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Classic Jamaican sounds on the cheap: The Blue Beat box set

Wednesday, 23 April 2014 09:31:07 BST

Classic Jamaican Sounds

How does the idea of 75 tracks of classic ska and reggae for just over £5 grab you? That's what you get with the upcoming Blue Beat box set.

It looks like a cheap and cheerful set in terms of packaging and (we would guess) in terms of sleevenotes. If you want an in-depth critique of the label, you perhaps need to look elsewhere.

But if you just want to hear some of the classic Jamaican R&B and ska released by the London-based label in the 1960s, this could be for you. It isn't exhaustive. After all, the label produced around 400 singles and a few albums in its time. But the pick is definitely here, kicking off with the very first release from the label, which was Laurel Aitken’s Boogie Rock, should you want to know.

As we said, this is an absolute bargain at £5.82 and should serve as a great introduction to the genre or if you are a collector, a way of saving wear and tear on your vinyl! Amazon has this on pre-order now ahead of a 26th May shelf date. More details here, as well as a full tracklisting.

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Posted in News By David Walker

Book now: 22nd Northern and Modern Rare Soul Weekender

Wednesday, 23 April 2014 09:25:59 BST

Northern and Modern Rare Soul Weekender

Fancy a weekend of rare soul over the summer? Perhaps it's wise to get yourself booked into the 22nd Northern and Modern Rare Soul Weekender.

It takes place from 13th - 15th June 2014 at the Beachcomber Holiday Centre in Cleethorpes, with the first details of the event now announced.

Heading up the bill will be Sandy Wynns, who will be belting out (although that's perhaps not the best phrase) northern soul classics 'Love Belongs To Everyone', 'I'll Give That To You', 'How Can Something Be So Wrong' and 'The Touch Of Venus', along with some modern soul gems too.

Alongside Sandy will be Detroit and Chicaao soul man Greg Perry, delivering tunes such as 'It Takes Heart', 'Head Over Heels (In Love)', 'Variety Is The Spice Of Life' and many more.

Of course, the dancefloors will be just as important, as you would expect from the folk behind the iconic 100 Club all-nighters. Expect three rooms of northern and modern soul from the pick of the scene's DJs.

If that floats your boat, weekend passes are £59 each. Accommodation is is full on site, but there are spaces at nearby Thorpe Park for staying over. All the details can be found at the 6TS website.

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Posted in News By David Walker

Going out: For The Love Of Mod film screening in Brighton

Tuesday, 22 April 2014 10:18:38 BST

For the Love of MOD

If you happen to be in the Brighton area, you can catch a screening of the For The Love Of Mod documentary next month.

The screening party offers up a chance to see the 30-minute documentary, which takes in the people at the heart of today's mod scene in London and offers up an insight into their world. Director Emma-Rosa Dias will also be on hand to take a Q&A session afterwards, with special guest DJ Eddie Piller offering up the club sounds at the afterparty.

It all takes place on Sunday 11th May at the Hotel Pelirocco, Regency Square, Brighton BN1 2FG. Doors are open from 6:30pm (film screening at 7pm) and tickets are £4 in advance. You can buy them here.

If you can't make it to Brighton, you can order a copy of the mini movie directly from the eBay website, along with the previous Faces In The Crowd documentary for £13.99.

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Posted in News By David Walker

Coming soon: Skinheads 1979 - 1984 by Derek Ridgers

Thursday, 17 April 2014 09:45:30 BST

Skinheads 1979

Not so much a book, Skinheads 1979 - 1984 by Derek Ridgers is more a document of the era.

The book's concept was down to a chance meeting. In early 1979, whilst undertaking a photo assignment on the growing new romantic scene, Derek encountered a group of skinheads, who suggested he took photos of them instead.

After striking up a friendship, the photos continued, taking in an upcoming Bank Holiday jaunts to the seaside and eventually, five years of taking photos of the skinhead movement out and about, either in London or at nearby coastal towns.

The pick of the imagery is collected in this book, which is published by Omnibus Press on 14th July 2014, but available to order now via Amazon. 100 photos in total, including 32 pages in colour.

If the skinhead movement is your thing, it's likely to be a book to have. Or one to add to a birthday or Christmas list.

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Posted in News By David Walker

For the diary: Motown at Proud Galleries in London

Monday, 14 April 2014 09:20:27 BST

Motown at Proud Galleries

It's not for a while yet, but you might want to make a note in your diary for Motown at Proud Galleries in London.

The exhibition, which is in conjunction with EMI, Bravado and Universal Music, celebrates the iconic label, with early images such as shots of artists on their first UK tour in 1964, taking in further images throughout that decade and into the 1970s.

Acts on display will include The Jackson 5, Diana Ross (presumably with the other Supremes), Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder for example, with this exclusive photography mixing portrait imagery with street photos and intimate shots, such as Marvin Gaye embracing his son.

It's said to be the first of a series of Motown exhibitions at Proud, celebrating 50 years of hit making (although the label is certainly a few years older than that). If you want to take in the first part of that, head to Proud at Chalk Farm Road, London NW1 8AH between 14th May and 13th July. It will run Monday through to Sunday, 11am to 5pm, entry being free.

Keep an eye on the Proud website for more details.

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Posted in News By David Walker

Manchester's got soul: The Hideaway Club returns in May

Thursday, 10 April 2014 16:34:07 BST

If you aren't familiar with Manchester's Hideaway Club, then you really should make up for that on Saturday 31st May.

