Northern soul, deep funk, and fine living in Pittsburgh. You are what you dance to.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Glory to the Winners of the War!!!




Monday, January 29, 2007

Nothing Compares To You

Quick post to say GOOD JOB, everybody, at January 19's sweltering Soulcialist Party Workers meeting. I was impressed with the work you all did, steaming up the spot despite below-freezing temp's outside. Special thanks to Ian & DJ for guesting with Johnno & I - it was a spectacular night of stormy Northern Soul!

Next installment coming soon: FEBRUARY 9 at the Eagle.

And it's a biggie - nothing less than Soulcialism's FOUR-YEAR anniversary as your Northern Soul one-stop shop... more info, including news on the FREE CD(s) you'll get, soon!!


Friday, January 05, 2007

2006 - One of the Top Ten Years of the Decade


In lieu of doing something that required thought and effort, I've asked a few northern-soul types from Pittsburgh's Soulcialist Party Workers Extended Network of Comrades to drop top-ten-of-ought-six lists on us all. I asked for top-ten's from "any style, any decade," and they delivered - from my straight-up northern list to the James Gang and Lone Catalysts!!

So check this out, or ignore it, or whatever. Here's what rocked us in the Year of Dick Cheney Shootin' Mugs.

Juddy’s Soulcialism Top Ten for 2006
All Northern Soul ’n’ RnB
Since all of my cohorts took the “any style, any decade” part of my top-ten list request very seriously (and good on ‘em for it!), I’ve decided to just list ten Soulcialism plays that became favorites of mine this year.

Well, OK, it’s more than ten. I figured only listing ten records would be a sorta ‘cut ‘n’ run’ attitude – and we don’t want that. So in the spirit of modern-day America, I’ve bent the rules of logic a little bit…

10. Tranells – Blessed with a Love … unearthed from obscurity, and sent straight back there – aka the white eagle…

10. Young Jessie – You Were Meant for Me … one of several here that I seem to like more than everybody else combined – blinding R&B …

9. World’s Greatest Sinners – Miss Treatment … Jordan Valentine proves that she can belt ‘’em out like nobody else (her age), and that she single-handedly keeps the hair-care product market alive…

8. Etta James – Mellow Fellow and Seven Day Fool … Who dissed Etta so bad?

7. Alex Brown – Love Really Hurts Without You … femme vox may not be superior to Billy Ocean, but at least it’s a different version …

6. Barbra Carr – Shake Your Head … maybe one of the greatest records ever made, and only about 110 seconds long! According to the Bonedaddy, this record was the sound of 60s Pittsburgh dances – nice …

6. The Vontastics – Day Tripper … surprised by the response to this, as I don’t even dig it that much, but the people speak with their dancing feet …

5. Jackie Wilson – 3 Days 1 Hour 30 Minutes … my current favorite by arguably the greatest-ever soul singer … it almost hurts to listen to, what with all the grinning … and booze …

4. Hector Rivera – I Want a Chance For Romance … stand-in for the hot boogaloo action going on the turntables these days … could’ve been Bobby Valentin or Manny Corchado, but this one’s newer so I ain’t sick of it yet … plus Kris Rockwell bought me a beer when I first played it …

3. Brooks O’Dell – The Lively Ones … nobody likes it as much as me … killer mid-tempo, beauty voice, and I’d had it on my ‘watch out!’ list for a year, so finding it was probably better than actually listening to it … let me put up my anorak hood now …

3. The Crowns – Jerking the Dog … “I want everybody / who feels like I do …” Clap your hands and stomp your feet … makes me think I’m in a London club in 1965 high on speed … again …

2. Soulcialism New Orleans comp II selections: Diamond Joe – Gossip Gossip and How to Pick a Winner; Clarence Garlow – Sound the Bell; The Rubaiyats – Omar Khayyam … Tha ought-six was all about bringing back the Crescent City, and remembering what we lost … these became some of my favorites … along with about 400 others …

1. Sidney Hall – Weekend … rarer-than-rare, so it’s CD-for-me! … this thing is all about Pittsburgh weekends, just like we are: “It might be Sunday when it’s over / this little party of mine / I’m gonna drink all I can drink / honey you know it’s true / why should a hard workin’ man like me / let the weekend find me blue” …

Alpha and Omega. James Brown - Catalog … we’ll call the track for this one, “Jay Malls’ wicked five-hour JB-only set at Kelly’s right after Xmas” … there’s nothing left to say about JB except SOCK IT TO ’EM!!

A few more RIP honorable mentions: Wilson Pickett, “Baby Don’t You Weep”; Barbara Hall, “You Brought it On Yourself”; Lou Rawls, “Trouble Down Here Below”; Ruth Brown, “Mama, He Treat Your Daughter Mean”; Barbara George, “Love”; Ahmet Ertegun, “Everything On Atlantic”; Marshall Sehorn, “Everything on Sansu (including Diamond Joe as above”.

