Operations code name: Ranx
Specialist: Killer Bass / stealth assassin
Seyi Operations code name: Stix Specialist: Drumming / explosives
Hamzah Operations code name: G86 Specialist : Rydim code-breaker / dub specialist
Floyde: Operations code name: ? Specialist : Lyrical firearms / Striker
Reggae music for the 21st century, with a London sound.
One Style – one LOVE, one style of music – reggae
M.D.V. Many Different Variations – To emphasise and demonstrate the different styles of reggae and beyond within the bands repertoire.
ONE STYLE MDV are a reggae band that have been
together for over 20 years friends and through several transformations. They made their name on the live circuit in the 80’s and 90’s with fresh sounds and concepts within the world of reggae. Beginning their journey within the local community scene in the London boroughs of Hackney and Islington, the band soon started to build up a regular underground following and a reputation for their professionalism and reliability. One Style’s gigs ranged from charities / community events, the pub circuit and clubs. As the bands sound improved through maturity, they were soon in further demand from larger events across London with organisations such as the Notting Hill Carnival, Anti Racism festivals, Anti Apartheid etc and had massive critical success on the alternative circuit around greater London.
MDV have always maintained their aim to play live music which is what they have enjoyed the most. Their unconventional simple line up of bass, guitar and drum has surprised audiences due to their overall sound, the dynamics they create and the movement within their music which has always set them apart from the rest. They have always been described as ‘Tight’ which is their trademark.
The bands objective has always been to ensure that their lyrics had meaning which are uplifting or encourages the listener to think about themselves and the world we live in to compliment the music. This added strength to the music is what has connected them to diverse communities and audiences they represent. Incorporated with their individual personal influences that range from classic reggae, roots a nd culture, soul, blues, jazz, ska, rock, Hip Hop etc, its difficult to pigeon hole the band or put them in a single category although they have been compared to Steel Pulse, Sly and Robbie, The Wailers, Burning Spear and even The Police.
One Style MDV have been blessed by being in a position to share the stage with a number of artists and gained respect from their contemparies for what they had to offer the world of reggae. They’ve played with the legend Burning Spear as well as Gregory Isaacs, Aswad, Maxi Priest, Misty in Roots, Winston Reedy and The Mad Professor. Of course being on the alternative scene, the band has shared the stage with bands from the world of rock such as the Asian Dub Foundation, Super Furry Animals, The LA’s, Yr Anhrefn, The Blaggers, The Levellers and Back To The Planet.
An important influence for the band was when they played with Joe Strummer of The Clash extensively during a 24 date Rock Against The Rich tour of Great Britain where they built up a lasting friendship and mutual admiration. Joe Strummer requested One Style MDV to be his support band throughout his own tour the following year as he believed in the bands message and energy.
The natural progression has been for One Style MDV to travel and again they’ve been blessed by being able to express themselves to lovers of reggae in Spain, Belgium, France, Germany and Ireland. The band played to great success at every venue and the most rewarding aspect was the response from people after the shows to sit down and ‘reason’ due to the overall vibes created on the night. This has also been another solid trademark of the band who recognise that communication is the key.
New Direction – Sweet Reggae Music
M.D.V. in its new format will inevitably continue to produce reggae that will stretch the perception of those who presume ‘they know’. The band has always used its own original material and have only scratched the surface in terms of what they can offer. Their ‘live’ sets are what has established them as a force to be reckoned with as audiences benefit from hearing a different rendition of their material. The recording format is simply another place to experiment and the future is bright.
Always making new friends and connections, MDV’s commitment and dedication has inspired younger artists and musicians to maintain their dreams and take the industry more seriously. MDV have been working in collaboration with a number of local artists and it was for this reason why it felt more appropriate for the name to change as the vibes and numbers grew stronger although the core of the band remains the same. The example would be with Korus who are a three piece vocal group from Hackney who write their own songs but have combined forces with MDV to execute a modern soulful reggae sound on ‘Keep It Real’.