis and Anton-Ricardo Batista (background) in 1980

George Duke and Seymour Nurse

The George Duke Interview

Seymour Nurse and Flora Purim

“In Bed With Flora” – The Flora Purim Interview

“Get Off The Ground (The Bottom End)”

Baaska and Scavelli

“Groove Weekly” Magazine (Ralph Tee)- April 1982

The first Friday night “Jazzifunk Club” Electric Ballroom Flyer- April 1982

DJ Bülent “Boo” Mehmet Interview

DJ Colin Parnell Interview

The first Saturday night “Jazzifunk Club” Electric Ballroom Flyer- September 1981

Colin Parnell, Seymour Nurse, and Bülent “Boo” Mehmet at Ronnie Scott’s, 2010

Bülent “Boo” Mehmet, Milton McAlpine, Seymour Nurse, and Colin Parnell, 2011

17 Responses to “The Jazz Fusion Dance Movement”

  1. Jenj says:

    Dear Seymour

    Thank you so much for a truly evocative interview that goes into the real history of jazz on the dance floor in the UK.

    It is so moving to read Boo’s account & just how unaware he was of how the music that was played in those rooms changed the lives of generations to come.

    What a moving tribute to Robbie Vincent / Trevor Shakes/ Froggy & of course “The legends of the underground”:-D Legends of the underground have retained so much of the energy & integrity of the era to this day & bring it to new levels & audiences that are being inspired.

    So good to see dates showing the true trailblazers & enough evidence to make a few people perhaps reconsider what on earth they were doing, stating they were trailblazers, when clearly they were not.
    It is very overdue to see so much of the debris being blown away to reveal the true integrity of jazz fusion dance history in the UK.

    From my own perspective, I am so happy to see the real history coming through at long last, as I have stood back & watched & listened so much, only to feel disappointment. There have been times when I have had to either walk away or say nothing when so much sensationalism was flying about for decades on end. It is also refreshing to see someone being as honest about the racism from the red coat mentality of the Essex mafia front Chris Hill & as those of us who experienced it indirectly, truly knew the sinister undercurrent of ignorance, which was deeply insidious & moved through the dancing circles too.

    It just goes to show, in so many ways why there were so many vultures using a growing culture in such an exclusive covetous way to make a name for themselves. Hopefully this will make history a lot clearer to all whom truly respect the roots of this creative era & show respect for those who made it possible & the dancers who celebrated such incredible music. When you look throughout history, there are chameleons that come in on the fringes after or even during a creative force breaking through & hijack it, for their own personal gain. It needs to be aired, as it has always been the case & for me this interview blows the cover on generations of capitalising on culture, which is inevitable, however when the true integrity is tampered with, that is when I have felt it has done such a disservice to such an inspired turning point in history, as well as forgetting that the origins of both the music & dance did not originate in Essex, come on.

    From my perspective I have dipped in & out on the fringes over the years, after leaving the scene in the early 80’s only to observe how so many people tried to take the true integrity of an era that was truly unique & was instrumental in inspiring so many popular Dj’s to date, as well as dance culture. The dancers of that era danced all night & broke through the inspirational stratosphere to create a vibe that was divine raw & timeless all at once. There was also a unique sense of style & very much feeling part of something special. There has been too much emphasis put on the jazz rooms feeling threatening, in all my early years in that scene, I felt more threatened walking into a pub or a club where there was too much emphasis on drink & I can truly say there was etiquette that I miss so much from those early dance floor days. Which was absent in the soul mafia scene.

    It is also so moving to read how passionate Boo felt about music that was not even being played at parties, it was still a very soul/ funk/ reggae vibe at parties at that time. The jazz was being played in small intimate groups after we purchased new albums. It is important to mention that the early jazz dancers were very informed, discerning, artistically minded people as a whole & I want it said for the record also the stereotype of many of the Afro descent dancers being unemployed is tosh.., which I have just read from another source. Dear friends held blue chip positions in computer technology in those days, as well as social workers, designers’ writers & trades/crafts persons. To suggest that the dancers were only good as they had so much time on their hands is basically not acknowledging reality. It has always been the case in history that artists struggle between the balance of work & time to be true to their passion, as Boo puts so well.

    Well as always I am getting so carried away with how I feel about that era.

    Simply to say such a big thanks to you Seymour for creating this platform, which you have put so much time effort & love into.

