Monday, February 3, 2020

KV - 1970's UK Northern Soul Break-dancing

The Northern Soul dancers liked to wear baggy flared trousers which went high up the waist.

I always thought break-dancing was an American 80's phenomenon, but in the North of England the British were doing something similar in the 70's. It all started in a small dance club in Wigan, a town in Greater Manchester. It was called The Wigan Casino, and the dance scene it inspired came to be known as Northern Soul.

The North of England during the 70's didn't really get into the hippy thing as they were too working class for any 'airy-fairy' prog rock, Genesis, Yes, and Glam, but they loved dancing to soul music. At the same time Kung-fu (a type of kickboxing) came out and young people were inspired by Bruce Lee's super-human skills, and so they adopted his gymnastics into their soul dancing. It looks so good.

The Northern Soul dancers loved rare soul records as these were less commercial and had more drive, and so the English DJ's would go to America to find them, hunting around in basement shops. When the DJ's found a great record which pulled in the crowds, they would cover the label up so no one knew what it was.

There was lots of companies competing with Motown and they were producing a lot of records, but they would slip through the cracks and only a few pressings were ever made. Very often, the artists never got paid, and if it it wasn't for Northern Soul, they would have disappeared without a trace. They knew their records were doing well in the UK but had no idea by how much as they never got any royalties from them. Only recently have some of these artists got the recognition they deserve.

I wished I lived in Wigan in the 70's as the dancing looks fantastic!

A recent fun weekend dance celebrating Northern Soul. 

A news article about Northern Soul.

It looks such great fun! Loads of energy in this song, it really flies!

Some vintage footage of Northern Soul. What incredible fun it looks!


If you have got this far, then below is a good documentary on Nothern Soul.

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