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Dissertation help! Looking for interviewees


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Hi there!

 

I am a student at the University of Strathclyde, and I am looking for participants to be involved in research for my dissertation about Northern Soul. I am particularly looking to speak to anyone who was involved in the scene at the time and can share some of their memories! My research is specifically looking into the parallel between working class youths from northern towns in the 1970s and black American ‘Northern Soul’ music of the 1960s. Please feel free to ask any questions, and I look forward to hearing any responses! (Please note, these interviews will be conducted remotely, through telephone or zoom – can literally be less than 10 mins of your time!)

 

Thank you.

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6 minutes ago, D9 Ktf said:

That's very good and interesting, but Northern Soul had/has people from all walks of life, not only working class. I know Doctors, Accountants, Teachers, Bank Managers etc that have been a very keen part of the Northern Soul fraternity.

Yes of course! I will be exploring this throughout my dissertation too. 

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My research is specifically looking into the parallel between working class youths from northern towns


So doesn’t include Southerners 🤔🤔 

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11 minutes ago, Zoomsoulblue said:

My research is specifically looking into the parallel between working class youths from northern towns


So doesn’t include Southerners 🤔🤔 

Yes that’s what I’m specifically looking at - however doesn’t mean I’m excluding anyone or trying to take away from the fact people travelled from all over! Happy to hear any experiences especially from Wigan Casino.

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Well 1970 would be a good starting point for a 14 to 16 year old being on the crest of a wave of "Northern Soul" as it has come to be classified as.

They would have seen its development as a seperate scene.

That's important because prior to this, what was defined as Northern soul then was previously incorporated into a general r & b scene.

Some of my friends were listening to Northern soul records 6 years before they were classified as Northern soul records.

The north had the majority of clubs made famous in Northern soul history, but I'm not sure ALL the followers were only northerners or working class.

Unfortunately I only joined the scene in 76....which in someways was the start of the demise as this original 14 to 16 year old were now getting married and leaving the ever increasing commercialised Northern soul scene.

Good luck with the project.

There is also a plethora of books written that could be of great use to you.

Ed

 

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1 hour ago, Zoomsoulblue said:

and black American ‘Northern Soul’ music of the 1960s
 

so doesn’t include White Northern Soul - music of the 1960s

It is so important not to class Black American music and White separately and NEVER call it "Northern Soul" music as it never was

"Northern Soul" is a scene not a genre of music

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1 hour ago, Blackpoolsoul said:

It is so important not to class Black American music and White separately and NEVER call it "Northern Soul" music as it never was

"Northern Soul" is a scene not a genre of music

I agree that black or white should not be differentiated against each other. It's more to do with 1960's USA culture than the colour of the writers, arrangers, producers and singers!

Now Northern Soul is as much a genre of music as Rock&Roll, Country & Western, Reggae and Folk etc. These types of categories define a style of music and Northern Soul is a style of music, as well as a scene and a fraternity!

Edited by D9 Ktf
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2 minutes ago, D9 Ktf said:

I agree that black or white should not be differentiated against each other. It's more to do with 1960's USA culture than the colour of the writers, arrangers, producers and singers!

Northern Soul is as much a genre of music as Rock&Roll, Country & Western, Reggae and Folk etc. These types of categories define a style of music and Northern Soul is a style of music!

https://underground-england.com/northern-soul-history/

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59 minutes ago, D9 Ktf said:

I agree that black or white should not be differentiated against each other. It's more to do with 1960's USA culture than the colour of the writers, arrangers, producers and singers!

Now Northern Soul is as much a genre of music as Rock&Roll, Country & Western, Reggae and Folk etc. These types of categories define a style of music and Northern Soul is a style of music, as well as a scene and a fraternity!

It's not a genre, it's a musical scene, that draws on a range of genre's, the most important being upbeat 60's soul.

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1 hour ago, Geeselad said:

It's not a genre, it's a musical scene, that draws on a range of genre's, the most important being upbeat 60's soul.

