In 1989, Dave “Mr Bongo” Buttle opened up Mr Bongo records, which was the first shop outside the United States to sell independent hip-hop vinyl. Since then, it’s become one of the premier destinations for diggers around the globe to find fantastic vinyl gems. Thus, he’s a perfect subject for Fuse’s digital series Crate Diggers.

Buttle talks in detail about the origins of his shop and how he essentially cornered the Latin music genres. “I was going over to Venezuela with suitcases and coming back [full],” he recalls. “It was feverish at times, back in the days.”

He also details the concept of “bag boys,” where dudes would walk around Soho in London with bags of records selling them to top-notch DJ’s for large sums. “These were exciting times,” he says with a grin.

Drew Pierce

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