In the 80s and early 90s Welshman Steve Andrews was an essential contact for anyone involved in underground music especially in Britain and Europe. He championed independent sounds from the earliest days and that included his own music which was mainly an acoustic affair of protest, social and personal observations that veered into country territory and even electronica upon occasion.
his 1999 cassette released on Mick Magic’s Music And Elsewhere Label, “ The Changing Faces Of Steve Andrews”.
For me the ’90s underground music, fanzine and cassette culture served various purposes. It was a way for unsigned acts to get exposure and feedback on their music, find fans and other like-minded friends, as well as a way of exchanging whatever they wanted to promote or say. People used to send what they had and it could be a tape or a zine, and always a bunch of flyers. It was a way of sharing worldwide. There were no controls over it – it was an open market for us all.
Besides all that it gave those of us that were looking to take things further the hope that maybe one day we would be discovered and signed up by a big label.
Whatever happened, it was always a pure joy to get a load of mail that included music, fanzines and contacts from all around the world in your post. It was exciting too to see how well your music could do on charts such as Mick Magic’s Music and Elsewhere tape label charts, or to get a real playlist from a radio presenter like Lord Litter or Don Campau that showed you had been played on their show.