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Paul Wellings

Paul Wellings

Paul Wellings (pictured here with the great Barry White) is a British journalist, author, DJ, musician and broadcaster. Wellings was born and raised in the London overspill and the East End, the eldest son of a P.E. teacher and school assistant and grandson of a famously altruistic Miner. He attended the famous free Anna Scher Drama School in Islington, North London (where Kathy Burke, Spandau Ballet's Gary and Martin Kemp and Phil Daniels went).

After starting his journalistic career on regional newspapers, Wellings was lucky to land a prestigious freelance job on the music press with the New Musical Express (NME), thanks to iconic Editor Neil Spencer. He was one of the first to write about the R&B/Hip Hop scene and its links with the soccer casual movement. He hates name droppers (as he told The Pope recently!) but has interviewed hundreds of diverse musicians including Public Enemy, Lady Leshurr, Frankie Goes To Hollywood, The Rolling Stones, The Sex Pistols, The Specials, LL Cool J, Queen Latifah, Yellowman, Paul Weller, Jazzie B, Natalie Cole, Ian Dury, Norman Jay, The Wailers, Gregory Isaacs, John Martyn, Ronnie Scott, and random oddities like Hollywood actor Christian Slater, activist Tony Benn and the notorious Reggie Kray. He also worked on the Daily Mirror and London’s Evening Standard, writing about sport, music and showbiz.

Paul has appeared on numerous TV shows discussing football, black music, youth culture, soccer casuals, and pirate radio. He was interviewed for the major ITV music series ''S.O.U.L'' about underground music. He has written seven books on popular culture: This is the Modern Word, East Ending, The Chaps, I'm A Journalist... Get Me Out Of Here!, Spend It Like Beckham Sex, Lines and Videotape and The Divine Comedians, plus the screenplay Thieves. In the early 1980s his punk-reggae group the Anti Social Workers released the LP Positive Style, produced by the legendary reggae producer the Mad Professor (of Massive Attack fame) spitting lyrics over his dub tunes, to rave reviews. The group supported reggae royalty Peter Tosh (Bob Marley's partner) and Eek A Mouse on tour and did well in the Japanese reggae charts.

As a sideline Wellings was a rare grooves DJ with underground radio stations Laser and LWR (the station that launched Radio 1's Pete Tong, Westwood and Maxi Jazz from Faithless). He has DJ'd at Ministry Of Sound in London and Pacha in Ibiza. He was one of the first DJs to play Public Enemy and Soul II Soul on air anywhere in the world and was a B-Boy DJ as a teenager. In the 1990s he moved into Media Relations as well as being a freelance journalist for The Independent. Now he just DJs, performs spoken word and writes when he can. He is married to the cousin of the late great reggae superstar Sugar Minott. He is fuelled by socialism, the love of a good woman and West Ham United.




Read Paul's article on famous film quotes

7 articles

By Artist | By Date

List of articles in the library by date

Eastie Boys: Real Life in London's East End

Report by Paul Wellings, The Evening Standard, 24 July 1987

IT IS A HOT day in London’s East End. I’m sitting in my home of Stepney, sipping an ice-cool lager outside the infamous Blind ...

The Badder the Better: Soulboy Life in London

Report by Paul Wellings, The Evening Standard, 31 March 1988

IN LONDON TOWN, they’re funking till they’re raw. From badland clubland they’ve voted with their feet for black soul music. Pirate stations like ...

Anti Social Workers and Me

Book Excerpt by Paul Wellings, 'I'm A Journalist...Get Me Out Of Here', 2004

UNLIKE MOST music journalists, I didn't want to be in a band. I'd signed a record deal a year before through the legendary dub producer ...

John Lydon: Lydon and I

Book Excerpt by Paul Wellings, 'I'm a Journalist...Get Me Out of Here!', 2004

I BLUFFED my way into journalism and am still bluffing in the PR world. If the truth were told, most journalists are bluffers to some ...

The Rise and Rise of the Casual: Football and Music

Book Excerpt by Paul Wellings, 'Spend it Like Beckham', 2005

THE BEST FANZINES in the mid 80’s were The End (from Liverpool, written by Pete Hooton, lead singer of The Farm, whose single ‘Altogether Now’ ...

Make my day: the best (and worst) lines in the history of film

Essay by Paul Wellings, The Independent, 20 October 2006

As in life, first impressions count in cinema. In Citizen Kane (1941), the opening word, Charles Foster Kane's dying utterance "Rosebud", holds the key (perhaps) ...

The Ultimate Top 10 Pirate Radio DJ guide to Underground Black Music clubs and Anthems

Guide by Paul Wellings, Vice, April 2021

1. The Four Aces, Dalston, London I was never one to go to those mainly white clubs that the suburban househeads went to. I was partly ...

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