I still remember how I found this little place, almost by chance, on the Calle Espiritu Santo (that’s Holy Ghost Street), where Ama began, before it moved to the Mercado de Fuencarral and then, finally, to a small place on Calle San Lorenzo. Lover of good music that I am, I listened to an infinite procession of records there, an act which led to no small internal turmoil when it came to deciding which ones to take home and which to leave behind. The quality of the musical selection was incredible.
I remember a small music fanzine called ‘Feten’ that I used to await anxiously so that I could get up to date on all the latest new releases and review what a collective called Jazzin Club had lined up for the clubs. Jazzin Club were the creative force behind the fanzine and the Ama Records store. Speak Easy, Kathmandu Club and Davahi were some of the rooms where you could hear the music you would find in Ama Records, places where you could see major artists such as Ben Wilcox (Talkin’ loud), DJ Debra (Bar Rumba), Azymuth, Herbaliser (Ninja Tunes) and a certain Aphrodite, who opened the DnB sessions alongside a renowned foreign DJ. Many of those artists had the great opportunity to be enjoyed live there and, talking of live performances, you certainly can’t miss out all those groups that supported this incredible collective either, groups like The Brand New Heavies, The James Taylor Quartet and Freak Power, to name but a few. They were unforgettable moments, redolent of the wonderful musical genre which is Acid Jazz. As well as that, Jazzin Club, an unending fount of musical culture, preached its good word among the majority of clubs and festivals the peninsula had to offer, such as the well-known Doctor Music, Sonar, Festimad, Elektronikaldia, Benicassim, Jazzaldia, Etxekalte (Donostia), Moog (Bcn), Planta Baja (Granada), Los Cinco Latinos (Santander) and Poliester (Leon).
One day I left the store with a CD in my hands, on the cover of which was a comic-style image of a cassette and the name ‘Novophonic’. I had been told only moments before that the group had collaborated with the label HiTop, for who they’d recorded some pieces. It’s also worth mentioning that the Barcelona label Cosmos also released some examples of their talent.
Currently Jazzin Club has a monthly session at the Kathmandu Club as well as continuing to man the decks at various clubs and festivals across the peninsula. They have also changed the fanzine Feten into a radio programme which can be heard on the Madrid FM waveband every Saturday from 1pm to 3pm (Radio Circulo-Dial Soul 100.4).
Ama comes to a close after fourteen years, an era that perhaps we wish was longer but which, anyway, was definitively positive and full of great moments for those behind its creation and, of course, full of the greatest sensations. Many of them, fortunately, have left their legacy in the form of indisputably high quality vinyl and CDs.
Mike Molina (Mikeen), Jose Navarrete (Nava), Jose Maria Garcia (Chema AMA), Jose Angel Diaz Duran (Jadd) and Dave Standley are the names of the guys that made up or make up part of Jazzin Club; they are the ones who are, directly or indirectly, responsible for many of us having those records that have made our lives so enjoyable, as well as those unforgettable club sessions and the musical culture which they disseminated. And they are also the ones responsible for the fact that I still look forward to putting on records that follow their musical pilgrimage… and that I sat down to write this article in acknowledgement of their fantastic work.