Why can Country&Western be a genre and Northern Soul can't?

When I look at a record list titled Northern Soul, even if I don't know the records, I know by the name what kind of music it will be. That's a genre to me!

The mainstream music business will not recognise Northern Soul as a genre, because people on the outside never have and never will understand it!

 

Edited by D9 Ktf
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In the early days going to Wigan, me and a few mates walked from macclesfield to Wigan just to go the casino ,who would do that now  just for a club ,got there in the early hours ,would do it again in a heartbeat .we tried to thumb it got one lift for about 4miles out of macclesfield, then walked all the way .we would do it again in a heartbeat but would take us longer obviously, that's how strong this music genre is it just has to be done .

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This is the dictionary meaning of genre,

Genre/

ˈʒɒ̃rə,ˈ(d)ʒɒnrə/

Learn to pronounce

noun

1.

a style or category of art, music, or literature.     

"the spy thriller is a very masculine genre".

Northern Soul is certainly a style and category of music!

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I really don't mean to be pedantic, but it is, actually a really important point. The term northern soul was and is imposed on certain records, regardless of genre, to a certain extent. Records that set out to be

'northern soul', are the exception, derided, in the main, and know as tailor made's.

If someone ones looking from a sociological viewpoint, it's crucial to understand context. Northern soul is British, not from the United States!

Edited by Geeselad
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23 hours ago, Chalky said:

I guess she is focusing on the struggles of the majority of us growing up, yes I know not everyone struggled but most of us were working class and we all happened to follow a genre of music whereby the vast majority of the artists struggled with so many obstacles in their way to a better life.

You should all offer your services and be interviewed if you feel so strongly about the subject or leave her to get on with it. 

Totally agree.

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16 hours ago, Chalky said:

I am with the others and disagree, it is made up of various catagories, Northern Soul is the scene IMO which encompasses various genres of music.

Genres like Rock and Roll and Country & Western are not pure music forms!

They are made up of many different fragments of regional styles and types of music! They are made up of many different genres of music, just like you describe Northern Soul to be.

If they can be respected music genres, when they are made up like Northern Soul of different styles, why can't Northern Soul be respected genre as well?

And as I mentioned earlier, the dictionary describes a genre as "a style or category of art, music or literature". Northern Soul fits both of those requirements.

Edited by D9 Ktf
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5 hours ago, D9 Ktf said:

Genres like Rock and Roll and Country & Western are not pure music forms!

They are made up of many different fragments of regional styles and types of music! They are made up of many different genres of music, just like you describe Northern Soul to be.

If they can be respected music genres, when they are made up like Northern Soul of different styles, why can't Northern Soul be respected genre as well?

And as I mentioned earlier, the dictionary describes a genre as "a style or category of art, music or literature". Northern Soul fits both of those requirement .

Whilst R&R and C&W are not pure, they take others, R&R various forms of black music as well as C&W to make Rock & Roll. C&W also took various forms of music to make the one identifiable genre.  

Whereas Northern Soul didn't take and infuse or mix genres, the genres within Northern Soul stayed separate, pop records were still pop, R&B still R&B soul still soul and so on. That's why Northern Soul is an umbrella term for one scene encompassing various forms of music.

 

 

 

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I think that a lot of the issues that are being raised in this thread are time related.

When Dave Godin coined the phrase "Northern Soul" it was his way of describing a sub genre of the UK soul scene occurring at that moment in time. I don't think he ever intended it to be used to categorise a music style.

Between 1969 and 1973 there where only a few venues in the UK that played this type of up tempo music. Once the Wheel had closed,  Blackpool Mecca, The Torch and The Catacombs' would be the only places were you could hear this type of sound. The attendees of these small exclusive venues would in the main be from northern and midland based towns. Fact is, not many locals knew or cared about what was happening musically on their doorstep. I grew up in Wigan and around 1971  there would have been no more than 20 regular Wiganers in the Highland room, with probably a similar amount from towns based geographically within a 40 mile radius. Apart from Dave Rivers I didn't know of anyone from south of Wolverhampton who was into it at all. 

