Saturday, 11 September 2010
It took a long time coming, but finally the newly released film SoulBoy captures the Northern Soul phenomenon centred around Wigan Casino in 1974. The film is only only on limited released up to October, but here's hoping it will go on general release later. I love Northern Soul music and it evokes such great memories of those times. One of my older brothers was a big NS fan and had lots of the records, the Birmingham bags (flared trousers with a high waistband) and some gymnastic dance moves practiced regularly in his upstairs bedroom much to the annoyance of my mum and dad in the lounge below trying to watch Morecambe and Wise. He also had a Lambretta scooter and I remember thinking it was quite cool to have an older brother who liked great music and had a scooter as well. Northern Soul at that time captured something very special.. It was music enjoyed by Northern youngsters and held firmly in the North in one of Wigan's old cinema houses. It soon gained a cult following with coachloads trekking in for the famous all-nighters. It's dance routines mixed a rhythmic dancebeat with superb gymnastic ability. Memories from those who danced at Wigan speak of the heat, the sweat, the smell of Brut in the air and the bar inside the casino selling orange juice and vimto! I just remember listening to some superb music from Gloria Jones' Tainted Love, through to There's a Ghost In My House. I also remember the great fashions, the lad's long hair and the badges sewn onto bags - round with a picture of a black power fist and surrounded by 'Blackpool Soul'.
Here in Blackpool's recently demolished Mecca building was also the place to be be for Northern Soul nights. Forty years on from their heyday and they're still going strong in various venues around Blackpool.
Anyway, I shall go and see SoulBoy and will report back my findings on tht FFB blog...