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Guest

Just saw the personal top-10's of deejays in Berlin getting something like a Northern Soul-scene off the ground over there.

One of them had as nr.1 - putting a foot in a grave I want to yell I DON'T BELIEVE IT! - Paul Anka. And thanks to their site I had the opportunity to listen to the start of this goodie - it turned out to contain all the right - what I would call - clichs.

It is one thing discovering the man behind "You're having my baby" and the well-known cover of Claude Fran§ois's "Comme d'habitude" (I bet it made Claude rich as well) has made a stomper.

I remain suspicious, but it is. Even Paul Anka can make one or two good records. That point I take.

But I suspect when someone puts it at nr.1 in his soul list a point is being missed. About what soul music is about, for example.

Can you really take the idea "Northern soul" out of its British context and export it? I wonder after seeing such a thing. And the question is of personal importance to me, thank you.

(The Berlin list is rather comforting, since most top-10s contained material I know - apart from that Paul Anka thing. But probably that just makes the question more pressing...)

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i think ya can 'export' northern soul successfully. that seems like a daft question to me. motown was hardly thinking their sound was too 'detroit' for anywhere else. good sounds always get around.

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Guest

Of course, the dance music can be 'exported' - it comes from the USA anyway.

But the purist idea of original 45s "for those who know" and preferably unknown - i wonder if it will have the same effect as in Britain.

About ten years ago I did a 'retro'-type night with mainly seventies disco. The record that got the floor absolutely full and moving was "I feel love" by Donna Summer.

"What is THAT?" I was being asked. Very much to my amazement. The publicc consisted mainly of people who couold have gone to discotheques in the seventies.

But I think there is hardly anything to be amazed about.

On the continent nobody will go off the floor when you play "Band of gold" by Freda Payne - you should be lucky if people knew it. (I saw this one mentioned as being a floorsweeper in Britain).

Exporting "northern soul" means having people raving about Paul Anka and Frank Wilson, it seems. They do not need to know Chris Kenner, Mary Wells, Booker T (name anyone you deem to be irrelevant).

This to me seems a variation on Eurohouse. Acting as if it is really something. Skipping to an unknowing public Freda for Frank to me seems a bad idea. Frede & Frank would be the solution. But maybe y'all disagree....

(Note, not to be read: as ever, I think Do I love you etc. was not released for a very good reason. And Band of gold was for the same good reason).

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Guest

Cloudnine , have you read the central line book about the "twisted wheel" club ?.

I think it is as good an introduction to the culture and evolution of the "Northern Soul" scene that grew in England during the 1960's. As for Soul music then i think taste is so subjective ( thank god for that), and

that if some fella in Berlin has Paul Anka in his top 10, then who the hell am i to judge his personal taste !

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Guest

I have not read that book, but have read other things. And I have noticed the effects of the northern soul scene simply as a listener to British radio. Bob & Earl, Edwin Starr and Dancing in the street becoming hits in 1969 (being about the first to lay his hands on it here in 1964 to me that was strange!), Tammi Lynn and The Tams in '71 and later Donnie Elbert and R. Dean Taylor. And later still there were Kent LP's, of which I have very little - which as far as I understand now can be seen as a good thing (sigh of relief):-)

And I let my age show, but that does not look like a problem here, another:-)

But what I ask is not about Britain. There it is a known scene with a traditon of about 35 years (imagine that!). But announcing dance nights with the word "soul" at the poster or flyer on the continent creates expectations of a different kind. At techno, trance etc. events it is perfectly normal to hear sounds you do not know. At a continental soul night at least people want to hear and dance to James Brown and Otis Redding too. Haughtily announcing that you will not honour these requests, and then stating Paul Anka as your nr.1 to me looks obscene. Especially since there are enough off-the-beaten-track tracks by Brown and Redding.

That is what I wanted to make clear - everyone is entitled to his or her own (lack of) taste.

Maybe it is not understandable to British. Anyone from the continent sharing this uncomfortable feeling?

