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Learning English
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Katrina Leskanich

Rhythmic, funky, energetic and easy to dance to are just some of the unmistakable characteristics of UK Garage. But what was it that made Garage all these things? Where exactly did it come from? And why is it so important to distinguish between 'Garage' and 'UK Garage'?

Find out here with the help of our expert guest, some fans and Katrina Leskanich, best known as the front person of the Eurovision Song Contest winning act Katrina and The Waves.

Listen to Katrina and three fans of UK Garage to find out what words and expressions people use to describe the genre. Then check below to see if you got the meanings right.
funky: a word many young people would use to describe something they really like
bassy: it has a low rhythmic beat to it
underground: non-mainstream
soulful: it has a strong influence from another music style, 'soul'
danceable: very easy and enjoyable to dance to
moody: atmospheric, or temperamental
energetic: it fills you with enthusiasm and makes you dance
Deborah, a UK Garage fan
Listen to some fans say these words, as an extract from the song 'Flowers' by Sweet Female Attitude is playing.
Listen to Simon Barnett, a former DJ and now a BBC music producer who works on the World Service's No. 1 pop music programme 'The Edge'. As you listen, try and answer these questions: What do the fans look like? Where does UK Garage come from? Why is it important to distinguish between 'Garage' and 'UK Garage'?
What do the fans look like?
The audience dress for success. They're really glamorous, smartly dressed, the guys. The latest look: designer trousers, shirts. The girls dressed up really glamorously as well. It's looking sharp at these clubs - that's really the essence of it.
Where does UK Garage come from?
It comes from soul music, there's influence from drum and bass music, there's influence from house music as well. It's come up from underground clubs, mainly in urban areas of the UK, and it kind of kicked off in London. And it's moved from there across the country and on to mainstream radio in the UK through being played a lot on pirate radio stations in big urban areas like Birmingham, Manchester and London.
Why is it important to distinguish between 'Garage' and 'UK Garage'?
There have been other forms of music called 'Garage' before. The original form of Garage music started in the 60's in the United States of America. And it was called Garage music because it was kids playing in bands in their parents' garages. And that's where that term came from. And then it became more closely associated with dance music in the United States in the 1970's and 1980's. And then again, now there's been this big resurgence in the use of the word 'Garage', and to differentiate it from previous forms of Garage music it was being called UK Garage because it was born, bred and it's developing in the UK.
Simon Barnett
Colin Babb talks to UK Garage fans in the club 'Garage City' in Central London.
'This is me, Colin Babb. I'm outside a club called 'Garage City' which in Central London is the place for young people to come and listen to UK Garage and Garage music. There's a lot going on inside the club, there's a lot of dancing and lots of people enjoying themselves and I'm gonna speak to a few people here and find out what they think about Garage.' Colin Babb
As you listen to Colin's interviewees, see if you can spot the key words and expressions people use to talk about UK Garage
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