Well here it is, the earliest known classic Melbourne Shuffle footage to date. 31 August 1991, at the Sarah Sands Hotel in Melbourne.
Not the first Shuffler that we know of, rather the earliest video footage we know of. We'll try to stop a few arguments here before we get started ;)
- UPDATE: A few people have commented that the top Aslan is wearing looks like a PHD top with the circle and PHD letters inside the circle. This, they claim proves the footage was shot only a few years ago. PHD is a small commercial club from Sydney that opened in Melbourne in 2002. It closed down due to poor crowd sizes and tried to restart a number of times. But it never really re-established itself after it's 2003/05 peak. Today it is best known for selling it's fluro PHD hoodie seen in Shuffle vids.
However the PHD claim is nonsense, the top Aslan was wearing is a fluro PIL top using the PIL logo (pic left), which were quite common at the time in a range of merchandise styles and colors, even a PIL ring! and are still available today. PIL is Public Image Limited John (Johnny Rotten) Lydon's band after the Sex Pistols.
I shot this. It was a new night that opened and closed on that night. About 800 people turned up to the 3 level event, this footage is on the main dance floor.
It was an indie rock venue, and the pub owner lost money because nobody drank any beer. He complained 'Everybody's drinking water, I had to send home 6 bar staff."
The Sarah Sands was the sort of Hotel that had lunchtime strip shows in the front bar on the pool tables, with whipped cream.
People were just refilling water bottles in the washrooms. The pub owner even turned off the water to force people to buy beer and bottled water ! True
So here's the face of the Shuffler. I believe it's Aslan, a well known Shuffler in the two dozen or so hardcore shufflers during the Melbourne Shuffle's creation. Any oldskoolers who can verify it's Aslan, your comments are welcomed :)
I've got about 8 mins of raw camera footage so you can hear the music and try to get a feel of a very early rave done Melbourne Style.
This is how the Shuffle in all it's forms spread. Individual dancers in a crowd shuffling. The style that's commonly known today we generally call the 'classic' Shuffle. But there were as many variations as there were Shufflers. You mixed up the styles to suit your mood thru the night.
This footage is at 3am after a few hours of live acts on stage. So it's the wind down set and the crowd has thinned out, making space for the Shuffle Brigade to slink their way across the dance floor.
The little old lady is from the CWA (Country Womens Association) selling lollies (candy) to the Shufflers at 3am. She regularly came to raise charity money for the CWA. 'I know the young people like to eat them at this hour of the night' she told me, she was right ;) Munchee time home delivered ! She sold out in about 30 minutes.
Got some really nice dance footage of two other well known Shufflers. (Pic Below) The young lady, I remember well, but have forgotten her name, starts with an S, I think. She was involved in the fashion industry and regularly flew between New York and Melbourne for a fashion magazine ?
The guy on the right is old friend Paul Gaffney / DJ Krusty / Eugene. Paul had a great pink Buick (very big heavy car) which I helped push start on many a morning after a party. It was always getting a flat battery :)
Krusty's long been involved with Green Ant and Rainbow Serpent parties.
NB: Earliest known Melbourne Shuffle footage can now be seen in the GLOBAL SHUFFLE movie. www.globalshuffle.com