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I do not live on the continent, but in Sweden, and I must ay that you can not judge northern (or rare soul or whatever you want to call it) in Europe by something you stumbled upon on the internet. Europe is a large place with many different countries to begin with. There are many different events run by different and unconnected people in Europe. There are events of varying quality, from the abyssmal music played at many scooter related events to quality rare soul events and everything in between, just like in the UK where you can go to some places and hear a clown play Paul Anka and Frank Wilson from CD to venues playing rare, obscure quality soul from the past off original vinyl. I have no connection whatsoever with "Paul Anka-people" in Germany, or elsewhere, and do not like to be lumped together with them. Not all crowds are unknowing over here, there are good events playing quality northern soul to appreciative audiences.

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And later still there were Kent LP's, of which I have very little - which as far as  I understand now can be seen as a good thing (sigh of relief):-)

That is what I wanted to make clear - everyone is entitled to his or her own (lack of) taste.

I don't agree with your comments about the Kent LP's.

For me they opened up a whole host of new tracks that I hadn't heard before. At the time of their release in the eighties, I was attending scooter rallies and the stuff I heard on the Kent LP's was a lot different to the sounds I usually heard at do's I attended.

I wouldn't call liking them a lack of taste though. ;-)

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Guest

No, I have no objection against Kent LP's. Biggest problem about them is that I tend to forget what is on them.

And Christian, I have no intention to be offensive to anyone on the continent (or in Britain). If there is a genuine northern soul scene in Sweden, that is fine. You are northern by definition anyway:-)

But I have been active in organising scooter related events, as you call them. And I am not ashamed of that, and cannot remember any complaint about what the public wanted. No objection against Kent LP's. Sometimes the question "Haven't you got anything really swinging?" when the floor could not be more packed than it was...

Calling people playing Frank Wilson from cd clowns spells that we should be relieved from playing F. Wilson altogether! That is a relief indeed. With only two or three genuine issues of that great song about we should be rid of hearing it virtually anywhere. But I presume we are allowed to play the Chris Clark version, since that is on cd only...

Paul "Las Vegas" Anka unfortunately is not that rare on vinyl, but I shall refrain from any active searching for it, promise!

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PAUL ANKA-I CAN'T HELP LOVING YOU-ONE OF THE BEST NORTHERN RECORDS-CERTAINLY PLAYED AT WIGAN. COVERED UP AS JOHNNY CASWELL ME THINKS.

WHAT A START. 'WHEN WE GET THERE' AINT BAD EITHER.

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But what I ask is not about Britain. There it is a known scene with a traditon of about 35 years (imagine that!). But announcing dance nights with the word "soul" at the poster or flyer on the continent creates expectations of a different kind. At techno, trance etc. events it is perfectly normal to hear sounds you do not know. At a continental soul night at least people want to hear and dance to James Brown and Otis Redding too. Haughtily announcing that you will not honour these requests, and then stating Paul Anka as your nr.1 to me looks obscene. Especially since there are enough off-the-beaten-track tracks by Brown and Redding.

That is what I wanted to make clear - everyone is entitled to his or her own (lack of) taste.

Maybe it is not understandable to British. Anyone from the continent sharing this uncomfortable feeling?

dunno where you're going with this thread,

give us a link to the site where got your "view" of rare soul from

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Guest

Cloudnine, just out of interest have you attended any "Northern" Soul nights/nighters in England ?. If so where, and what did you think of them.

Yours Brett

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Guest

Cloudnine, i can't help feeling that you are being quite disrespectful to the " Northern Soul" scene,( this includes your earlier posts) no one in this Isle of ours claims to have discovered the music, all they did really (and have continued to do) was to champion a sound that the rest of the musical world seemed happy to disregard and throw in the trash can. The "Northern" world has always had it's idosyncrasies , eg "peanut duck" or as your earlier post decried "Paul Anka", for better or worse certain tunes have always been intrinsical in the culture that "Was" and still is a rare soul UK movement. I find in particular your disparaging remarks to "Kent" LP releases pretty hard to stomach, some of the tracks that have been released via this "Bloody Good" label have been at the back bone of a movement that "I" for one have been glad to be a part of for over 24 years. So please Mr/Mrs/Miss Cloudnine do not look down your nose at a UK soul scene that has done more to empower the obscure soul music of black America than any other nation on this earth.

yours Brett Franklin

ps if you would like to attend an event near my neck of the woods, then i would gladly give you free accomadation and a breakfast........there are never any hard feelings in this world of mine.

