Sources and references

On the longer history of black music in Britain, I have drawn upon:

Lloyd Bradley (2013) Sounds Like London: 100 Years of Black Music in the Capital (London: Serpent’s Tail)

Charlie Gillett (1970) The Sound of the City (London: Sphere)

Paul Oliver (ed.) (1990) Black Music in Britain (Milton Keynes: Open University Press)

Jon Stratton and Nabeel Zuberi (eds.) (2014) Black Popular Music in Britain Since 1945 (Aldershot: Ashgate)


Soul Britannia, a BBC4 documentary: only the first of three appears to be currently available, at:


Relevant work in Cultural Studies to which I refer includes:

Hugh Barker and Yuval Taylor (2007) Faking It: The Quest for Authenticity in Popular Music (London: Faber)

Paul Gilroy (1993) The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double Consciousness (London: Verso)

Dick Hebdige (1979) Subculture: The Meaning of Style (London: Methuen)

Dick Hebdige (1987) Cut n’ Mix: Culture, Identity and Caribbean Music (London: Comedia)

Simon Jones (1988) Black Culture, White Youth (London: Macmillan)


In addition to Hebdige (1987) and Jones, Two Tone is well documented in Daniel Rachel’s Walls Come Tumbling Down (London: Picador, 2016), a compilation oral history of Rock Against Racism, Two Tone and the later Labour Party organization Red Wedge.


There are several memoirs written about Northern Soul, of which the most thoughtful is Stuart Cosgrove’s Young Soul Rebels (Edinburgh: Polygon, 2016). David Nowell’s The History of Northern Soul (London: Portico, 2015) also contains a considerable amount of first-hand recollection from fans. There are also several fan websites and YouTube channels.

Among a great many recent documentaries about Northern Soul, I have found the following particularly useful:

Keep on Burning, director Joe Boy, A2B Media, 2012 (on DVD)

Northern Soul: Keeping the Faith, BBC Culture Show featuring economics journalist Paul Mason, 2013:

Northern Soul: Living for the Weekend BBC4, 2014:

The Way of the Crowd, fan-produced documentary, 2004:

There’s a YouTube playlist containing many more, mostly shorter clips at:

Soul Source is a large website with music, videos, news and discussions about soul broadly defined, but with a primary focus on Northern Soul:


Academic studies I have drawn upon here include:

Lucy Gibson (2014) ‘Nostalgia, symbolic knowledge and generational conflict’, presentation at Rare Records and Raucous Nights: Investigating Northern Soul, symposium at University of Salford, video at

Katie Milestone (1997) ‘The love factory: the sites, practices and media relationships of Northern Soul’, in S. Redhead, D. Wynne and J. O’Connor (eds.) The Clubcultures Reader (Oxford: Blackwell)

Tim Wall (2006) ‘On the floor: the politics of dancing on the Northern Soul scene’, Popular Music 25(3): 431-455

Andrew Wilson (2007) Northern Soul: Music, Drugs and Subcultural Identity (Cullompton, Devon: Willan Publishing)


Tony Palmer’s ATV documentary The Wigan Casino, in the series This England, is available on DVD and on YouTube:

The two fictional films I discuss, Soul Boy (directed by Shimmy Marcus, Ipso Facto Films, 2011) and Northern Soul (directed by Elaine Constantine, Universal, 2014) are both available on DVD.


There is much less on the ‘southern soul’ scene. Aside from Lloyd Bradley’s book, I have also made use of:

Anthony Marks (1990) ‘Young, gifted and black: Afro-American and Afro-Carribean music in Britain 1963-88’, in Paul Oliver (ed.) Black Music in Britain (Milton Keynes: Open University Press)

Robert Strachan (2014) ‘Britfunk: black British popular music, identity and the recording industry in the early 1990s’, in J. Stratton and N. Zuberi (eds.) Black Popular Music in Britain Since 1945 (Aldershot: Ashgate)


I have also relied on a range of websites, videos and short articles, including:

AM/FM, website about the history of pirate radio in the UK:

Caister Soul site:

Emma Brooker (1996) ‘Soul crazy after all these years’, The Independent

Jason Jules (2012) ‘Subjective thoughts on a neglected scene’, Institute of Contemporary Arts, blog post:

Lulu Levay (2002) ‘Never too much’, blog post:

Soul Survivors online magazine:

Soul Weekender, 1998 BBC documentary about Caister:

Superstar DJs: The Funk Mafia, 2000 BBC documentary:

Twentieth Century Box: Funk Music, 1980 documentary for London Weekend Television:


Youth Soul Rebels is available on DVD from the British Film Institute. The BFI also publishes Diary of a Young Soul Rebel by Isaac Julien and Colin MacCabe (1991).