Urbanista catch-up with Adam Hartfree

Urbanista catch-up with Adam Hartfree

Slap bang in the middle of Liverpool’s clubland is the Parr Street Studios, A world-renowned studio who’s list of who has passed through the doors, would look like the complete musical history of Glastonbury . In the middle of the Parr Street Studios complex the creative space that houses the headquarters of Sounds Good Productions Ltd, a recently revived production outfit ,whose recent move from London Road, to be closer to the creative centre of Liverpool , was a strategic one .
The primary purpose of Sounds Good Productions is to tap into the wealth of local creative talent , get them on to a basic recording and get the finished article mastered in the studios downstairs. This doesn’t cut any corners it just makes the recording journey shorter.

At the head of SGP is Adam M Hartfree the CEO who has a world of experience in entertainment and hospitality, and is a story on his own.
Adams closest associate is Chris Woolf, a very accomplished singer/songwriter, who regularly takes part in the Acoustic Underground at the Everyman & Playhouse and other well-known venues around the city. He is a seasoned artist with a wealth of gigs across Europe and the USA under his belt.

Chris Woolf

Chris is currently recording and producing his debut album, which is alongside his primary role of working with Adam in the company on present and future projects.
The main element of what they produce is of a dance focus , but they are open minAt the head of SGP is Adam M Hartfree the CEO who has a world of experience in entertainment and hospitality, and is a story on his own.

ded to all types of new music, new ideas and will listen to anything creative , you never know where the next big thing will come from.

The secondary focus of SGP Is all about organising concerts and festivals, it is already underway and still in its infancy in terms of growth. This is Adams` territory, this is where he thrives. By his own admission “ I like to see people enjoying themselves”. This is probably inherent in him, he remembers the days when his family ran a pub in the town center of Skelmersdale called “The Viking.” His idea for instruments to be left out for the occasional wandering musician to take to the stage, or a full on reenactment of Led Zeppelin minus amps, sold pints.

Nevertheless he finds his vocation, he has seen a niche to bring two parties together, the promoter is born.

Lets skip forward a few years . Detroit House, known back then as “acid house” makes an appearance. Its influence grew, because a change was needed in the general club scene.
Young people liked it , it was associated with drug taking by the mainstream press ,smileys were appearing everywhere . So the BBC first banned D-Mobs- We Call It Acieed, the rest of House music quickly followed and with that, nearly all clubs banned it, or at the very least, limit it to few tunes a night ,for fear of repercussions from the licensing authorities and the Police.

This left an open door, and one which Adam M Hartfree would step through

There wasn`t anywhere to listen to House music, so after the clubs shut, Adam and a few friends went into a well-known block of flats in Tanhouse, Skelmersdale with the intention to sculpt their own nightclub , the word spread, the next week even more came. The demand was there.

Adams “facilitation” of the legendary 175 club in Skelmersdale in 1988 was one such place. A few interior design alterations later the `175 club` was born. Populated mainly by the Tanhouse Riot Squad at first (aka The T. R. S.) Word quickly spread far and wide, and the “club” had to be made bigger. This meant taking out some supporting walls and putting in Acrow Pillars to increase the capacity of the building. The changes led to the `clubs` eventual demolition.

Adam took his team down the road to `the Underground club` in Liverpool . This was one of the few clubs prepared to run the risk of playing house music openly. It was around this time that Adam met Tommy Smith and they started working together , they were looking around Blackburn and the rest of the North to `facilitate` parties. This `facilitation` in Blackburn led to people travelling from all four corners of the country to attend and so followed the absolute explosion of the House music scene.
The history of promoters and what they had to go through in the early days has little documentation, save a few court appearances .They are the people who got everything coordinated, took the risks with the deposits for sound systems, generators,and DJs. They looked a prison term in the eye, every time they saw a Policeman .

Adam and Tommy (pictured left in negotiations) are being represented by SJ Media Group who are , in turn representing their interest in Hollywood for a film synopsis with script writers. They are putting forward their version of events on how the `facilitators` played a major part in the biggest music revolution since Punk.They are the real architects and their story needs to be told. This will be a very interesting and exciting story.

All the end users of Adams` and Tommys`facilitating` , will be watching this space, with just more than a little interest. Urbanista will keep you posted on developments as they arise.
Adam became a legitimate promoter in 1991, with the foundation of his company, from there he had club nights in Liverpool, Blackburn, Blackpool, Southport, Wigan ,and Warrington.

After talking to him at length , the whole philosophy of SGP has its shared values based in social justice, which is an admirable quality in the music industry. Adam does a lot of charitable work in the community, he put on a fundraising concert for the Liverpool Homeless FC early last year in May .And he provided an artist and PA system for Duncan Bannatynes sponsorship of Operation Smile in his Skelmersdale Gym , which incidentally was Bannantynes leading fundraiser in the country with £2800. And earned himself alongside the area manager Iain Black a personal thank-you from Duncan.

Sounds Good Productions Ltd founded the Parr Street Mods , this helped Adam to forge a friendship with Nikki Weller ( pictured left on the Town Hall balcony), who brought the successful “About The Young Idea – Jam Exhibition` at the Cunard Building, to Liverpool .This led to a large scooter ride out from the Strand to Parr Street on the final day of the exhibition, and an after show reception at Studio 2 .

Its sister group Parr Street Rocks was started and recently hosted The Vim Dicta last summer while on their UK tour. They are an underground band from LA , which will give you an idea of the diverse approach of Sounds Good Productions Ltd

Going forward, there isn`t a shortage of ideas for the future , some of which can`t be mentioned at the moment, but with the likes of Lee from Big River City coming in for creative meetings, might give you some idea of what to expect in the future.

Adam has a personal ambition is to be the Lord Mayor of Liverpool. It didn’t raise any eyebrows when he said this, I just know its a definite possibility, in view of his past
achievements . Here is a list of the Lord Mayors duties

  • Representing the city at civic functions and engagements.
  • Promoting the city nationally and internationally.
  • Supporting local charities & community groups.
  • Attending religious events from all denominations.
  • Meeting delegates from twinned cities.
  • Chairing council meetings
  • Conferring honorary freemen & associations.

A lot of above has already been done by Adam on a private scale, so he won`t have any trouble completing it in public office. He has a plan to become a councillor of Wavertree to start the process off. He believes it will happen after a series of epiphanies , so much so he had his photo taken testing out the Lord Mayors big chair on his recent tour of Liverpool Town Hall with Nicki Weller.

So if theres anyone with any creative ideas and they want to take them forward Sounds Good Productions Ltd will only be too happy to hear from you .

About Author


Producer of Urbanista Magazine's podcasts and a pivotal partner of the magazine, Russell leverages his expertise and network to spotlight the rich tapestry of talent that Liverpool offers.