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ps if you would like to attend an event near my neck of the woods, then i would gladly give you free accomadation and a breakfast........there are never any hard feelings in this world of mine.

Does this apply to anyone? ;-)

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Guest

Is there a language problem? Well, at least a problem with levels of communication I fear.

I wrote that I have very few Kent LP's. Since I understand that you are not supposed to spin them as a deejay I jokingly wrote that then this could be considered an asset. This does not mean I have anything against Kent Records, quite the contrary. And I never noticed anyone protesting when numbers from this great collection were spun at the "scooter related" nights I mentioned before.

If I had any grudges against the scene, why would I bother? I think I have payed my dues as far as my admiration for the British work for Afro-American music is concerned. Still paying my dues. No pun intended, but it works out nicely.

What I wanted to make a point of discussion - and it does not look like succeeding: can you "export" the northern soul expeerience without having a local tradition. A site with personal top-10's and severe mentioning of "things we will not play although they keep asking for it".

Once more: I am shocked about a so-called northern soul scene where people have Paul Anka at nr.1 and show contempt for Otis Redding and James Brown at the same time. Must I be more explicit?

Well, let me look up the url's and maybe we can decide whether it is a standard continental problem or an idiosyncracy to Berlin. (At least they bother to question the lack of female participation).

We shall consider the offer, Brett. We, the mrs. and the one who is writing this now:-)

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Kay

* Paul Anka: I can't help loving you

* Marsha Gee: Peanut Duck

* Bobby Hebb: Sunny

* Eddie Holman: Eddie's my name

* The Shirelles: Too much of a good thing

* Jerry Nailor: City lights

* James Coit: Black Power

* Candy & the Kisses: The 81

* Chairmen Of  The Board: Pay to the piper

* Jimmy Radcliffe: Long after tonight it's all over

Hannes Rosenhagen:

* Betty Lavette: What condition my condition was in

* Linda Martell and the Angelos: The things I do for you

* Moses Smith: Girl across the street

* The Cooperettes: Shing-A-Ling

* Marva Holiday: It's written all over my face

* Chris Clark: Love's gone bad

* Bobby Lynn: Earthquake

* Bobby Lynn: Opportunity Street

* Bessie Jones: No more tears

* Shalimars: Stop and take a look at yourself

* Lucille Mathis: I'm not your regular woman

Worst wishes to the DJ or things we won't play

* Elvis

* James Brown

* Reggae

* Patta Patta

* Respect - Aretha Franklin

* Couldn't you play a) something more soulish or cool.gif some real Soul? (both questions after I've played Northern Soul for one hour)

* Country

* Nirvana

* Eric Burton

* Jimmy Hendrix

* Desmond Decker

* Ska

* Deep Purple

* Soulman - Sam & Dave

* Otis Redding

* Bobby Brown

* something from Saturday Night Fever ..

* something from Pulp Fiction

* Michael Jackson

* something faster (while playing an uptempo track

* Sonics

* Abba

* Beatles

* Rolling Stones

http://www.raresoul.de/info.htm

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Guest

Well, there we go then! Maybe I should contact diesen Berlinern personally. It looks like they have read the right books and articles and then started. I fear.

Looking over these two arrested top-10s I conclude there are some good sounds mentioned which however wil not fill any dance floor. Particularly Betty Lavette with her cover of Kenny Rogers' shot at psychedelics. Good, as ever with Betty L. But northern soul? I notice they refuse to play country. "My condition" remains a country song, whoever sings it. Bobby Hebb was even

a regular at the Grand Ole Opry!

Having pasted here what got me worried somehow works a bit comforting. Perhaps I took it too seriously. But I think the rare soul brigade from Berlin wants to be taken seriously!

(I don't know if I want to be taken seriously, at least not here).

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Guest

To this I can only use an Amsterdams yiddish phrase: gein! I have been promoted to being an andvanced meber simply by asking questions noone understands...

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Mick Smith

Agree 100% with you regarding Paul Anka. Isn't it ironic that one of the most perfect, well crafted Northern Soul stompers of all time was made by a Paul Anka?

