Back in the day Deal Real was a hive of creativity for upcoming hip-hop artists and music enthusiasts. Artists like Estelle and MK were among its staff, while its regular open mic nights gave rising MCs the platform to lay down a verse and collaborate with others; indeed, it became an early stomping ground for Skinnyman, Professor Green and Example. If you were an aspiring UK rapper, you’d be forgiven for hanging out there in the hope something profitable might rub off on you, just by shear osmosis. Even your average passer-by was sucked in like a bee to honey.
Soon enough Deal Real’s part in UK hip hop culture won international intrigue and world famous artists like Mos Def, Kanye West, GZA, Lupe Fiasco, John Legend and Amy Winehouse came to perform in-store.
On 18th April, the store will return as a pop-up at 14 Newburgh Street (just round the corner from its original plots in Marlborough Court & Noel Street). Not only is it set to feature in-store signings, one-off releases, live performances and workshops, but will also showcase prodigies in the world of art and fashion. At a time where the majority of musical discourse is retained in the online bubble, this reopening is a healthy splash of colour.
Check out these clips and you’ll see how fun, energetic and – most importantly – welcoming this store was. For further updates stay tuned to Carnaby.co.uk