Class of 88 | 1998
The Original Book
Wayne Anthony was amongst the first wave of people to experiment with a new love drug in Spain 1987. It wouldn’t be long before Wayne and a host of colourful individuals were staging the biggest illegal warehouse parties in the history of Great Britain. What began as small covert after-parties soon developed into full scale extravaganza’s as the Second Summer of Love engulfed the United Kingdom. Thousands of people are accredited for the global expansion of what today is commonly called The Rave Scene but only a few can be deemed its pioneers.
Wayne Anthony, Keith Brooks & Andrew Pritchard formed a company called Genesis’88 and quickly became leading lights during a period affectionately known as Acid House. Their modus operandi was locating huge empty warehouses and lay claim as their own building for one night only. Dozens of fake documents were concocted which enabled Wayne Anthony to convince law enforcement agencies the said properties were hired through proper channels. At times even claiming he was George Michael’s assistant manager or head of Channel 4 programming to dozens of police officers.
The UK’s media launched one of the biggest propaganda campaigns to date and demonised them as Public Enemy Number One. This brought promoters head on with police riot squads every weekend as Britain partied like never before in its history. The young Genesis’88 partners were soon earning and spending hundreds of thousands of pounds some even say millions of pounds, consuming vast amounts of drugs and even jumped out an airplane on LSD. This brought the partners to the close attention of organised criminal gangs across London. Wayne was beaten up by psychotic ex-paratroopers, stalked by crooks, held up by armed robbers and kidnapped on different occasions.
Wayne Anthony and partners spent two years breaking and entering warehouses putting life, limb and their freedom on the line. Genesis’88 co-hosted events with pioneering companies such as Sunrise, Energy or Biology. Class of 88 is one man’s raw, idiosyncratic and fascinating account of how Acid House changed his life, and Great Britain, forever. But beneath the shiny, smiley surfaces, he quickly found himself in a vicious world of violence and organised crime, for which he was totally unprepared. He was thrown into the back of a van beaten by ex-paratroopers, menaced by gangsters, kidnapped, confronted with sawn off shotguns and threatened with murder, all so Britain could party like never before.
Now, re-issued for the 30th anniversary, Class of 88 is Wayne’s very lively, highly individual account of the two years he spent as an illegal party promoter, leading the rave revolution, which was sweeping the UK, changing lives, music and popular culture forever.
Wayne Anthony is the author of Class of 88. Following Genesis, Wayne promoted a series of events around Europe and released a series of infamous compilation albums under the banner ‘Havin’ It’. Since then Wayne has been involved in Internet start-ups and tech companies. He spent the last ten years at the helm of LSD Magazine, one of Europe’s biggest street art graffiti networks.
Published by Virgin Books | 22nd March 2018 | Paperback | £8.99