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  • A brief intro...
    Rock (aged 10), Soul, Funk, Northern (aged 12), New York Disco, Jazz Funk, Jazz, Reggae, Deep, Southern, Jazz Rock, Blues, Zappa, Beefheart, Tom Waites, Hendrix, Santana, C20th Classical. World, (some) Hip Hop.  With Alex Lowes and Searling, transformed Jazz Funk model of weekender to Soul Room model at Berwick, Fleetwood, Morecambe and Southport. Sam Dees asked for me by name when he arrived at Fleetwood for his first ever British date. Dramatic Ron Banks told me I have a good ear after I recognized Wee Gee on a recent comeback record (long since forgotten). Invented the term Deep and Sweet which seems to have become Sweet and Deep.

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  • Public Real Name
    Seedy Steve Tulip
  • Gender
  • Location
    North East
  • Top Soul Sound
    Impressions, People get ready

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  1. Having read more of the blog, I get that the objection to covering the early Upnorth Weekenders was because they barely featured northern soul at all. However, I realised almost in hindsight that many thought they were about modern soul as an offshoot of northern, and based on the Mecca and the seventies records played at nighters in the eighties; a view I didn't and don't share. It was more about people, often with a background in northern soul, jazz-funk or club music - and I'd done all three - but had been listening to 'real soul' at home for years. I disentangled myself from them in 91 which is the year Kev Roberts reckons kick-started the northern revival and I would argue they led directly to Cleethorpes, Prestatyn and weekenders throughout the land which have become the new temples of northern soul. We'd had to move from Fleetwood because the soul room was far too small, and I recall thinking we should have swapped the two rooms, though I don't remember if I ever suggested it to Alex. He would have never gone for it because he always wanted it to be like Caister, Bognor and the original Prestatyn's, but with a small soul room stuck on, not least because he wanted them to be all about him and knew the soul room was more about me, in the same way the jazz room was more about Simon Mansell. The Upnorth Weekenders did not lead to the northern soul revival - indeed they should have prevented it - and the northern weekenders would have happened anyway, but at a different time and in different ways.
  2. Nobody does their cause any favours by claiming the artists miraculously recieve money when vinyls are exchanged between dealers and collectors. There isn't a serious singer, musician or producer on the planet who thinks CDs are in any way less valid, authentic or worthy than vinyls were in their day. On the contrary, they want you to buy their CDs and go and watch them live as the only chances they have of ever getting paid. Once they've gone, - and most of them already have - they want your kids to stream it and your descendants to implant it directly into their brains so they can listen with perfect sound quality just by thinking about it. They don't want this music - an artform, in its own way comparable to classical music and jazz - to become nothing more than insipid nostalgia for a few people, most of whom weren't even there. The people who made the decision it has to be vinyls have a vested interest in maintaining them, because they have lots of them and probably make money from them, just like the bootleggers did. Collecting vinyls, or any memorabilia, is a perfectly good hobby, but the vinyls community - still miniscule, despite mammoth campaigns over several years by the record companies and the media - is not about being a music fan, so nobody who would rather play or listen to rubbish on vinyls than the best music in existence on any other format should not mistake themselves for soul fans.
