Philadelphia – The Philly Sound

The Sound of Philadelphia Volume 1

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The Philadelphia Sound - Book

From the people who did that great magazine ‘There’s That Beat!’

How Philly became the Epicenter of Black Music!

The passionate team behind the acclaimed Northern Soul magazine There’s That Beat!, presents here in over 690 lavishly designed pages, their in-depth investigation of how Philadelphia became the hottest city in the American pop and soul music industry, not only once, but twice!

This meticulously researched book tells the remarkable story of the music entrepreneurs, songwriters, arrangers, record labels, recording studios all of which contributed to what became known as The Philly Sound, all beautifully presented in full, sumptuous, coloured detail, including a multitude of rare Soul/R&B discs, vintage photographs and memorabilia.

A quality point of reference and and superb book for any serious soul music fanatics as well as a must for every true Northern Soul record collector!

Looks like this book is a ‘have to have item’ for all Soul fans, covering the entire scene from that great city that also gave us that spreading cheese.

Philadelphia Soul

All Stars

Janis Joplin

Janis Joplin - Piece Of My Heart

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Carefree and wonderful free spirit, taken from us all too soon. A white woman with a soulful voice. A Soul singer, a blues singer, a great singer, a Soulful singer. A life of great promise cut short by an addiction to drugs, a lonely Soul, she just needed support and love.

Janis Joplin - as she was born
Janis Joplin – as she was born

She started out as the singer with Big Brother and The Holding Company before going solo.

Cry Baby (original – Garnet Mimms)
Piece Of My Heart (original – Erma Franklin)

Janis Joplin

Janis Joplin – Greatest Hits

Deanie Parker – singer turned Publicist

1964 Deanie Parker - Each Step I Take [HQ]

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Each Step I Take

Deanie Parker was born in Mississippi a Stax artist, singer and songwriter.

She then became an Director or Publicity at the Stax. She also became the CEO of the Soulsville Stax Museum in Memphis. She also co-wrote Whole Lot of Love a hit for Homer Banks and Simply Red.

Deanie Parker, singer turned publicist turned CEO

The Soul Music of Civil Rights

Soul Music and the Civil Rights Movement - Tyina Steptoe

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SOUL MUSIC & CIVIL RIGHTS IN THE USA – an article on the subject.

The Soul Music of Civil Rights – Here we list some of the best and most interesting songs from the period in the sixties and later. Many artists had to hide the underlying meaning of their lyrics so as not to attract direct hostility. 

Dr. Martin Luther King and his movement of course initiated a lot of it. Its an interesting story. The film Mississippi Burning tells a terrible story but it was those events, and the martyrdom of two white students supporting the black Civil Rights movement that particularly inflamed the KKK white supremacists and changed the entire dynamic of the times, a great film.

Motown Sound – The Sixties Albums

Motown Chartbusters Vol.3 (Into the Grooves Album Discussion #3)

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Motown Sound albums were released in the sixties. One of the very best things about Motown in the sixties was that they issued LP’s with lots of their hit tracks on them. It was ideal for promoting there artists and for fans who could get lots and lots of great sounds relatively inexpensively.

Sneered at by 45 singles collectors at the time, these days these collections are very valuable on vinyl:

There were lots of compilations such as British Motown Chartbusters, Motown Magic etc., and even box sets like this USA release:


It has audio introductions and stories told by the artists.

Stateside issued Motown Live Tour recordings:

Also rare and hard to find CD collections keeps up the tradition:

The Newbeats

The Newbeats Bread & Butter

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Run Baby Run

It was knowing they were white and that awful but popular song Bread and Butter that put us off these The Newbeats at the time in 1965. Yes as Soul Mods at that time we only recognized black artists in the main as being legitimate Soul singers. But of course with hindsight its a silly elitist view of things that blind you to the value of things. This type of selection or rejection of things based from a certain adopted ‘attitude’ is a sort of fault in human mentality; we all suffer from from time to time; PHEW!

Having said that The Northern scene adopted this record and Kev Roberts puts it into his Top 500 at position 355. However in that entry in his book he claims that Run Baby Run was accepted and that everyone wanted it – this is very far from correct – see above.

The lead voice (falsetto) in the group – Larry Henley – did a solo and this was another that the later-day Northern Soul scene adopted: Crying My Heart Out.

Billy Stewart

Billy Stewart - Sitting in the Park

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Fat Boy
I Do love You
Because I Love You
Sitting In The Park

Born 24th March 1937 – Washington, D.C.
Died 17th January 1970 – Neuse River, North Carolina

Billy Stewart nicknamed ‘The Fat Boy’ was a pianist and soul singer and writer – the other FAT MAN was of course Fats Domino. He was given his first chance by Bo Diddley who gave him a backing musician’s job after hearing him play backstage.

Billy is best remembered for SITTING IN THE PARK, I DO LOVE YOU, BECAUSE I LOVE YOU, and his biggest popular hit SUMMERTIME.

Summertime was a George Gershwin standard but never before or since treated in such a remarkably stuttering style as the Billy Stewart version.

SECRET LOVE attempted to copy the success of Summertime but was inferior. Billy Stewart Recorded on the CHESS label. He was tragically killed in a car crash 17 January 1970 at the age of 32. When 17 he was in a group – The Rainbows which also included: Marvin Gaye, Chester Simmons, John Berry and Don Covey.

Billy Steward

The FAT BOY played live at Manchester Twisted Wheel on 11th January 1969 and it was a great show. I Do Love You was a massive hit at all the Manchester Soul clubs.

Billy Stewart – Wikipedia

Chuck Wood

Chuck Wood - Seven Days Too Long

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SEVEN DAYS TOO LONG – Roulette, 1966, Transatlantic 1967

Chuck Wood is best remembered for a track that would become one of the favourite soul anthems of the sixties – Seven Days Too Long. Seven Days to the next Twisted Wheel all nighter was sometimes too long as well!

But we got through the working week to return the next Saturday night to swing and turn and dance and talk and groove to sounds like this fantastic track when we danced all night at the Twisted Wheel.

Chuck Wood – Soul Shing Aling (Roulette) the B side of Seven Days Too Long also had a lot of plays.

Chuck Wood

We never heard from him again. Who was he? where is he? We can’t find Chuck…Kev Roberts puts him at no:10 in his Top 500. And Dexy’s Midnight Runners did a version – always wondered what exactly inspired that name….? Dexies  assisted dancing to Seven Days: OKay the games up!

I’ve Got My Lovelight Shining – Big D  107

The ‘B’ Side Baby You Win


Chuck Wood – Funky16

Listen to Chuck Wood – Last FM

Chuck Wood – Berlin Battery

Wikipedia: Chuck Wood

Chris Kenner

FIVE SPEED By Chris Kenner

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Land of 1000 Dances

Something You Got

Born 25th December 1929 – Kenner, LA

Died 25th January 1976 – New Orleans, LA.

Chris Kenner’s songs can be heard on the CD Charly CD 230 I LIKE IT LIKE THAT  (Produced by Allen Toussaint) 1961 (Joe Babashak’s Instant label).

Soul fans know Chris Kenner for releasing the original – LAND OF A 1000 DANCES – in the UK on Sue in 1964.

Chris Kenner

Something You Got  was  also a big soul hit in Manchester soul clubs.

These tracks are New Orleans R ‘n B classics. I Like It like That was Grammy-nominated. He co-wrote Sick and Tired with Fats Domino and had a small local hit with it in 1957 on Imperial although Fats Domino’s version was better!