By the time the Casino had become established the scene was changing rapidly and  as more and more got into it, the catchment area grew nationally, if Dave Godin had only got involved during this period I don't believe he would have ever used the term Northern Soul.

The scene today, as we all know is so diverse musically  the phrase N S is still relevant but it only describes a tiny historical segment of a much bigger story.

Good luck with the dissertation.

 

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On 08/10/2021 at 15:01, Stephen Houghton said:

In the early days going to Wigan, me and a few mates walked from macclesfield to Wigan just to go the casino ,who would do that now  just for a club ,got there in the early hours ,would do it again in a heartbeat .we tried to thumb it got one lift for about 4miles out of macclesfield, then walked all the way .we would do it again in a heartbeat but would take us longer obviously, that's how strong this music genre is it just has to be done .

There isn't a club worth walking to now.  Everything was new and exciting BITD.   Now its the same old same tired records trotted out at every venue. 

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Going back in time, I always think about how many tracks played seemed to me to be about as 'soulful' as a fatal car accident. They had a danceable rhythm, fast etc, but finito, no soul as such. Of course it was mostly white artistes, maybe all.....like that Johnny Vannelli. Always got wound up at that one....along with others. So played on the northern scene, but sure not northern soul.

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17 minutes ago, Grayman45 said:

I don't think there's any other music scene/genre that is debated about so much by it's followers 😀

Oh they are and probably just as divided

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On 07/10/2021 at 12:34, gdsoul said:

Hi there!

 

I am a student at the University of Strathclyde, and I am looking for participants to be involved in research for my dissertation about Northern Soul. I am particularly looking to speak to anyone who was involved in the scene at the time and can share some of their memories! My research is specifically looking into the parallel between working class youths from northern towns in the 1970s and black American ‘Northern Soul’ music of the 1960s. Please feel free to ask any questions, and I look forward to hearing any responses! (Please note, these interviews will be conducted remotely, through telephone or zoom – can literally be less than 10 mins of your time!)

 

Thank you.

Hi there ,

i helped another student this year , my name is Neil and was a member of the

casino club for 4 years and saw all the live acts and went to over 130 nighters 

I still have my original 45s and used to

live in Lancaster.

can do a call/zoom if you think it’s useful

 

best Neil 

 

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4 hours ago, Chalky said:

 

Whereas Northern Soul didn't take and infuse or mix genres, the genres within Northern Soul stayed separate, pop records were still pop, R&B still R&B soul still soul and so on. That's why Northern Soul is an umbrella term for one scene encompassing various forms of music.

 

 

 

There are Northern Soul titled CD's, LP's, Auctions, Sales lists, Books written about it, events promoting it for about 50 years, this site we are on and other web sites. A fanatical fan base, it's known all around the world, etc. What more can it do to be known as a genre?!

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1 hour ago, D9 Ktf said:

There are Northern Soul titled CD's, LP's, Auctions, Sales lists, Books written about it, events promoting it for about 50 years, this site we are on and other web sites. A fanatical fan base, it's known all around the world, etc. What more can it do to be known as a genre?!

Think we will agree to disagree

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2 hours ago, D9 Ktf said:

There are Northern Soul titled CD's, LP's, Auctions, Sales lists, Books written about it, events promoting it for about 50 years, this site we are on and other web sites. A fanatical fan base, it's known all around the world, etc. What more can it do to be known as a genre?!

Says Oxo on busses. 🤣

Edited by Geeselad
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Gawd

Its a way of life and it will never be over for me, even after tonight is all over because time will pass you bye and just to be clear I'm on my way....to the city.

Genre my arse.

Joking I am.

Its whatever you want to be TSWONS.

