Don Letts’ reputation has been firmly established in both the film and music world by a substantial body of work from the late 70’s through the 80’s, 90’s and well into the millennium. His work has been exhibited in The Kitchen N.Y.C, The Institute of Contemporary Art, The N.F.T in London and was honored at Brooklyn’s BAM festival and The Milan Film festival. In March 2003 he won a Grammy for his documentary ‘Westway To The World’.
He came to notoriety in the late 70’s as the DJ that single handedly turned a whole generation of punks onto reggae. It was whilst as a d.j at the first punk club ‘The Roxy’ in 1977, that Don adopted the punk D.I.Y ethic and begun to make his first film ‘The Punk Rock Movie’. Shot on Super-8mm it is the only documentary on the U.K punk scene w/ Sex Pistols-The Clash and many others. This led to a period directing over 300 music videos for an eclectic mix of diverse artists ranging from Public Image to Bob Marley. He then moved into documentary work covering the likes of Gil Scot-Heron, The Jam, Sun Ra, George Clinton and most recently Paul McCartney. Dancehall Queen (co-directedby Rick Elgood) shot in location in Jamaica 1997 was his first feature film.
Don continues to D.J nationally and internationally playing strictly old and new school dub reggae. His set is in the spirit of his time as DJ at London’s legendary Roxy club back in ’77.
From the days of Punk Rock to present day Don has always been drawn towards musical projects. After d.j’ing at the Roxy and whilst directing videos for many other acts he created the band Basement Five, released a single with members of John Lydon’s P.I.L, managed the Slits and collaborated with members of Trouble Funk. He recently recorded a reggae version of the London Calling!
In the mid 80’s he formed the group ‘Big Audio Dynamite’ with Mick Jones (ex-Clash). He went on to perform and co-write four albums with B.A.D achieving several hits on both sides of the Atlantic including the top ten hit E=Mc2. The band recently reformed for a world tour to sell out shows and critical acclaim.
In the early nineties Don left B.A.D to form ‘Screaming Target’ their debut performance at The Transmusical Festival in France received rave reviews. They released one critically acclaimed album ‘Hometown Hi-Fi’’
Don d.j’s nationally and internationally, sets include Glastonbury – Bestival – Lovebox – The Big Chill – Stussy 25th Anniversary – Adidas –- Doctor Martins – Latitude – The Rough Trade 25th Anniversary – Lee Perry’s Meltdown –Rizzla -Island Records 50th anniversary – Massive Attack’s Meltdown – Vintage At Goodwood – Womad and Festival No.6 to name a few. He was recently asked to d.j for both Arcade Fire’s soid out London gigs at The Roundhouse.