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Acid House Promoter Facing Jail for Bank Caper




80s rave pioneer Tony Colston-Hayter pleaded guilty this week to siphoning £1.3m from Barclays Bank using a sophisticated credit card scam, almost 25 years after he helped popularise acid house by promoting a series of huge raves in Southern England.


Colston-Hayter created a ‘less cliquey, more democratic and more profitable version of acid house’ at his Sunrise  unlicensed events, after being rejected by hipsters at Danny Rampling’s Shoom parties for his ‘old-fashioned hooray-henry behaviour’, said the Guardian’s Dorian Lynskey. (Guardian: )


“If you were a mod, a punk or a hippy, you lived those lifestyles, whereas this is a weekend youth culture,” he told one interviewer. “A city banker can shed his suit, put on his dungarees, dance all Saturday night away.”


Colston-Hayter later branded rave culture ‘totally non-political and ‘the ultimate hedonistic leisure activity’, the Guardian article noted, an assessment the paper pointed out reflects much of today’s mainstream rave-equivalent nightlife culture.


“Consider EDM’s mindbogglingly lucrative takeover of Las Vegas in recent years,” the Guardian suggested, “And you can imagine a wealthy Colston-Hayter sipping Grey Goose at Hakkasan during a Calvin Harris set.”


Visage/ electro/ new romantic pioneer Rusty Egan was one of the many nightlife industry players who commented on the Guardian article, and instead praised him for breaking down the barriers between ‘rich kids, bankers, football fans and all walks of life’. Egan also noted how authorities crushed the unlicensed rave scene relentlessly and brutally as its popularity soared throughout Britain.


“There were no problems, deaths and car crashes or fights (at the unlicensed events), not until the Police became frustrated with the organisers who had Lawyers and Cameras rolling and filmed their conduct,” he noted,


“THE POLICE and the MP’s used the tactics of criminals to ensure that the organisers were bankrupted . . .”









Jonty Skrufff


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