By R.O.A.R’s graphic designer, Sam Worlledge

I was 17 and had just moved to Oxford. Making new friends in a new area never happens straight away especially when you’re waiting to start a new college course.

I’d not spoken to my oldest friend Tom – R.O.A.R’s creator and host, who I’ve known since I was in nappies – in a while, but out of nowhere he calls and tells me to jump on a train to London to join him and his crew to a rave called Slammin’ Vinyl at The Sanctuary in Milton Keynes.

Friday arrived and I jumped on that train. The rest of the night is a little blurry, but I remember being blown away by the whole experience. I still remember some of the messy moments, but we don’t need to talk about those…right now, at least!

Partying with Tom became a regular thing, usually heading to London once a month to meet up with his crew at the pub, before jumping in a car or a train to some random provincial town to bounce around to loud rave music until dawn.

We even all went on a raving holiday to Ibiza, where I managed to get sunstroke on the first day. Ibiza didn’t compare to an eight-hour trip to Bagleys or The Sanctuary, in my opinion.

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Growing up, I’d spend months and sometimes years searching through record shops trying to find the tunes I’d heard at these raves and would always be so excited when I found one. I’d feel like running around the record shop like I’d just found Willy Wonka’s Golden Ticket. But instead I’d just nod my head and gently tuck it under my arm to buy – after all, it’s not the appropriate thing to run around a record shop!

Years passed and both Bagleys and the Sanctuary closed. Gutted! I finished college and headed to Bournemouth to continue my education – which happens to be the football team Tom supports. Up The Cherries! Tom’s brother was also about to start uni in Bournemouth, while Tom was studying in Southampton. We were always close to one other and would meet up for the occasional Bournemouth game followed by the pub and the odd sesh – and a rave, of course.

Many raves, free parties, club nights and house parties later, and I move to Brighton to start working for a company doing graphic design. Graphic design has been a big part of my life for a very long time. Other than making and listening to rave music, there’s nothing else I’d rather be doing.

Me and Tom have stayed in touch and we still usually go to a rave or two each year – we recently went to a Calling The Hardcore event in Brighton with DJ Seduction, DJ SS and DJ Jedi, in a storm which saw us knocked about like a buzzing ride on the waltzers at Helter Skelter.

A couple of months ago, Tom hit me up again and explained his plan to launch a ‘90s rave podcast, asked if I could help with graphic design and fancied being involved. Getting to do what I love doing, plus ‘90s rave music? Sign me up!

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You’ll see my handiwork – including pimping up Grantus Art’s wicked logos and rave art – spread around our website as well as on our YouTubeFacebookTwitter and InstagramSoundcloud and Mixcloud accounts and I hope you like it – there’s plenty more to come…

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