He was initiated into Modernist culture at a young age and attended his first Mod weekender at 14. Whilst trying to sleep on some retro club stairs he recalls hearing Chuck Wood's "Seven Days Too Long" reverberating around his brain. So started his obsession with Northern Soul and all things Modernist: the fashion, attitude to life, scooters, music (dee-jaying, listening and performing) and dancing.
"There Was A Time" and "The Waterfront Blues & Soul Club" are his events though he receives tremendous promotional support from his fellow dee-jays. The key aims of these events is to expose the younger generations to all things soulful and show them that there are many choices out there in regards to music, fashion and outlook on life. They don't have to settle for the music they are bombarded with by "the powers that be".
Guest DJ Sunday 14th August
SAM EVANS !‘Sam is a true stalwart of the soul, mod and scooter scene. Her first all-nighter was at Hinckley Leisure Centre in 1983 as a 13 year old and has never looked back ! DJing since 2003 she currently DJs & co promotes the critically acclaimed 'Hinckley Soul Club' with Andy Baskett & Wayne Haynes along with one of the Uks foremost modern soul clubs 'Soul Purpose' with Mark Goddard & Mark Randle. Sam also runs a little funk and soul night called 'Behind The Groove' along with being a resident DJ at A1 Soul Club , Grantham with Andy and Barry Cooper. She can also be found behind the decks at many of the UK soul weekenders including Blackpool, Whitby and Weston super Mare etc plus a guest DJ the length and breath of the UK. Well known for her unique dance style, not surprisingly then she was a dance competition winner at Prestatyn Soul Weekender.’
Andy Lewis started to DJ at university in the late 1980’s, when he discovered that people were just as excited about the strange old 60’s records he was playing as they were about contemporary tunes. On his return to London, he got a guest spot at Wendy May's Locomotion. This legendary London night out gave Andy his first big break, and his collection of weird and wonderful soul and funk tunes were the perfect compliment to the Motown, Stax, Atlantic and Philly grooves that gave this long-running event its timeless flavour, immortalized by celebrated author Nick Hornby in his book 31 Songs. Locomotion moved to North London's Camden Town in 1993, and quickly established itself as the favourite Friday night post-pub hangout of the emerging "Camden Scene".
Later that year, Andy took his Locomotion fans to a new Saturday night happening in a sweaty room above a Camden Town pub. This event was christened ‘Blow Up’ by its regulars; the name stuck and its fame spread. Before long the Laurel Tree pub was filled to overflowing every Saturday, with hundreds of people queuing for hours to enjoy the mixture of sixties dance 45's, British pop and a strange but compelling mixture of film soundtracks, funky jazz and instrumental music that became known as ‘Loungecore’ or ‘Easy Listening‘.
Among the people lucky enough to get in were various members of the band Blur, who were so inspired by the mixture of music that they took Andy on the road with them as support DJ on their era-defining Parklife tour. Now that ‘Blow Up’ was hitting the headlines in the national press, it became inevitable that it would have to move from its dangerously cramped Camden location, and move it did- to one of the most famous nightclubs in London, The Wag. In the five years it was there, ‘Blow Up’ went from strength to strength, and in spite of the closure of The Wag in 2001 is still going over ten years after it started.
Andy’s enthusiasm and expertise in his chosen musical field came to the attention of the wider media. He contributed articles for Record Collector and Mojo magazines, and was regularly a special guest on London radio station XFM. In 2001, Andy was approached by internet broadcaster www.soul24-7.com and became one of their most popular presenters. His regular Thursday morning show “The Andy Lewis Indulgence” secured for him a truly global audience, and achieved cult status amongst the oil workers of Kazakhstan. Offers of work started coming in from all over the world; Andy found himself jetting off to gigs in Japan, Austria, Italy, Sweden, Spain and Germany.
In 2002 he compiled an album of some of his favourite sounds for Sanctuary Records, “Dig The Slowness”. This record launched their Discotheque imprint, and was one of the first “all back to mine”-style compilations. Andy has continued to trawl through Sanctuary’s substantial archive ever since, presenting a retrospective of arranger and producer John Schroeder, “Soul Coaxing” and compiling an offbeat Petula Clark compilation, “Feelin’ Groovy”.
