Punch Records got into the groove in 1997 as a Perry Barr record store selling Black music. It soon developed into Birmingham’s leading independent supplier of vinyl and their outspoken counter staff quickly became known for having sharp ideas. Today, the record store has closed but Punch has developed into a cultural resource for the city and the UK, through its advocacy for Black music, productions, festivals and innovative live music events.
Gigs and events have included a Dub To Dubstep tour that took the Channel One Sound System on the road alongside a live band. On the flipside Punch organised a meeting of spoken word and graffiti heads in The REP theatre production Writing On The Wall. They’ve also pulled together tours and staged one-off performances for artists such as South African singer Simphiwe Dana, soul and R’n'B sensation Keith Sweat or Chicago 9 piece brass band Hypnotic Brass Ensemble.
Alongside these projects, every June Punch produce BASS an annual festival spread across the Midlands. Previous festivals included working with artists such as Baby J, Skinnyman, Bashy, Sway and DJ Sarah Love (BBC 1xtra). Last year’s Africa themed BASS featured a retrospective on the life and art of Fela Kuti; this year’s event will take a different tack with the theme of DNA.
Punch are also running or supporting events related to the anniversary throughout the year, holding art exhibitions and gigs including a Nigeria 50 supergroup featuring legendary Afrobeat drummer Tony Allen.

Articles by : Punch
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FELABRATION with Dele Sosimi Ensemble 14.10.11

2011.09.23 | 0 comments
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Its always time for some Afrobeat, so why not join us for a celebration of Fela Kuti’s birthday on Friday 14th October at the Hare and Hounds.

Punch, leftfoot and Mostly Jazz presents Fela Kuti’s Birthday tribute concert is the annual event to celebrate the originator of Afrobeat. Led by Fela’s Egypt 80 keyboardist and musical director of award winning musical “FELA”, Dele Sosimi who moved to London in 1995 from Nigeria, stands out as one of the most active musicians currently on the Afrobeat scene worldwide. His dedication to Afrobeat has contributed to the development of many musical influences and interests in multi-cultural London. Covering a collection of Fela’s greatest works and tracks from Dele’s critically acclaimed albums “Identity” and “Turbulent Times”.

tickets £10 (ticketsellers)

Punch support new birmingham talent

2011.03.25 | 0 comments
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Punch are very pleased to announce the winners of our BASS/ Talent 2011 award, the Handsworth-based trio called Sherrazi, have been selected to perform as part of punch’s BASS festival in June at PST in Digbeth.

We are very excited to see how Azizi, Sherelle and Kerry (all 18) develop and grow over the next 6 months.

Here is there audition video:

Punch invites you to ‘Tuned On’

2011.02.03 | 0 comments
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Punch would like to invite you to two exciting new ‘Tuned on’ seminars for spring 2011:

Wednesday 9th March 2011


Location Location Location

Focusing on regional identity and its importance to new and emerging musical artist’s success in the industry. Can artists from less developed musical cities be a success within their location or do they have to move to more musically diverse cities to make it big?

Confirmed panellists: Ray Paul (1Xtra founder), Lee Fisher (Access to Music), Artists – Roxxxan, Trilla & Lady L

Wednesday 13th April 2011


Stream or Sell?

We know it isn’t easy earning money as a musical artist and getting your music out there is key……but at what price?

We will be looking at the range of online platforms for music as well as exploring whether the internet can be used as a  retail base and a free showcase oppertunity.

Confirmed panellists: Lee Parsons (Ditto), Dave Haynes (Sound Cloud), Artist- Jamie Dred

Places are limited, RSVP to onelias@punch-records.co.uk or call 0121 224 7444

Seminars will take place: Foyer Bar/Café Symphony Hall, Broad Street, Birmingham, B1 2EA

BASS Festival commissions now open

2011.01.13 | 0 comments
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BASS FESTIVAL would like to announce its 2011 commissions. Artists, organisations and promoters are invited to produce an event or new piece of work specifically for the festival, receiving grants between £500 – £3000.

For 2011 the theme is REVOLUTION. Through music, dance, spoken word and theatre REVOLUTION will be explored in terms of physical movement, music as a weapon of change and celebrating the creators of radical new music and styles.

This year BASS Festival is commissioning artists to make new music, dance, spoken word and theatre. Punch is looking for musicians, dancers, spoken word performers and other artists with a real passion to create exciting new work that challenges, engages and builds audiences.

Commissions  for BASS 2011 are now being accepted. In 2011 there two exciting new ways to get involved.

1. BASS Revolution Commission (up to 3k)

2. BASS/Talent 2011 award for 16-24 year olds (up to 1k)

Commission deadline: 14th February 2011

All application forms and guidance documents available here

The importance of music photography?

2010.10.22 | 4 comments
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‘What do these images tell us about ourselves, about culture and about music?’

Take time out to to have a read of Andrew Dubber’s blog, examining the value of music photography. Dubber has used examples of Pogus Caesars images from Muzik Kinda Sweet.

Let us know your thoughts…..