  3. Not part of the scene, but in my 45 going on 46 years as a soul fan, the chasm between Soul Music and the soul scene has never been so vast, which I'm sure is not the intention of the nice people at Soul Source. The order is very, very rough and reflects a mixed clientele including a gang of drunk local gals who just wanted to sing karaoke: Latimore - Dig a Little Deeper (2017) OV Wright - Let's Straighten it Out Eddie Hinton - I'll Come Running Emotions - So I can love you John Edwards - Tin Man Jackey Beavers - Trying to get back Dells - It's all up to you Garland Green - Ain't that Good Enough Melvin Moore - All of a Sudden Margie Joseph - Let's Stay Together Teddy Pendergrass (featured artist) - Love TKO, Be Sure, Is it still good to ya Harold Melvin - You know how to make me feel, Wake up Everybody Johnnie Taylor - What About my Love Chimes - Still Trying to Find Swing Out Sister - Am I the Same Girl, Love Won't let you Down Womack - If you think you're lonely now, How could you break my heart, So Many Sides (request) Beloyd, Flowers, Gloria Scott Jesse James - If You Want a Love Affair (request) Darrell Banks - Only the Strong Survive Gabor Szabo - Breezin George Benson - Affirmation Donald Byrd - Just my Imagination, Dominoes (live) James Brown - There was a Time (Apollo 2) Eloise Laws - Love Factory Willie Hutch - The Way we Were Keith Barrow - You Know you Want to be Loved Spinners - Ghetto Child Bataan - The Bottle Aretha - Oh No Not my Baby Al Johnson feat Jean Carn(e) - Back for More Isleys - Here we go Again William Bell and Mavis Staples - Leave the Girl Alone Barbara Lynne - Trying to love Two Ashford and Simpson - Top of the Stairs Temptations - Ball of Confusion Four Tops - Keeper of the Castle Marvin - Where are we Going, God is Love, Mercy Mercy Me William Devaughn - Be Thankful (original version) Maze - The Look in your Eyes (live) Young Holt Unlimited - California Montage Millie Jackson - House for Sale, Summer
  4. I never know why people get so troubled by the term Modern Soul. Modern Classical Music began at the end of C19th and ended around the middle of C20th and Modern Jazz started in the forties and ended at the end of the sixties. Some people say Modern Soul is everything since about 1970 but any sensible definition would have the word seventies in there but may also include some late sixties, the eighties and early nineties, but really shouldn't include C21st neo/nu soul. Crossover is jazz-funk; the term was grabbed years ago and in a soul context is entirely meaningless and no two people agree on a definition anyway.
  5. Re the Ritson book, there are claims that Snowboy's book on the acid jazz/ funk/ dance scene was a kind of sequel, but that's only half the story, and not the side you're concentrating on, though there's definite overlaps.
  6. At Berwick, the soul rm wasn't open long and I doubt there was any northern played; I cerainly never heard any. The funk mob had Prestatyn years before Searling et al. I think it would be 88 when I went. The rm which became the northern rm played house (or whatever tag it had in 88). Chris Hill raised a banner in another rm saying Acid Free Zone and played one of the best sets I've ever heard. He looked thoroughly p!$$ed off.
  7. I'm surprised the first real soul weekenders didn't get more than a single mention of Southport. Stuart Cosgrave described them as northern soul although they were never that, beyond Mr Searling doing an hour in the jazz room on a saturday afternoon. How times have changed. These weekenders were critical as a stepping stone from Caister, Bognor and the original Prestatyn Weekenders and were responsible for launching all the weekenders that followed. I'm assured many still claim Fleetwood in particular was the greatest soul room ever, and Sam Dees' performace, even for a PA. was utterly extraordinary. Myself, Searling and others gradually drifted away and Mr Lowes eventually got the weekender he always wanted, but for a time it seemed that anything was possible.
  8. The CD sections are being neglected because of the so-called vinyls revival, which was something of a damp squib last year, though the record companies, backed by the media, are seriously stepping up their campaign this year. Somebody said to me recently, we won you lost. I thought he was a fanatical brexiteer and, as with brexit, we've all lost.
  9. Don't you just love lazy afternoons at work where you can just youtube choons. Been through the Hayley list and, while there's nothing I'd have sold a granny for (and my grannies came cheap) there's nothing terrible either. Would have appreciated them more in the mid-seventies when I was always on the lookout for stuff nobody was playing. Some great singing, especially Gilford and Scruggs, Delphs, Mancha and of course JJ. I'll no doubt have to buy all the albums on payday.
  10. I'm a Soul Fan (actually a Black Music fan verging on Music Fan), not a (northern) soul on vinyls fan. I buy a couple of dozen albums a month and discovered years ago that the Amazon basket (the worst company in the world but in a monopoly situation) will only hold 600 items, though I could always cheat it a bit. I've recently found out I can only cheat it by another 50 items meaning I have about 200 items on hand-written sheets. I'm not desperate for new stuff to arrive.