In spite of his growing fame as a DJ, Andy's first love has always been making music, as bass player for one of the original Brit Pop pioneers Pimlico, and later for notorious Northern Soul-sampling indie scene stalwarts Spearmint. Although it was his DJ'ing exploits that initially brought him to the attention of Acid Jazz records, a selection of songs that he had written earned him the chance to record a track for one of the label's famous Totally Wired series. The critical acclaim afforded this track - “After The Party Was Over” - and the release of the Hammond-led instrumental “One By One” as a 45 led to the birth of an ambitious album concept.
Andy’s intention was create an album that contained all his various musical influences, from sixties Swinging London pop to contemporary breakbeat-driven dance grooves. He wanted a sound that was influenced by being both a musician and a DJ; one that gave him a chance to work with some of his favourite musicians and vocalists. Slowly but surely he tracked down the people he wanted and assembled the equipment he needed.
The album "Billion Pound Project" was released in September 2005. Featuring an impressive array of guest vocalists including soul legends Keni Burke and Bettye Lavette, ex-Action man Reg King, infamous John’s Children front man Andy Ellison and one-time Soul Hooligan Dave Jay, it was a critical and a commercial success, selling around 10,000 copies worldwide. The album's success spurred Andy on to begin work on a follow-up. 2006 was spent writing and recording new material.
One of the fans of “Billion Pound Project” was Paul Weller, who was impressed enough to offer the services of both his studio and his incredible voice. He and Andy co-wrote "Are You Trying To Be Lonely?" and it became first choice to be released as a single from Andy's new album, "You Should Be Hearing Something Now!" . The single was released on September 10th 2007, and was a top 40 hit. The album followed a month later in October 2007.
Since then, Andy's played on Paul Weller's acclaimed albums "22 Dreams" and " Wake Up The Nation". He's toured extensively as part of Weller's live band, travelling to Japan, Australia, America, Canada and throughout Europe and the UK. Because of his touring commitments, a follow-up to "You Should Be Hearing Something Now!" has been a while in coming. All this changed in 2011...
In April 2011, "A Good Soul In The Good Times" will be released as a single. Featuring Jess Roberts on vocals, it'll be the first glimpse of material from Andy's new album "South Herts Symphony", due for release in the summer of 2011.
But... before then, Andy's releasing a Mini Album. Called simply "41", it features seven songs written and recorded during the last fortnight o 2010. As Andy says...“In the space between getting home from my touring duties with Paul Weller in mid-December and the end of 2010, I found myself gifted with a partularly hyperactive musical imagination. New musical ideas and lyrics were coming to me on an almost daily basis. I set myself a bit of a challenge to see how many of them I could turn into complete songs before the year was out. I expected to finish about one or two, and put the others on the back burner, maybe forever. I ended up finishing seven.”
"41" was available on iTunes as a download from February 7th 2011, and will be released on Acid Jazz records in physical form . For news of the physical release date, why not follow Andy Lewis on Twitter, or check out his MySpace or Facebook profiles.’
‘Raphi was born in Brussels but lived for 15 years in Perpignan from where he co-organised several Scooter Rallies, Northern Soul Weekenders and parties. His passion for Reggae and Northern Soul made him co-founder of "Lava Records" label and the club "Canigó Soul Casino". Always on the lookout to locate new black music gems this renowned euro DJ is eager to make us enjoy of his brilliant Early Reggae and Northern Soul set. Graphic designer, he often creates 6T's and 7T's influenced designs for gigs, trad. ska/reggae/soul groups and other people interested in vintage inspiration. Reggae and Soul 45's collector, he played in several clubs in France, Belgium, North England, Switzerland, Germany and Catalonia. As well as presenting ska shows on Brussels fm he played for the first parts of reggae/ska concerts such for The Skatalites, The Moon Invaders, The Impalers /The Caroloregians. His current top ten is:
1: "Everybody's got to loose someone sometimes" The Chancellors, 2: "I Don't Have To Worry" The Quotations, 3: "I've Been Hurt By Love" Geno Washington, 4: "You And Me" Solaris, 5: "I'm So Glad You're Mine" Georges Perkins, 6: "Go" Rudies-Fanatics, 7: "Gonna Keep On Trying Till I Win Your Love" Dave&Ansell Collins, 8: "Turning Point" Slim Smith, 9: "Wonder Of Love" the Inspirations, 10:"Melody Life" Marcia Griffiths.