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Northern Soul

Home > Brisbane > Music | Nightlife
Published October 29th 2009
Northern Soul is sixties soul music, typically by black American artists who had no or limited chart success with their recordings. The music was discovered and made popular by clubs in Northern England (Hence the name). The music still has a cult following today and has made itís way to Brisbane.

The heavy beat and fast tempo makes these songs fantastic to dance to. Many sound so familiar that you'll honestly think youíve heard them before yet they are so rare that only a handful of people own originals (Northern Soul classic ďDo I Love YouĒ by Frank Wilson sold for a world record 25,742 British Pounds earlier this year)

Soul in the City is held at The Polish Club in Milton and began around 5 years ago after The National Northern Soul Weekender was held there in 2004. The Weekender is Australiaís biggest Northern Soul gathering and is alternated through each state annually. This yearís event is on the Gold Coast on November 6th, 7th and 8th.

Other than the music, the main attraction is the dancing. Northern Soul has itís own unique style of dancing which may bewilder you at first. It basically consists of shuffling your feet along the floor (traditionally talcum powder is placed on the dance floor to reduce grip.) Despite looking a bit strange and fairly easy, it does take a little bit of getting used to. But thatís half the fun.

If youíre lucky you may see some of the classic old school moves. During the 70ís visiting American performers and the emergence of disco & break-dancing resulted in certain moves being incorporated into the dancing. Some of the spins, flips and most particularly backdrops these dancers can pull off are awesome. Itís one of the few scenes that has more male dancers than female.

Despite the intricacy of some of the moves the main aim is to let loose and enjoy yourself. Nobody is watching you for mistakes.

Resident DJ Gary Williamson has been involved in the club from the start and is still very passionate about the music. ďItís carefree dancing to brilliant music, itís friendships and good times that have lasted decades found through a love of rare soul music. Itís an underground scene that has lasted 40 years and is still as important to me now. If not more than it was when I first discovered it.

The venue itself is good and drinks are cheap. The beers are of strong European style (It is The Polish Club after all). Ask the barmaid for a cinnamon vodka and apple juice. Delicious!!

Anyone who loves Motown music (and letís face it, who doesnít) should certainly give this night a go.
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Why? Great Music plus Great Dancing = Great Times
When: The last Saturday of every 2nd month
Where: The Polish Club, 10 Marie Street, Milton
Cost: $10.00
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