    It is a remarkable account of an era I grew up in & am glad to see you representing it in a true light.
    Respect & thanks for all you have done for keeping it in context & such a touch putting the album covers up.
    Big respect to Boo also.

    Kind regards

    Jenj

  2. Jenj says:

    Dear Seymour
    Thank you again for the interview by Colin Parnell & thank you Colin for remembering Froggy AKA Steve Howlett. It is very interesting as Froggy’s roadie has just come across pretty much most of Froggy’s PA. No doubt he will read this & leave a comment.

    Very moving interview & it’s good to see some of the dancers being mentioned & how knowledgeable we were musically. Some of the dancers also held great parties, dancing continued into the morning light, as well as Trevor Shakes amazing club following.

    Thank you to all the Dj’s that made the era possible & a special thanks to Seymour Nurse for making this space in celebration of all that evolved from that time. Without people like you on the World, history could have become distorted for good. As well as all the time & energy you have put into this space to make this possible.
    Peace & happy trails to all…
    Jenj

  3. Paul Leney says:

    Hey Seymour!….as always, amongst all the other great reads, a fantastic article on Colin Parnell & Boo!…..always a pleasure to see and hear you play down @ Shiftless Shuffle when I can get there…..I’ve always been fascinated with the music/dancers & DJ’s years ago hearing about it all from Jerome and hearing George Power on the radio back in 1991 with Paul Anderson….now being able to read more about those days is great…its fantastic for people like me who now get the opportunity to hear these DJ’s, being too young to attend Crackers, JazziFunk etc. its pretty amazing to see how passionate you are about the music you love….it certainly shows when your behind the decks too!….keep tracking these Legendary guys/artists down…a modern day Lt. Columbo you certainly are!…..When I read these stories, it really makes me appreciate how lucky I’ve been to be able to work/DJ alongside yourself, George Power, Paul Anderson, Perry Louis and many others….so a massive thank you again for your support at past Deep Fried – Jazz Soul & Funk charity events!…I look forward to seeing you soon…fantastic read too Jenj…how luck you were also to have been there…

    Paul Leney

  4. Jenj says:

    Hi Paul Leney
    Thank you so much… Yes I felt so fortunate being there. Good to see the passion living on through you & great comment “Columbo”, spot on! Seymour found a tune I haven’t listened to in 29 years…..been blown away; he is such a star. He is so passionate about good music. Feel very fortunate to be able to come on here & say thank you to everyone who lives it.
    Happy trails to you:-D Paul
    Jenj

  5. Justina says:

    Oh my lordy..
    Just sat with you and Flora…
    So moved
    So emotionally tweaked
    So blissed out by her spiritual contribution to the music that has nurtured my ears.. for years..
    So many beautiful stories!!!
    That trip to NYC where she went to Harlem’s jazz club and was let in by Monsieur T Monk.. Who sat her next to Nica.. The main woman watching over so many precious souls in those times.. And it was party party from then on.

    I love her.

    I felt her so, up front and personal, like I was hanging out on that purple robed bed too!!!

    And that hilarious story about having just given birth and Chick’s like, but when can you get here???

    Looking at you both hanging out there,
    Your bodies and feet and smiles both felt and looked perfectly relaxed and quietly touched by angels wings:-)

    Lit in Light from inside.

    Ugh…
    Flora Purim Wings is just on now..
    Ouch!
    The beginning journey is just..
    Too yummy.

    Anyway my dearest One!

    Thank you for that beeeUuutiful interview..

    Totally aligning… She is divine and was THERE with them ALL..
    And gave us such goodies.

  6. Hey Seymour

    Thanks so much for discovering that we were the artists on the original pressing of
    “GET OFF THE GROUND (THE BOTTOM END)” and then discovering us languishing away down here in the tropics. We had completely forgotten that we had cut that demo back in the 70’s and have no idea how a copy found its way to a 2nd hand bin of LPs in London, and no idea it had become a favorite amongst you innovative jazz dancers.

    Meeting you in person in Amsterdam was a real treat, and some mad bicycle rides.

    We love you.

    Baaska and Scavelli
    http://www.donbaaska.com

  7. Dear Seymour,

    The Bottom End is an amazing website. All the interviews and information are presented in such a tasteful, respectful, factual, and classy fashion. The Jazz Fusion Dance Movement is quite amazing and unique. As a person, you are an example of how beautiful and upstanding human beings can be, and you’re an inspiration.