With a stack of notable Footsee-like exceptions, the Northern Soul Scene always had a high regard for well made pop records that fitted the bill. And although black American vocals will always be my first love, songs like the one mentioned still give me a tingle. After all, chances are the backing musicians were the same guys that featured on tons of soul classics!

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Dayo i agree on your opinion here, i won't COMPARE "real soul" with stuff like Paul Anka, Frankie Valli (i'm gonna change mostly) e.tc. but still, it's quality dance music in the same vein as "real soul" and i think as long it moves me it's good although i maybe wouldn't buy the 45s (only cheap ;-) or such..

best

Leo

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Guest

That is a beautiful picture of the man - it is him, isn't he?

But you have lost the thread as everybody else, including myself now - I think: I was completely amazed about people having Paul Anka or a Kenny Rogers song as their northern soul #1's refusing to play James Brown. I don't refuse to play James B. And the First Edition - well, you could use it as a floorsweeper. Having them in the cushions and lighting up a reefer.

It is about exporting the concept (gulp) of northern soul outside Britain (and maybe Ireland).

Do we really care? I think not. A telling remark.

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Has JB released a 'northern soul' track then?

I am not what you would call a fan, so i dont know. I like his stuff to a certain extent, but havent heard anything that I thought might fit in down the local soul night.

Love his lyric.

its a mans world, but it would be nothing, without a woman to do the cooking, and ironing.

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Has JB released a 'northern soul' track then?

I am not what you would call a fan, so i dont know. I like his stuff to a certain extent, but havent heard anything that I thought might fit in down the local soul night.

Love his lyric.

its a mans world, but it would be nothing, without a woman to do the cooking, and ironing.

What is a "northern soul" track?

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Has JB released a 'northern soul' track then?

I am not what you would call a fan, so i dont know. I like his stuff to a certain extent, but havent heard anything that I thought might fit in down the local soul night.

Love his lyric.

its a mans world, but it would be nothing, without a woman to do the cooking, and ironing.

I like "there was a time" but his ballads are his best outings and i really like "people wake up and live" (polydor) but that's more modern.

But i like the Brownettes "never find a love like mine" (King) and that was (although he didn't sing on it) his work, beat ballad heaven..

best

Leo

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What is a "northern soul" track?

James you like your trouble dont you? Is that how you got your name.

A northern soul track has a black fist logo and is played on KFC adverts. I know this because, a couple of weeks ago, the guy I crocked playing football told me this in the bar afterwards.

I would describe it as 'rare sixties soul and possibly some 70s, but only if I like it'.

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Has JB released a 'northern soul' track then?

I have no idea... but I'll definitely be playing his "Shhhhhhh (For A Little While)" the next time I DJ at a northern venue. Fantastic tune with James shouting short phrases all over it and what sounds like him kicking the shit out of the Hammond B3 organ... A manic stomper.

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So a new recording couldn't be "northern soul"?

Only if I like it.

If you want a straight answer. Its all down to semantics (spelling?). One man's Northern Soul, might not necessarily compare to anothers. I dont particularly like 'latin', but loads of people do. We could get embroiled in the age old debate about what is and isnt rare soul. If so how could a record with an approx value of $5 and be owned by everyman and his dog be NS. But the fact remains there are many examples of such records.

I can see how a tune released this week might tick some boxes, and could then be labelled NS. But it might not tick all, if you get my drift.

I remember a song in the charts in the early 80s I think called Heartache Avenue. By some midlands band I think. i had the feel of a 60s floorpacker, but had national relaease and made the hit parade. That ticked some boxes too, but not others. I also remember Funky Town getting a spin at Yate, on acetate, before actually being released. That would then have ticked some boxes, but IMHO it was that bl@@dy awful modern cr@p!

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Does it have to have a four to the floor beat?

You're not helping me much Mickey. Can someone else advise me, I'm young, and don't know much.sleep.gif

JT it HAS to be on the motortown label and must've been produced/written by Ian levine othervise it can't be northern, then it's more likely to be popcorn or beach or Rock n Roll.. sorry RnB..

best

Leo

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JT it HAS to be on the motortown label and must've been produced/written by Ian levine othervise it can't be northern, then it's more likely to be popcorn or beach or Rock n Roll.. sorry RnB..

best

Leo

RnB... Why is that played at "northern soul" venues, but rare soulfull funk is not?

