Wednesday, 16 December 2015
Oliver: Fierce Ruling Diva - Rubb It In [Ruling Radio Mix] (5 January 1992)
At the time that this show went out, I was still a year away from starting to go clubbing. My own impressions of what clubbing was like were based almost entirely on old editions of The Hit Man and Her which I had had to fast forward through, while watching with an appalled fascination in the days when I had to leave a video running all night so I could record WCW wrestling, until I worked out how to set the timer on it. If you never saw The Hit Man and Her, it was a simple idea, cooked up by Pete Waterman and sold to Granada Television which saw him and Really Wild Show presenter, Michela Strachan present an evening's night-clubbing. Not just dancing or people trying to make themselves heard at the bar, but games and club PA sets, usually by The London Boys. It was simultaneously terrible and compulsive; the type of show which told you it was time to go to bed, but which you struggled to tear yourself away from, despite the fact that there is nothing worse than watching other people seem to be having a good time. Someone has posted whole editions of the show on YouTube, but I think this taster gives you an idea of the entrancing awfulness of the show, as well as Pete Waterman highlighting that non performing creative artists haven't got a rhythmic bone in their bodies when it comes to dancing.
The link between John Peel and Pete Waterman is not immediately obvious, but as this article reminds us, The Hit Man and Her was being broadcast during a period where the only chart perennials you could count on were Stock, Aitken and Waterman or acid house. In their default settings, Peel's show and The Hit Man and Her were poles apart, but Waterman admitted a love of acid house and trance music, while Peel, yet to discover variants of dance like drum 'n' bass or grime, wasn't averse to giving techno tracks an airing. His shows of the period are dotted with them among his preferred house music enthusiasms. That intersection shows itself on the brilliantly named Fierce Ruling Diva track, Rubb It In, which mashes up the quick fire-edits of house music with the Baleric piano samples and big voiced female vocals so beloved of Messrs Waterman and Strachan's after the pub extravaganza. "Need I say more?"
That was what I expected of clubbing in the run up to my 16th birthday. The reality, in Falmouth anyway, was very very different....
The video may say that this is the Paperclip mix of Rubb It In, but Peel announced it as the Ruling Radio mix, probably put together by Frank De Wulf. There were certainly enough mixes to be shared around. Regardless, this was the one Peel played on 5/1/92.
Video courtesy of picolettettauo.