Froggy, a.k.a. Steve Howlett, was a true master of the turntables, one of Britain’s most influential DJs, transforming the shape of UK club music by being the first to use the art of live mixing into the nation’s night spots…

Dubbed ‘Froggy’ because of his tendency to jump up and down in time to the music he played, by the early 1970s he had his first residency at the Essex club The Bird’s Nest.

Froggy was then behind the creation of the pioneering mobile disco The Rosko International Roadshow for the Emperor Rosko and subsequently on other Radio 1 roadshows.

He played at the inaugural Caister Soul Weekender alongside fellow DJs Greg Edwards, Chris Hill, Robbie Vincent and Jeff Young, and with the subsequent addition of Pete Tong, this loosely affiliated group became known as The Soul Mafia. Regular visits to NYC in the latter part of the 1970’s and a close study of mixing tracks by such icons as Larry Levan at The Paradise Garage, put him ahead of the game back home. This in turn meant he became part of the new wave of DJ’s that would eventually change the UK clubbing culture.

In the early 1980’s, Froggy rose to mainstream prominence with his own Radio 1 show duties and in 1985, he made the UK national charts with a James Brown Megamix and a then year later with a remix of The Real Thing‘s ‘You To Me Are Everything’.

Some 20 years later, both he and his legendary sound-system graced the fields of Barnet at the inaugeral Summer Soulstice 2007 and helped put smiles on the hundreds of faces looking up at the man that day. We are extremely honoured to have had Froggy be a part of our humble beginnings.

Like everyone else who knew him, we were shocked to hear of his sudden death in 2008 at just 58 years old. Not only did he leave his own loved ones behind, including his son Mark who carries on the family DJ’ing tradition under the guise of DJ Tadpole, but he also left a very large extended soul family as well.

Rest in musical bliss maestro.

Obituary in The Guardian

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