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It does tick the following boxes,

Rare, 60s, american, played on the scene, liked by many, played (if I'm not mistaken) by your mate Keb at Stafford.

BUT is also ticks the very important, not to be underestimated box:

utter uuter#### that I totally loath.

Therefore it falls down at the final hurdle. But then my impression might be different to yours. Neither of us is more or less right. its just the Strange World of Northern Soul. Someone should copyright that ;-)

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RnB... Why is that played at "northern soul" venues, but rare soulfull funk is not?

Maybe because Northern Soul is a progression in one direction from traditional RnB, whereas Funk is another progression in a different direction. They may have a similar starting point, black, 50s, american kids, but are quite different.

Its my belief that the tune plays a more integral part to a funk track, whereas a soul track relies more on the vocal. That is an obvious generalisation, and I know you could name many tracks to prove me wrong James. But I'm not a massive fan of RnB either.

In fact I'm not really a fan of anything I dont like. And what I do, tends to be welcome under my 'northern soul umbrella'.

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It does tick the following boxes,

Rare, 60s, american, played on the scene, liked by many, played (if I'm not mistaken) by your mate Keb at Stafford.

BUT is also ticks the very important, not to be underestimated box:

utter uuter#### that I totally loath.

Therefore it falls down at the final hurdle. But then my impression might be different to yours. Neither of us is more or less right. its just the Strange World of Northern Soul. Someone should copyright that  ;-)

So what about if had just been recorded last month, by an English band, liked by many (including yourself) and spun by Butch at the 100 club?

Could that not be "northern soul"?

Why does it have to be made in the 60s?

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Mikey said: "Its my belief that the tune plays a more integral part to a funk track, whereas a soul track relies more on the vocal."

So does it help for a record to be tuneless, if you want to call it "northern soul"?

And what about instrumentals on the "northern soul" scene. They don't have a vocal.

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But Sven Zetterberg is spun now and made last year, still considered a ns record i guess.. a blue eyed, swedish, contemporary ns record.

Ree Flores is neither northern nor funk it's a small piece of heaven fallen down from the sky that looks and sounds like it was a record, pure coincidence.

best

Leo

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Ree Flores is neither northern nor funk it's a small piece of heaven fallen down from the sky that looks and sounds like it was a record, pure coincidence.

Ahhhhh. Now we are getting somewhere. But many "northern soul" records do not live up to this high standard. And certainly some of them are quite the antithisis.

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Ree Flores has a great 60 feel to it. It reminds me of 'there was a time' by Gene Chandler. Its is a Stafford tune therefore slightly superior to all other tracks first played at other venues ;-)

""So what about if had just been recorded last month, by an English band, liked by many (including yourself) and spun by Butch at the 100 club?""

Thats a toughie, but if I like it then OK its in. But then I absolutely love 'Debaser' by the Pixies, and 'Freak Scene' by Dinosaur Jr. Dont think they are NS tho.

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Ree Flores has a great 60 feel to it. It reminds me of 'there was a time' by Gene Chandler.

But "There Was A Time" is a James Brown record. So we are right back were we started.

I'm not learning much here.geek.gif

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Mikey said: "Its my belief that the tune plays a more integral part to a funk track, whereas a soul track relies more on the vocal."

So does it help for a record to be tuneless, if you want to call it "northern soul"?

And what about instrumentals on the "northern soul" scene. They don't have a vocal.

PMSL.

only if its peanut duck!

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Getting slightly back on track.

When does a newie become an oldie??

And isnt there a market for a 60s newies, oldies night. And there definetly has to be a market for a modern oldies night. Things like: the Pages, Larry Houston, J Blackfoot, Marlena Shaw, Cheryl Berdell, etc

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Guest

Now we are talking business. Glad to have started it after all:-)

That Midlands band, The Maisonettes - they tried and succeeded. Like the Joboxers. The Jam. The Boo Radleys. Human League (Mirror man). Billy Bragg (Upfield). Topper Headon maybe. Vanessa Paradis definitely.

But they were all TOTP material. Anything I missed from the past 25 years?

For those who want to have a look at where this thread started I can advise

http://www.geocities.com/transkul/offtheground.htm

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