The club was a regular from 1999 in the city, taking a fairly short sabbatical before returning last year with much the same formula. That's essentially the sound of the original 1960s mod club scene, early R&B, club soul and ska being the order of the day. Many have copied the formula since, but the Hideaway still does it the best and still very much under the radar.

If you find yourself with some free time on 31st May, head Upstairs at The Nags Head, Lloyd Street, off Deansgate in city centre Manchester for the free daytime sessions (12 - 5pm) with DJs, record stalls and clothing sales (plus food and drink obviously).

Alternatively, the main event runs from 9pm - 2:30am, with residents Neil Henderson and Mike Warburton joined by Mike Hawkins (Down in the Basement Manchester), Andrew Miller (Manchester collector) and Bill Kealy (For Dancers Only Dublin). £5 gets you on for that. Don't forget your dancing shoes.

If you can't make that one, another event is planned for later in the summer.

The Hideaway Club
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Posted in News By David Walker

Going out: Modstock in London - 50 years of mod

Wednesday, 9 April 2014 13:31:30 BST

Not quite sure how anyone can pinpoint mod to a particular year in the 1960s (not least because it had its roots in the 1950s), but it seems that the year mod went overground in 1964 is the year selected, which means the upcoming Modstock is a celebration of 50 years of mod.

The event promises to cover mod in all its incarnations, offering clubs, live music, shopping, scooter, a fashion show, a selection of movies, a riverboat trip and more in the capital, specifically over the Easter bank holiday weekend. That's right, not long off, so perhaps get those tickets and hotels sorted now.

In terms of the music, that kicks off with mod revival act Secret Affair (plus support) on the Thursday, a Motown revue on the Friday with the Velvelettes and Brenda Holloway, some Small Faces classics with original mender Kenney Jones and friends on Saturday (plus Eddie Phillips of The Creation) and a Sunday night with Les Cappuccino and The Mergers. Guest clubs over the weekend include The Boiler, RNB 123, Mousetrap and Crossfire.

It's pretty much a one-step shop for mod, so if that's your thing, it's probably a no-brainer and a good chance to mix with like-minded folk. Tickets vary in price depending on how long you can stay, but as a guide, a three-day weekend ticket (not including the riverboat) comes in a £59. You can pay individually for events and pay on the door - but note that some events might sell out.

You can get your tickets here

Mod Stock in London
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Posted in News By David Walker

It's been in production for years and delayed at least a couple of times for various reasons. But finally, this month sees the release of Mods – The New Religion! book by Paul ‘Smiler’ Anderson on Omnibus Press.

It's being billed as the ultimate book on the 1960s mod scene, covering around 304 pages and 122,000 words, which perhaps gives you a fair idea of the detail here. Within those pages, you'll find interviews with first-generation mods from all over Britain, their fashions, their clubs, their lifestyle. Not just another book on the London mod scene, which is definitely a bonus.

The book also features the bands and musicians of the day, the movers in the fashion world and some of the rarest ephemera from the original scene. The likes of rare record labels, club membership cards, posters and handbills, plus never before seen photos of Rod Stewart, The Small Faces, Steve Ellis, David Bowie and many more.

If the book lives up to the hype, it should be the must-have book on mod (alongside the Richard Barnes Mods book, obviously). If you want it, the book is out on 14th April 2014, selling for just under £20 at Amazon

New Religion
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Posted in News By David Walker

Vintage Glasgow returns for 2014

Monday, 7 April 2014 17:19:03 BST

Brush off your vintage clobber and if you have some, your vintage transport too. That's because Vintage Glasgow has just been confirmed for 2014.

After a sell-out event last year, it was inevitable really, so make a note in your diary for Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 July, which just happens to be the first weekend of the Commonwealth Games too. So booking accommodation early might be an idea.

Get that (and the tickets) sorted and you can look forward to an event showcasing British music, fashion, film, art, dance, food and design from the 1920s to the 1980s. That includes northern soul sounds at the Soul Casino with Eddie Piller, the Charleston Brunch with Snowboy for 1920s vibes, Let It Rock for '50s rock 'n' roll and R&B, The Torch club for mid-20th century sounds and Vintage Spins The Commonwealth, with DJs travelling the Commonwealth nations for cool dancefloor sounds.

If that's not enough, you can check out the vintage hair and beauty salon, the vintage marketplace, food stalls, fashion, film, art and much much more. In fact, if you have a vintage car (pre-89), you can also take part in the classic car boot sale too.

Tickets are available now, with prices depending on what you want to take part in (and if you want to camp). See the site for all the details and you know what? I might see you there.

Vintage Glasgow
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Posted in News By David Walker

If you didn't know, Record Store Day is coming up on Saturday 19th April. There's a website dedicated to it, which show all the releases coming up. But one has caught our eye.

Elaine Constantine's Northern Soul movie has been talked about for months and has had limited previews. But the movie is finally set for a full release this summer. When it does, it promises a killer northern soul soundtrack (as you would expect), with a couple of tracks off it being released on good old fashioned vinyl for RSD 2014.

That single is released via the Harmless label, containing James Fountain's classic 'Seven Day Lover' from 1970, coupled with The Montclair’s 'Hung Up On Your Love' from a couple of years later and a heavy spin at the Blackpool Mecca back in the day.

Getting one is the hard bit, as this release is limited to just 1,000 copies worldwide, which will only be available to buy at participating Record Store Day stores (which are listed on the official site). You might need to set the alarm too, as releases tend to be swept up early by collectors. Probably worth it though, as this should be something of a collector's item in years to come.

When we get details of the full release of Northern Soul, we'll obviously let you know.

Rare Soul
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Posted in News By David Walker