A word from Neil Rushton on the upcoming 3rd Annual Reunion this Saturday July 12th featuring a Catacombs line up which includes Graham Warr.
This Saturday is 34 years to the day since The Catacombs closed and it will also be Graham Warr's birthday on the Sunday and as at the Catcombs final night his birthday started at midnight. Now that's what you call a co-incidence.
It’s perhaps because unlike so many other DJ’s he is not an ego tripping maniac, but Graham Warr never gets the recognition he deserves as a genius discover of great record after great record at The Catacombs in Wolverhampton in the early seventies.
We’ve managed to coax him out of DJ retirement to appear at the 3rd annual Catacombs DJ’s annual get-together this Saturday July 12 at Soulvation @ Lea Hall Club, Rugeley and he has agreed for the first time ever anywhere to a DJ set made up 100% of 45’s he discovered on pioneering record buying trips to the USA and brought back to Wolverhampton, giving them their first UK spins at The Catacombs, helping to make it “the greatest little Soul club in the land”. Saturday night is actually the 34th anniversary of the Catacombs closing to the day.
A quick glance at just some of the records he found for the Northern scene is astonishing
“I’m Not Built That Way” – The Hesitations, “Let Her Go” – Otis Smith, “Psychedelic Soul” – Saxie Russell
“Too Much “ – Jimmy Connwell, “Grooving At The Go Go” – The Four Larks, “I’m Gonna Change” – The Velours
“I’ve Got Something Good” – Sam & Kitty, “You Don’t Love Me Anymore” – Johhny Caswell, “If You Ever Walk Out Of My Life”
Dena Barnes, “Angel Baby” – George Carrow, “Blowing My Mind To Pieces” _- Bob Relf, “You Don’t Love Me” – Epitome Of Sound
“Wait Till I Get To Know Ya” – Bobby Treetop, “Crackin’ Up Over You” – Roy Hamilton, “Honest To Goodness” – Herb Ward
“There’s That Mountain” – The Trips, “Countdown” – The Tempos, “I Worship You baby” – The Glories
”Change Your Ways” – Willie Kendricks, “I Got To Find Me Somebody” – The Vel-Vets.
And that’s just some of them!
The Cats had its own unique atmosphere anyway but even though it’s now a long time ago, I can still remember the extra electric like excitement that sparked through the club when Graham put The Trips and George Carrow on the decks for the first time. It was unbelievable.
Graham was already drifting away from the Rare Soul scene by the time The Cats closed and didn’t bother trying to DJ here, there and everywhere, and I reckon that’s why he is so under-rated. He moved on to contemporary music and became an absolute icon as a jazz funk DJ.
Anyway, he has agreed to do this unque set on on Saturday night so if you want to pay tribute to a legend please make the effort. Other Catacombs DJ’s who will be supplying their Temple Street memories are Blue Max, Carl Dene, Oscar Michael, Bill Baker and myself.
The night starts at 8pm, finishes at 1am and if it is anything like the past 2 years events that very special Catacombs atmosphere will be recreated from early on. Admission is £6 pay on the door. Info on www.soulvation.biz.
Please note the event is nothing to with the owners of The Catacombs trademark! NEIL RUSHTON
Note photo featured on banner and the flyer was taken at The Catacombs and is a young Graham Warr plus Cats regulars including Dave and Barry