  11. Great to hear Curtis still adding guitar at this stage.
  12. Hi again again. I try to avoid Soul Source (too many Beatlemaniacs and punkrockers) so have just come across this. I'll (persuade the missus to let me) order part 2; to be honest I've been getting frustrated without it, but there's always music to buy which has to come first, though books can enhance music enormously. I've started putting a Soul Album on my facebook page (Christine Tulip) each day and you get the odd mention. A little slippage in Funk - perhaps the age difference - but I'd say 68-78 though I acknowledge a decline after 75. Despite maybe half a dozen essential tracks I think many of the bands who followed on from Sly improved on them. I'd have had Wild and Peaceful, All n All, 3+3 and some P at least in my top 100. 'Serious' Soul types always seem to struggle with P Funk, particularly poor old Bootsy; like Zappa, I believe it will have time on its side. Although I seldom listen to her these days, I think Anita's first 2 albums disprove any theory that the Soul Album disappeared once CD's outsold vinyls. As a singer I think she ranks with Aretha, Linda Jones, Betty Wright, Minnie Ripperton and Jean Carn(e), but I think the age slippage is in play here. Certainly I know many (and some would have been at Bilbao) who think she was a very big deal. For me, although I don't care much for Roy Ayers beyond odd ones, should have been there because, unlike say Herbie Hancock and Donald Byrd, he was never a big deal in 'Real Jazz'. However, I struggle with the omission of DB so perhaps I think vocals are an issue here. I certainly think Benson should have featured because he really stopped being a Jazz Artist at all and vocally was in the scope of Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway, though - beyond his incredible Jazz Guitar playing, I don't care much for any of his music. Overall I think the Jazz-Funk issue was a minefield no two people would ever agree on, but debate in itself is good. Hopefully see you in Bilbao next year. Steven.
  13. My list has probably changed since the last post which had probably changed since the first post; note my comments on Sam Dees. You are in a privileged position of being able to put out a book and the nice people at Soul source allows us to put in our two penneth. Anything of this nature is only a starting point for an exchange of ideas, discussion and discourse and I'm always pleased to add a few more to my ever growing wants list (though Mrs Silk definitely isn't). Haven't seen the original VFTS for years which seems to be in a loft. I wonder if you have a copy of the list you could send me when I order vol 2. I know there were at least a couple on it I hadn't heard, and of course nowadays you can get virtually everything. It would be fascinating to see how your choice has changed over the years. Forgive me but it's also worth noting you're obviously a few years older than me, and that slippage goes a long way to explain many of our differences. However, this also highlights one major difference we have which is that I absolutely believe Soul Music is an artform, which would suggest it should be timeless. Only time will tell. Applying modern cultural theory, classical music (or even jazz) does not have to be used as a model, but unfortunately, Soul Music hangs on binary oppositions of grain and something along the lines of 'if I have to explain, you wouldn't understand'. Obviously hadn't read/ retained your 82 cut-off and I think her first two albums perhaps warrants a rethink. I was still involved in weekenders ten years later and soul fans at least, were still preoccupied with vinyls (too many still are). But I'd have also wanted to include Angie Stone, the only Soul Artist to emerge in the last twenty years, to stand with the greats. The funk jazz/ funk divide is a real toughy, not only because of James Brown, Isleys and Maze, but also Curtis, Marvin, Willie Hutch and countless others. I suspect you're not all that keen on funk, at least after JB, and I'll hazard a stab you're also big on Sly, but that's more or less it. As somebody who has gone through the ninety year history of jazz, most jazz people think jazz funk is smooth jazz is universally dreadful. I like jazz-funk (though not smooth jazz) but I tend to put it with soul/funk rather than jazz. Having made the decision (or accepted the inevitability) to include funk, Roy Ayers is probably one you should have included, though - again - I suspect it's not your thing. Finally, didn't know you were playing in Bilbao or I'd have gone - no pressure than.
