Whatever happened to hank holmes?

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Whatever happened to hank holmes?

Postby Angel Gabriel » Sun Feb 20, 2005 5:57 am

I have lost track of him but he used to be a serious collector of 7" and played a lot of them on the old Reggae Beat..anyone know what he is up to now?

jah guide

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Postby mike turner » Sun Feb 20, 2005 8:04 am

Hank Holmes was the guy who really showed me the depths of this music. He used to play amazing sets of music, and I taped hours and hours of his stuff.

From what I understand he's not doing anything musically; word from a few years ago was that he was pretty much a recluse.

For those of you who never heard of Hank, he was Roger Steffens partner on the Reggae Beat radio show in L.A. in the 80s. WHile there is a Jamaican community in LA, most people knew reggae music via pop cross-over. Roger and Hank were the guys who first presented reggae in its proper context; and Hank was the first guy I ever heard who would play long sets of version sides.

The story is that in the 70s he worked for a music distributor in LA, and he began to trade music with distibutors from New York, acquiring boxes and boxes of 7" records from Jamaica. Apparently he has an amazing collection still.
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Postby Semi-Decent » Tue Feb 22, 2005 3:52 am

Yes Michael T - thank you for saying what you said about Hank Holmes!
Angel, good to hear you remember HH too...those were some good radio years...

Just like he did for you, Hank also showed me (and many others) just how deep and high the world of reggae could go! As far as reggae radio stands, I still haven't heard anyone who could string a set of music together like Hank...

Dub it up...
And yes, here in Southern California - Hank was just about the only guy who played extended versions and dubs sets LONG before anyone knew what dub was in LA.

I can still hear Hank announce on the radio, "Alright, get ready... it's Version time!" And for the next 30-40 minutes, it would be some tuff,
non-stop dubs and versions...it was a real trip. Very ahead of it's time for Los Angeles' standards...

Imo, Hank never really got the credit he deserved in LA, but I don't think that was what he was after in the first place - all he wanted to do was pick out his best records and play 'em on the radio. Less chatter and more platter as it's been said...

In 1994, KCRW stupidly took the "The Reggae Beat" off the air - even though the show consistently posted some of the station's highest fundraising numbers. I think Hank was the only dj that was there for all 15 years, Roger stopped after 8, then Chuck Foster came in for the last 7... Great show though...

Although Hank's not on the radio anymore, he's still active in some record collecting circles --- and for sure, he's never given up his love for reggae music.
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Re: Whatever happened to hank holmes?

Postby danielmak » Thu Jul 27, 2017 5:03 am

I know this is an old thread but I figured I would add a comment here. When I first got into reggae (punk > 2nd wave ska > reggae was the route for me), I preferred Roger Steffans when I listened to the Reggae Beat. I liked that he played the new stuff. But over time I started to really enjoy Hank's sets and was bummed that I often turned off the radio and did other things during Hank's sets. If anyone has digitized tapes they made of Hank's sets, I would love to hear them (as would many other people on this board I assume).
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