Ed

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3 hours ago, D9 Ktf said:

There are Northern Soul titled CD's, LP's, Auctions, Sales lists, Books written about it, events promoting it for about 50 years, this site we are on and other web sites. A fanatical fan base, it's known all around the world, etc. What more can it do to be known as a genre?!

It’s whatever you want it to be, but please  explain how you connect, eg, Soul Bros Inc - Pyramid, to Eddie Parker’s love you baby and describe them within the same  genre ? Surely it’s all subjective ?

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11 hours ago, Local said:

It’s whatever you want it to be, but please  explain how you connect, eg, Soul Bros Inc - Pyramid, to Eddie Parker’s love you baby and describe them within the same  genre ? Surely it’s all subjective ?

The connection is they are both within the Northern Soul genre. This is because they have been accepted, on the dance floor, by the Northern Soul fraternity.

The acceptance on the Northern Soul dance floor always has been, and should be the denominator of what is or isn't a Northern Soul record!

 

(This is just a basic view, and there are records that should be played, but haven't had the chance yet. Also there are different styles of records within Northern Soul that the DJ needs to recognise, depending on what the people want at the event.)

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15 hours ago, D9 Ktf said:

There are Northern Soul titled CD's, LP's, Auctions, Sales lists, Books written about it, events promoting it for about 50 years, this site we are on and other web sites. A fanatical fan base, it's known all around the world, etc. What more can it do to be known as a genre?!

You speak about it like its a prize. You only have to look at contemporary music to see how damaging a limiting genre can be. Musical formatting on the radio and elsewhere is a scourge that's results in little creativity. 

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1 hour ago, D9 Ktf said:

The connection is they are both within the Northern Soul genre. This is because they have been accepted, on the dance floor, by the Northern Soul fraternity.

The acceptance on the Northern Soul dance floor always has been, and should be the denominator of what is or isn't a Northern Soul record!

So by your definition  Joe 90 and Hawaii 50 , to name just two are part of Northern Soul musical genre ?

It's all subjective, the goal post are constantly changing with the passage of time.

 

 

So by your definition  Joe 90 and Hawaii 50 , to name just two are part of Northern Soul musical genre ?

It's all subjective, the goal post are constantly changing with the passage of time.

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Some people will get it - some of us were there - others will miss the point - the interpretation of NS will go being debated for years - what was / what is and what about now - one things for sure the passion love and association makes me proud to have have been a part of it from 1975 to today and hopefully for a few more years - just enjoy the journey as it will never end 👍🏻

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22 hours ago, Local said:

I think that a lot of the issues that are being raised in this thread are time related.

When Dave Godin coined the phrase "Northern Soul" it was his way of describing a sub genre of the UK soul scene occurring at that moment in time. I don't think he ever intended it to be used to categorise a music style.

Between 1969 and 1973 there where only a few venues in the UK that played this type of up tempo music. Once the Wheel had closed,  Blackpool Mecca, The Torch and The Catacombs' would be the only places were you could hear this type of sound. The attendees of these small exclusive venues would in the main be from northern and midland based towns. Fact is, not many locals knew or cared about what was happening musically on their doorstep. I grew up in Wigan and around 1971  there would have been no more than 20 regular Wiganers in the Highland room, with probably a similar amount from towns based geographically within a 40 mile radius. Apart from Dave Rivers I didn't know of anyone from south of Wolverhampton who was into it at all. 

By the time the Casino had become established the scene was changing rapidly and  as more and more got into it, the catchment area grew nationally, if Dave Godin had only got involved during this period I don't believe he would have ever used the term Northern Soul.

The scene today, as we all know is so diverse musically  the phrase N S is still relevant but it only describes a tiny historical segment of a much bigger story.

Good luck with the dissertation.

 

Much of what you say isn't actually true. When the Wheel closed the crowd split into two main factions. Some went to Leeds Metro and some to the Lantern allnighter in Market Harborough, Leics. There was and still is a thriving Rare Soul Scene in the area including Northants, Cambridge, Bedford out towards Peterborough. Bletsoe had an allnighter 71/72 there were numerous clubs such as the Howard Mallet in Cambridge. 