  14. Just come across the top 100 at the end. I remember many years ago reading Lady Soul is the best Soul Album ever, and while I've never been able to split them, I'm surprised he had her so high. Id probably have them both - in consecutive positions - much further down the list and wouldn't have a third, but if I did, it wouldn't be YG and B. I understand him not wanting Whats Going On in pole position but wouldn't have gone Aretha. Surely he doesn't have Otis Blue in vol 2. Paul Kelly has slipped down since Voices from the Shadows and, while I never had it on vinyls, Hooked Hogtied and Collared has been in my basket for a couple years, it's just been promoted. A cheap Best Of is as much as I could ever be interested in by Etta James and the Don Covay is new to me so need to investigate. Not a great singer in my view (Nor Syl Johnson). I'd have at least 4 Al Green albums ahead of Gets Next to you - 3 of which he has - but probably only 2 in the top 100. I used to have Sam Dees on a parr with Marvin, then second only to, then best album not by Marvin, but may now have best not by Marvin, Curtis/Impressions or Luther Ingram. Probably about eighth. I get why he has these particular JB album so high, but most of the albums I've bought have been unheard and that's how I like it. Prior to CDs, which makes it much easier to trawl through piles and piles of albums, James was probably best heard on compilations, of which there are loads. The 3 volumes of Soul Classics were the ones for me. I'd probably have Dells albums but maybe not these ones and I'd definitely have Chilites albums but definitely not these ones. I'd have People get Ready as the top Impressions album (perhaps not surprisingly) with Young Mods second, My Country third with the debut fourth, and maybe all 4 in top 100. As a blues fan, Two steps by Bobby Bland album is much over-rated by pop nerds trying to talk about Soul. Johnny Adams is a fantastic choice. l'd probably agree with his choice of Luther Ingram though I'd have the other two masterpieces as well; possibly all top 20, but no room for Stealaway Hideaway. Garland Green absolutely, though I'd have JR Bailey and Anthony White ahead of Lou Courtney. While I love Ashford and Simpson, Come as you Are and Is it Still Good to You are the only totally succesful albums, neither of which are the 2 he's selected. Sandra Feva absolutely. John Edwards is a highly rated album, and while it's good, there's much wrong with it and I may prefer the one on Cotillion. His choice of Isleys makes me think he maybe should have tried to find a way to not include Funk, though the JBs is a monster. I don't think Phases of Reality is particularly William Bells best though I was the first person I ever heard play Man in the Streets. Bizzarely I don't know this particular Tyrone Davis album which shall be rectified soon, though I'll be surprised if I have it top 100. Which brings us back to Marvin. Lets Get it On and the sixties hits are the reason it took me so long to get into him - yes I was one of those who, in 74/75/76, thought JJ was better. I love Keep Getting it On and a couple others, but the first live album has the best version of Distant Lover. The album hasn't aged well and some of it's pretty crap. I'd have Here my Dear, In Our Lifetime and I Want You, maybe as high as top 20, but I'm not sure LGIO would make the list at all. No problems with Millie Jackson, James Carr, Jerry Butler, Blue Magic, Linda Jones, Shirley Brown, Ike Hayes (though not that album), Otis Clay and Walter Jackson. Wouldn't have Doris Duke, Mitty Collier, Solomon Burke, Tops (as an album band), Gladys Knight (doing so well), (that) Donny Hathaway, Clarence Carter, Ray Charles, Sam Cook or Ace Spectrum. Would have GC Cameron, Lamont, Facts of Life, Michael Henderson, ZZ Hill, Willie Hutch, Charles Jackson and some funk. Most bizarre exclusion, which seems inexplicable and may be an oversight, though I suspect not, is Anita Baker, who, as far as I have read, is excluded entirely as a solo artist. Songstress would certainly make this list and possibly Rapture too. Still the best book on Soul in the known galaxy, though part 2 is still battling it out with 600 CDs in my basket.
  15. We put a Soul Night on here circa 89. Me, Jonathan Allen, Tony Boyce and Alex Lowes DJd. A few came from Teeside if I remember correctly. I remember I played Margie Joseph - Ridin High, Randy Brown - I'm Here, Tyrone Davis - Aint Nothin I can Do, Backstabbers; nobody knew any of them at the time. Alex nailed it with Terry Callier - Don't Want to See Myself, Jesse James and Sidney Joe Qualls. The rest of his set was crap but he just blew the roof with the three biggest records around at that time. Good venue and I'll try to make it if I'm not at work.

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