Home Oral History Interview - Joy Mack

Oral History Interview - Joy Mack


Audio file

Object number


Physical Description

Audio recording of an oral history interview with Joy Mack. Joy Mack’s first ever performance was at the Four Aces club in Dalston. She went on to record
the Reggae hit You Had Your Chance (1978). Many people in Hackney connected with her musical style which included elements of Soul, Jazz and even Classical music.

Associated Organisation

The Four Aces Club (Featured)

Associated Person

Joy Mack (Subject of)


Digital file (.wav)
Digital file (.mp3)

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[Extract of Interview]

"My first show - the Four Aces was the first time I went on stage.

I was so nervous, it was nerve-wrecking because you know to stand and sing in front of all these people, and they might criticise you or throw a bottle at you and things like that, or boo you. Yeah, you know they have, people ‘boo’ you, and they say ‘Get out’. I’ve seen it happen. I’ve seen Desmond Dekker, they plugged out his mike - Desmond Dekker - at the Cube Club, so it can get that severe. But I never got booed, you know. My fans started developing then.

I was getting tunes. They’d say, ‘a little woman like you have a big voice’ and things. So I always got called to sing and get shows on, they said, ‘Listen, get yourself a band’, and that’s when I put together my band.

I was solo then. I was lucky, because at that time I didn’t have a band, I would just stand up and sing my own music. [Singing] Take the ribbon from my hair, shake it loose and let if fall. Songs like those. I just used to accompany myself musically during the tour, and I never got booed, I always got clapped and they’d say, ‘See you again, come back and sing again’, it was like that. I’d never get no money, I’d get food and drinks and so on."