on 22 October 2002
First of all this CD. The music is brilliant and it is way too cheap! I can buy this after working for half an hour now, in the late 60's it was a week's wages to get one of these 45's, if you could! So buy it now, I will lend you the money!
I was there, still got the membership card, and what's worse I remember them all! So, I am biased but I guess we all are.
Hard to comment on the tracks as most are excellent and will be known by nearly all prospective buyers, even though they are a wide range of styles, not all foot stompers for the boys. I distinctly remember asking the DJ (who was always trapped behind a designer solitary confinement cell!) what he had played (we took notes and then tried to buy them) almost every time a new one was played.
These come from the era when Manchester was "cool" for the first time. It was NOT Northern Soul at the time; it was soul music for dancing at clubs to. The selection here seem to reflect the music during 1968 and 1969, the first two years that the Wheel" was in Whitworth Street. The tracks here are characterised by not being the typical earlier "mod" often Motown numbers that were the norm to dance too (Marvelettes, Velvelettes, Martha, Gladys, early Marvin, Monitors, Contours, Isley Brothers etc.) but faster dance tracks from typically rather less commercially viable artists. It also, interestingly, included music not just from black Americans (who were all so cool we all wanted to be black!) but also from white artists (Mitch Ryder, Travis Wammack etc.)
Tracks that typify the "Wheel" at that time include: Willie Mitchell: "That Driving Beat", Bob Brady & the Con Chords: "Everybody's going to the Love In", Dynatones: "The Fife Piper" and my two favourites: Roscoe Robinson: "That's enough" and Darrel Banks (what a voice!) with "Open the door to your heart". But I guess I am being picky, the point of this is that it is a classic mix of music from the time and the venue, so it works as a whole as well as in parts.
What we need now is "The Wheel Diet", you trying dancing to these tracks for half an hour! The pounds (sorry I suppose it is kilograms now!) will pour off! Great stuff not just nostalgia. Without these there would not have been the "Casino" and the "Torch". A privilege to have been there at the time. Buy it, close the curtains, start dancing and have FUN!