Rae & Christian If you're going to talk about British Hip-Hop
you can't not talk about Rae & Christian. So who better
to talk about them than one half of the duo themselves, Mark
In 1995 Mark Rae was
contemplating releasing his own music. A year later he had set
up the first Grand Central office and had a triple vinyl "Central
Heating 1" released to a warm welcome. Two years later
the long player 'Northern Sulphuric Soul' was released to critical
acclaim that catapulted Grand Central to a truly independent
label and its creators Rae & Christian to highly desired
While the duo worked on the album they continued to work on
the label to give it the personal touch because contrary to
belief they actually give a shit.
"Well we do," starts Mark. "It's really fucking
hard what we do because it's a struggle to survive. It's touch
and go all the time and it's total commitment from DJing to
remixing to managing the other artists. We've got an Aim album
coming out soon and that's going to be a lot of money. In excess
of fifty grand has been invested for that. Which really we haven't
got and once we start that off we can't pay wages and we can't
pay rent, but we manage to survive on doing remixes and going
on tour. We're just trying to build everything, we've built
a group of people who believe in it and that's the key to it."
The pair have had some noteable success with remixing, not just
with the critics but with the fans. It could be argued it began
"They asked us to do a remix. I did the remix without giving
it to Steve, but they liked the music so much they wrote a song
on it. That song was 'Good Advice'. We released it first, then
they put it on their album "White On Blonde" four
months afterwards and the album went massive."
Whilst offers come in for remixes, feedback doesn't always come
in on works complete as some artist's don't care to listen to
the remixes, because of the business aspect but did DJ Rap have
anything to say?
"It's weird that you say that because she's the only person,"
he begins. "She rung us on her mobile and told us she loved
what we did and thanked us a lot. She responded to it because
she's a DJ and a person of our scene. No one else has done it.
You've got to understand that it's really sad. The record company
get an artist who records an album and then fucks off and waits
while the record company get on and organises remixes and tours.