Post the Wheel but pre the Torch you also had places such as Saints & Sinners in Birmingham and Up The Junction at Crewe. 

 

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1 hour ago, Dim said:

Much of what you say isn't actually true. When the Wheel closed the crowd split into two main factions. Some went to Leeds Metro and some to the Lantern allnighter in Market Harborough, Leics. There was and still is a thriving Rare Soul Scene in the area including Northants, Cambridge, Bedford out towards Peterborough. Bletsoe had an allnighter 71/72 there were numerous clubs such as the Howard Mallet in Cambridge. 

Post the Wheel but pre the Torch you also had places such as Saints & Sinners in Birmingham and Up The Junction at Crewe. 

 

Blues and Soul article

"It was in a Blues & Soul column, in June 1970, that Godin made another significant cultural intervention, when he gave the name "Northern Soul" to the new soul "scene" emerging in clubs in Blackpool, Stoke and Manchester, whose fans would come into the Soul City shop at weekends looking for fast-tempo dance records"

Please to note the word "Scene"

Edited by Blackpoolsoul
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5 hours ago, D9 Ktf said:

The connection is they are both within the Northern Soul genre. This is because they have been accepted, on the dance floor, by the Northern Soul fraternity.

The acceptance on the Northern Soul dance floor always has been, and should be the denominator of what is or isn't a Northern Soul record!

 

(This is just a basic view, and there are records that should be played, but haven't had the chance yet. Also there are different styles of records within Northern Soul that the DJ needs to recognise, depending on what the people want at the event.)

But Soul Bros Inc and Eddie Parker are not Northern Soul records, well they weren’t recorded as Northern soul. They were however accepted by the Northern Soul scene, given wider prominence and rescued from failure and obscurity by the Northern Soul scene, a scene that has accepted just about every popular and not so popular musical genre going. 

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13 minutes ago, Chalky said:

But Soul Bros Inc and Eddie Parker are not Northern Soul records, well they weren’t recorded as Northern soul. They were however accepted by the Northern Soul scene, given wider prominence and rescued from failure and obscurity by the Northern Soul scene, a scene that has accepted just about every popular and not so popular musical genre going. 

I agree Karl, however, just to mix it up a bit, could this be the elusive Northern Soul "genre" record that will prove us wrong 😀, I am just getting and bucket

 

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1 minute ago, Blackpoolsoul said:

I agree Karl, however, just to mix it up a bit, could this be the elusive Northern Soul "genre" record that will prove us wrong 😀, I am just getting and bucket

 

Just a cover version done to milk the scene

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45 minutes ago, Blackpoolsoul said:

Blues and Soul article

"It was in a Blues & Soul column, in June 1970, that Godin made another significant cultural intervention, when he gave the name "Northern Soul" to the new soul "scene" emerging in clubs in Blackpool, Stoke and Manchester, whose fans would come into the Soul City shop at weekends looking for fast-tempo dance records"

Please to note the word "Scene"

Dave only really differentiated Northern Soul ('The Soul of The North' B & S column) i.e. people's different taste for Soul in the North of England from Soul due to geography. I don't believe it was anything to do with the then scene, established or not. He rarely used (if ever as far as i know) the term Northern Soul to describe anything other than a 45 that would appeal to Soul fans in the North.

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3 minutes ago, Blackpoolsoul said:

I agree Karl, however, just to mix it up a bit, could this be the elusive Northern Soul "genre" record that will prove us wrong 😀, I am just getting and bucket

 

I mentioned tailor made's earlier, usually derided. Reaching for the best some consider an exception, personally I think that's tripe too.

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On 07/10/2021 at 14:04, gdsoul said:

Yes of course! I will be exploring this throughout my dissertation too. 

What about the Midlands, it wasn't just about 'The North', far from it...

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