    I think the interview you did with my brother Barry Miles is great, and he’s mentioned how pleased he is with its accuracy and tasteful presentation. He really digs you, and so do I.

    Here’s wishing you the best of luck with this blog and all your creative endeavors!

    Terry Silverlight
    http://www.terrysilverlight.com

  8. Janet Lawson says:

    dearseymourdearfriend,

    There just may be no words to convey the depth of gratitude and appreciation in my heart for all you offer – in friendship, in support of my singing (before, my illness and now in my recovery) and in your love of the music. Your spirit is so luminous it spans continents, time zones, frames of reference, seeming limitations in the mind – and just presents presence – a noble gift!

    All you have given to the music from your heart (I loved your time with Flora, too!) infuses all of us with more passion and commitment to continue birthing it, hearing it, loving it, sharing in it, abundantly.

    Thank you, dear Seymour, for creating an intergalactic connection for music of the spheres.

    You are loved…..

    Frommyhearttoyours,
    Janet
    http://www.janetlawsonscats.com

  9. dearjanetdearfriend,

    Thank you for your kind words and precious friendship.

    I had so much fun just now hearing you play the trumpet down the telephone, and you have only had three lessons… I find that quite outstanding.

    You always said that you “sing like a horn”, and now you’re playing one, how exciting!!! I look forward to hearing more intergalactic solos from you on trumpet.

    Frommyhearttoyours,
    Seymour

  10. Janet Lawson says:

    dearseymourdearfriend,

    And to you for your precious friendship and kind words, my endless gratitude….you continue to inspire me to take new steps – the latest recommended by my Feldenkrais teacher, Andrew Gibbons, to untangle the diaphragmatic muscles and develop strength by tooting my trumpet mouth piece. I’m glad you heard some of my choice sounds – sustained tones and half notes!!
    AND, also my joy to you for your AMAZING vocal recreation of my solo on SO HIGH (the last chorus before the out head) – remarkable!!!! Your ears are so tuned in! I look forward to the day when we can offer that together. I’ll have to brush up on what I did!

    Intergalactically, frommyhearttoyours,
    Janet

  11. Byron Morris says:

    Brother Seymour,
    You have really been an advocate for the music of Byron Morris and Unity.
    The two interviews that you have conducted with me; in 2009, and again in 2011, were very indepth, and could be the basis for a future book on the same subject, etc.
    I want to thank you for your very keen insight and interest in the Band Unity, and also my musical back-ground and personal history. I have enjoyed the experience very, very much. All the very Best to You… Please keep in contact, and keep listening!!!

  12. Byron Morris says:

    Most Musically & Sincerely,
    Byron Morris

  13. Foster George [Mutley] says:

    Glad to see that people are seeing through the hype, with all these pirates, as Horace the dancer called them, trying to make a name for themselves, as if they were at the cutting edge of the scene, when in fact, they were just about on the sidelines. Again well done for highlighting that the Essex scene was not the beginning of it all. As If. Perhaps it did begin with the racism more like. Did anyone ever go to Oxford House in Bethnal Green? I remember that club being off the hook. Like a Harlem speakeasy. It was run by one of the [black brother] elders of the scene, Victor Charles, who became a GB karate champion, 6/7 times i’ll have you know.

  14. There is only a small percentage of the population that fully understands what makes jazz, Jazz. Seymour Nurse is one of those people. To have his interview of me on his website, The Bottom End, is an honor.

    Dr. Clare Fischer
    Composer/Arranger/Keyboardist

  15. Seymour Nurse has cleverly assembled a wealth of information here for your enlightenment so pay attention(!) and then please help spread the word. All the best!

    Brent Fischer
    Composer/Arranger/Director of the Clare Fischer Bands

  16. Kenny Park says:

    Seymour, Thank you for your inquisitive mind that you have. The hard work that you put into your craft, and the sharing of love to others. I’m forever grateful to be part of something bigger than myself.

    Kenny Park
    Drummer on “Get Off The Ground”

  17. Leigh Tee says:

    What a true informative and factually correct website of the origins of Jazz Fusion history that has been previously hijacked and missold as the truth by others. The real roots are established on this website and cannot be hidden away like many other innovators who have been scrubbed out of the rich history by those keen to keep them down and blow their own trumpet. Unfortunately for them, this website reveals the true origins of this Jazz Dance history and the true innovators that were involved and brought this wonder to fruition.

    Leigh Tee

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