Power of a Soundsystem | Free Word

19 June 2020
19:30 - 00:00

Presented by:
Brent 2020 and Blueprint Collective


A club night looking at UK sound system culture and the legacy of reggae-as-resistance

In light of the current situation regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) in the UK, we are revising plans for our forthcoming Finding Power season. Keep your eyes out in the coming weeks as we will be updating our season with online content, video, podcasts, articles that explore how we find power in isolation.


Music has often been a crucial tool for marginalised communities to find and challenge power – the UK reggae scene of the 1970s and 80s being a perfect example, with its politically charged lyrics and community-focused ethos.

In partnership with Brent 2020, London Borough of Culture, No Bass Like Home, and co-curated with young people from their Blueprint Collective, this energising night will feature performances, discussions and DJs exploring and commemorating the legacy of 1970s and 80s sound system culture, and how its relevance persists in today’s society and politics.

19 June 2020
19:30 - 00:00
£8 - £15

Brent 2020 and Blueprint Collective


No Bass Like Home

No Bass Like Home will tell the story of Brent’s contribution to music in Britain. During the 1970s reggae exploded in Brent: the first festival of Caribbean music took place at Wembley, Bob Marley lived in a house in 'Metroland', Janet Kay became the first British-born black female artist to score a UK number one, and the iconic Willesden label Trojan Records introduced the world to reggae. Throughout 2020 a series of 'Bass Invasions' will take the programme out to central London venues with the aspiration to elevate Brent’s reggae roots and enter museums, galleries and institutions with a national profile across the capital.

Brent 2020, London Borough of Culture

Brent is The Mayor’s London Borough of Culture for 2020. Our programme will explore the stories, art and emotions that hold life in Brent together, uncovering and celebrating its untold tales and unheard voices. We are the home of Zadie Smith, reggae, English football and its captains. We have London’s oldest road, the biggest Hindu Temple outside India, the Kiln Theatre and Mahogany Carnival Design. We are where city becomes Metroland; where roads, waterways and railways cross; where outsiders fight for their place. We are Jayaben Desai, George Michael, Cyrille Regis, Keith Moon, Rachel Yankey, Janet Kay, Twiggy, Bob Marley and Trojan Records. It is from this alchemy that our year of culture comes. Brent is more than a borough of culture: This is the Borough of Cultures.



There is step-free access to all areas of Free Word and a number of other facilities available to make the venue accessible.

• Our box office, theatre and hall are all on the ground floor with step-free access from the street
• There are two accessible toilets on the ground floor. All our toilets are individual, gender neutral cubicles.
• The foyer and café areas are our designated quiet spaces – if you need to leave the event at any time, you’re welcome to use these areas.

• The hearing loop will not be available for this event.

• A smoke/haze machine will be in use for this event.

• If you’d like earplugs, we will have a supply at the bar – just ask one of our team.

• If you need to bring someone for assistance, please get in touch with us so we can provide a free ticket for them


Please talk to our team if you have specific access requirements.


If I Feel Lonely Maybe U Do 2?

Presented by Travis Alabanza and Danielle Brathwaite-Shirley

Online performance and conversation with Travis Alabanza and Danielle Brathwaite-Shirley

Part of Finding Power season

Taking Back Power

Presented by Liv Wynter

An online workshop on spaces of care

Part of Finding Power season

Writing Futures

Presented by Ama Josephine Budge

Science Fiction writing workshops with Ama Josephine Budge

Part of Finding Power season

Speaking Under Surveillance

Presented by Maslaha and Liberty

Part of Finding Power season