Tony Allen UK Tour

2010.09.15 | 1 comment
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Tony Allen (Hugo Glendinning) looking right between 2 toms

Punch touring is proud to announce the UK tour by a real legend of African music. Tony Allen will be marking his 70th birthday and the 50th anniversary of Nigerian independence with a UK tour this autumn. Kicking off at the mac (Midlands Art Centre)  in Birmingham, the five date tour with his full afrobeat orchestra will play in Leeds, London, Edinburgh, Bristol and Glasgow. Tony Allen, who played at the WOMAD festival in Charlton Park on 23 July 2010, will be promoting his CD Secret Agent and playing a special showcase at London’s Barbican.

Full 2010 tour dates are:
30 September, Birmingham mac

1 October, Glasgow The Aches

2 October, Edinburgh HMV Picture House

3 October, Leeds Wardrobe

6 October, London Barbican Centre

7 October, Bristol Metropolis

Born in August 1940, and a self-taught musician, Tony Allen began to play at the age of eighteen, a fan of American jazz but also fascinated by traditional music and with the percussion work of Ghanaian Guy Warren, who mixed traditional rhythms with the new sounds of American bebop. Invited to audition for a jazz-highlife band by Fela Kuti in 1964, he became an original member of Kuti’s Koola Lobitos highlife-jazz band and started a decades-long musical relationship.

Allen is known as the man who put the beat in Afrobeat, Nigeria’s most influential musical export – a combination of the heavy groove and universal appeal of soul with jazz, highlife, and the polyrhythms of Yoruba music. Allen’s fusion of drum styles perfectly complemented Fela’s new African groove and he recorded over 30 albums with Fela and Africa ’70 – widely regarded as Fela’s best works. He has also worked with Manu Dibango, King Sunny Ade and Ray Lema. While often returning to the Afrobeat template that made his name, in the years since Allen has also worked with a broad range of rock acts, such as Jimi Tenor,  and, to general acclaim, with Damon Albarn, Paul Simonon as the group The Good, The Bad and the Queen.

Straight No Chaser Headz + Swifty Remixes opens on 16th July

2010.07.01 | 0 comments
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Headz!: The Photographic Art of Peter Williams – A Reflection on the Straight No Chaser Years
The Swifty Remixes

Music photographer Peter Williams’ iconic images for the late-lamented Straight No Chaser magazine will be exhibited at The Sauce Gallery, Custard Factory from July. The images will feature as part of a double-bill exhibition commissioned by Punch Records, including Williams’ original images and remixes by the magazine’s former creative director, Swifty.

Scan through the back issues of the magazine and youll be blown away by the radical combinations of typografix and photography. Swifty has taken these classic spreads one step further and included in Headz are a selection of Peter Williams classics that have been specially remixed for the occasion.

The Exhibition opens on 16th July at the Sauce Gallery, 5 The Custard Factory, Gibb Street, Digbeth, Birmingham, B9 4AA.

Opening times: 10am – 6pm.

For more information please vist


Meeting Of Minds

2010.06.21 | 2 comments
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Exhibition at Sauce Gallery

14 Birmingham Artists Exhibit

14 Birmingham Based Artists present 20 peices of Work at Sauce Gallery at Custard Factory, Birmingham from 24th June

Protest: 20 Years of Campaign Posters

2010.05.24 | 1 comment
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Image form Protest Exhibition

Over two decades of social unrest and street fighting has bred a shocking body of protest publicity and posters. ‘Protest: Fight the Power: Twenty Years of the Political Poster’ is a controversial exhibition of visuals by graphic designers from around the world. Having toured Africa as part of a British Council-sponsored show is finally heading to the UK having been banned previously.

‘Protest: Fight the Power: Twenty Years of the Political Poster’ will be open to the public from 3 – 30 June 2010 from 10am – 5pm at Devonshire House, Custard Factory. Entrance is free.

Mitchy Bwoy Exhibition Now On

2010.04.27 | 0 comments
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Mitchy Bwoy has a vast portfolio of work mainly in music and clothing design and he continues to innovate & diversify. Post ‘graff’ / post ‘pop’ / post ‘whatever you like’….

The fantastic designer and artist Mitchy Bwoy’s Exhibition is now on at Birmingham’s Sauce Gallery until June to showcase some of his amazing work.

From Reggae to Roots, Balkan Beats to Bruk, Dub Step to Disco, whatever you’re into, Mitchy Bwoy is likely to have made his mark on your record collection at some point.

Working from his own London studio over the last 10 years, Mitch has carved his own niche not only in music cover design but also in illustration, fashion, and more recently, video production.

His work has become synonymous with new music and club culture, working alongside the most prominent musicians of the last decade, including Chase & Status, Amp Fiddler, Bugz in the Attic, Nitin Sawhney, Ziggy Marley, Howie B and many others.

In addition, Mitch has worked on many special projects, live paints and collaborations with other artists: 55 Roots for 55 DSL (live paint and group art show with Dragon and Shibuya from Japan), Bacardi brand development (with Mode 2) and Blak Twang/We Love You album projects with Banksy.

His reputation has also led to his inclusion in numerous art shows, such as; the Art Basel / Miami (alongside Doze Green, Swoon, Rostar), Candela Festival / Puerto Rico (with Swifty, Mode 2 and HVW8) and Loud Graphix / Berlin (with Parra, Delta, Mode 2, Swifty and Machine).

Mitch has consistently come forward with the most true visual representation of modern times.

The exhibition at the Sauce Gallery, Custard Factory, Birmingham on now until June.

For more information call Punch on 0121 224 7444

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