Jay Malls' Top-10 of 2006
Check Jay out at THE BIG THROWBACK, monthly at Brillo Box, and around town in general

Foster Sylvers - Misdemeanor (Pride)
Mel-man - The Mel-man (Movement Prod.)
Headliners - Little Sister (Super-M)
Creative Source – Who is He and What is He to You (Paul Winley) 12”boot- version
Myra Barnes - Message From the Soulsisters (King)

James Brown – Blues and Pants (Polydor)
Lone Catalysts - Ones We Miss (B.U.K.A.)
Johnny Pate - Shaft in Africa (ABC)
U.S. Navy Port Authority Soul Band – Can’t Get Down, if I Can’t Get Up (USN?)
45 King – Checkmate You Lose feat. Ron Delight (Tuff City)

D.J.'s Top-10 of 2006
Check D.J.'s northern soul, reggae, etc. out monthly at Restless at the Smilin' Moose
1. Bobby Helms - Let's Copp a Groove into Joe Cuba's Bang Bang!
2. Kenny Hamber - Looking for a Love
3. Otis Redding - Papa's Got A Brand New Bag
4. Joe Tex - I Gotcha
5. Joe Bataan - Special Girl
6. Merry Clayton - Gimme Shelter
7. Pete Rodriguez - Oh So Nice
8. Freddie & The Kinfolk - Mashed Potato Popcorn
9. The Soul City - Everybody Dance Now
10. Combinations - Bump Ball!

Johnno's Top-10 Britpop 'chunes of 2006
Soulcialist and ace anglophile Soccer John skips soul in favor of new Limey sounds!
10. The Holloways - Generator
9. The Feeling - Fill My Little World
8. Ordinary Boys - Lonely at the Top
7. The Fratellis - Chelsea Dagger
6. The Kooks - Ooh La
5. Scissor Sisters - I don't Feel Like Dancing
4. Magic Numbers - Take a Chance
3. McFly - Sorry's Not Good Enough
2. Jaime T. - If You Got the Money
1. The Guillemots - Made Up Love Song #43

Ian Friend's Top-10 of 2006
A hearty mix of things you'll hear when this fella guests at Restless, and spins at his own THERMAL night weekly at the Lava Lounge
1: Clifford Curry - "Miss Shake-a-Plenty (In the micro-mini)"
2: Jackie Lee - "Your Sweetness Is My Weakness (B. White)"
3: O.V. Wright - "Oh Baby Mine"
4: Pheonix - (Tie) "The Rally" or "Sometimes In The Fall"
5: Gnarls Barkley - (Tie) "Smiley Faces" or "Who Cares?"
6: The Departure - "Arms Around Me"
7: Von Iva - "Soul Shaker"
8: CSS - "Let's Make Love & Listen To Death From Above"
9: Radio Birdman - "Smith & Wesson Blues"
10: The Mystery Girls - "My Bed Her Home"

Kris Rock's Top-10 Every-Mof'n Thing of 2006
Soulcialist Kris "James Brown Stole My Dad's Airplane" Rockwell truly leaves pretense in the past-tense and drops a Northern-Soul-Meets-"Guitar Hero" list on us. And while it's not true that the Police ever made a listenable song (tee hee), it actually is true that James Brown once stole Kris's dad's airplane. Like, f'real.

10. Boston - More Than a Feeling
Why? Because it's classic late 70's rock that just rules when you are playing Guitar Hero. And seriously, how does any man hit and sustain that high note?

9. Beastie Boys - Get It Together
The Beastie Boys. Not too much more to say.

8. Laurel Aitken - Hey Bartender
Just one more drink. Please? No, seriously...Please?

7. The Police - Invisible Sun
A less known, darker Police song. Well done.

6. James Brown - It's a New Day Part 1
Nope, not because he's dead, but because the song rocks pure and simple. And he's right: We gotta let the girls know what we want. Plus, he stole my dad's airplane.

5. Freda Payne - Unhooked Generation
If you are a Soulcialism regular, I know what you are thinking - "Holy crap! She has another song?" Yes she does, and it's better than that other one.

4. Fort Knox Five - The Brazilian Hipster
Great break beats, a jazzy feel and a nice Brazilian influence. What more do you need?

3. Eric B. & Rakim - Juice (Know The Ledge)
Not only is Rakim a rapping master, but the loops in this track will make you stop and say "Holy crap! That rocks!". From the starting bass riff to the funky flute loop, this song takes you just a little past the ledge.

2. The James Gang - Funk #49
This song is becoming more popular (again) and with good reason. Work this into any mix and you have a guaranteed crowd pleaser. Hearing these guys live on the Howard Stern show just proves they still got it.

1. Mary Wells - Can't you See (You're Losing Me)
I love female vocals on Norther Soul tracks. The piano and upbeat tempo are added elements that keep this track rockin'. If you hear me DJ, you WILL hear this track.