Open the Door to – Information


Here’s one of the great singles:

Mr Tench has sent me the story (Independent) of how an original single has sold for £14,500, the article’s headline describing it as a “Holy Grail Northern Soul single”

But it’s not a “Northern Soul single is it? Because that would place it in the late 1960s or early 1970s

Mr Tench suggests that it was one of Mr Greedy’s favourite Birdcage records (see Comment and below) which means it was being played in Pompey in the mid 1960s. Well that Mr Greedy is certainly a man of good taste. In my first ‘Pompey Pop’ book called Almost (Feb 1998) I wrote this passage:

“The Birdcage had its own DJ – a stylish somewhat studious looking guy called Brady … he could often be seen placing orders in Weston Hart’s. Imagine such a life, where the big worry was whether you could get a copy of “Incense” or “Open the Door to Your Heart” before this week’s big show. Imagine. Courtesy of Brady I heard just about everything in the soul and R&B world …”

I got a couple of things wrong in that passage. I called him Pete Brady whereas he was Pete ‘Brady’ Boardman and I thought he was from Brighton like Rikki Farr and Robin Beste. But I got the music right and it’s interesting that the first two record titles I mentioned included a ‘Northern Soul’ track before Northern Soul existed. I’ve a feeling that Phil Freeman used to sing it too?

Northen Soul is OK if that’s what you like. But Southern Soul came first in the UK and is (comparatively) ignored. We’re here of course to put the record straight. Just walk right on in …

PS: Mr Greedy reports in the Comment that his real favourite is this – another cracker



Author: pompeypop

University lecturer, longtime local musician and recently historian of popular music - especially in and around Portsmouth. My blog is entirely about that topic

2 thoughts on “Open the Door to – Information

  1. I love this song but my all time favourite from that time was the Tony Clarke track’The Entertainer’which is also now labelled as Norther Soul !
    I think this is because the whole ethos of Mod was constant change although what it evolved into eventually wasn’t exactly to my taste!
    Whereas the flag bearers for this music are the Northern Soul movement who have stuck with it for 40 plus years
    The only problem I have with that is like other such purist movements eg:Rockabilly or Acoustic Folk their followers aren’t prepared to appreciate other unrelated or for that matter related genres of music

  2. originally on The Revilot label……………………released on Stateside label in 1966………………I put this into the Soul Society play list, and I think I’ve still got the single….today valued at about £35:00……………………great song…………….

    Sad news about Sheffields’ Mr Soul Joe Cocker Another icon of the music scene passes on leaving a pretty impressive legacy…………….R I P Joe…………………..

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