Ebony Rockers: The Mural & The Film Event
Solent University Southampton’s Solent Showcase together with Montaj Media Village, Go Southampton, and Ebony Rockers’ manager, Don John have collaborated to produce a 14-minute film charting the rise of the band and marking the moment the mural was unveiled.
Celebrating 1980s Southampton reggae band, Ebony Rockers, who were recently honoured with a mural in the city centre, Solent University Southampton’s Solent Showcase together with Montaj Media Village, Go Southampton, and Ebony Rockers’ manager, Don John have collaborated to produce a 14-minute film charting the rise of the band and marking the moment the mural was unveiled. The event showcasing the film took place at Mast Studios on Saturday 7 May. 6-7pm.
The late 70s and early 80s were politically and socially vibrant times for African-Caribbean youth across the country and it was against this background that eight teenagers from around the Newtown and Nicholson areas of Southampton began playing music - inspired by the reggae artists of the day and reflecting their own lives, conditions, and aspirations.
Don John, Race & Diversity Consultant & Ebony Rockers Manger states: “Ebony Rockers were an inspiration to local people in inner-city Southampton and gave the local Black communities something they could be proud of that reflected their culture”
They were a group of young Black men and women who mostly lived in the Newtown/St Marys area Southampton. Inspired by the likes of Aswad and Steel Pulse they soon became role models for Black youth in the 80s, at a time when Black people were experiencing severe unemployment, excessive stop & search, and other forms of racism. Their music reflected those times and having reached the final of a national music competition they were signed to EMI records and played gigs across the country further establishing their reputation and carving out a space in Southampton’s music history.
Kate Maple, Curator of the Solent Showcase Gallery, said: “The Film captures the importance of Ebony Rockers to Southampton’s history, and the impact they had on the city and beyond. The mural and film are a great example of how we can creativity share Southampton's rich heritage to a wide audience."
The film can be viewed here: