Soul City Records
started life in late 1966 as a small record shop in Deptford High Street, South London, run by Dave Godin, David Nathan and Robert Blackmore. It specialized in selling American R & B and Soul records. It soon out grew the shop in Deptford and moved up town to 17 Monmouth Street, London, W.C.2.
Advertised as Britain's only 100% American Soul and R & B record store.
On 9 March 1968, the first release on Soul City records, SC 101 Don Gardener & Dee Dee Ford, "Don't You Worry/I'm Coming Home To Stay" was issued. During the next two years, 19 singles were issued, with some very collectable sounds on a UK soul label.
On each SOUL CITY record label is the legend "Soul as deep as you like... and then some".
The records were initially distributed by Island and then Philips when they took over Island
distribution. David Nathan and Robert Blackmore, were co-partners in Soul City records.
"CBS were going to distribute, but we went bust before we could issue the first single under their banner, which would have been the Chris Jackson single. The idea to have records pressed on blue vinyl was for the "Deep Soul" label - a venture (labour of love!) financed by the money we made from the Gene Chandler hit. At that time though, coloured vinyl was only available in the USA, so unfortunately, we had to stick to conventional black. I still think blue and the "Deep Soul" label and bag would have looked great together!". Said Dave Godin many years later.
Popular singles included Gene Chandler's "Nothing can stop me", it reached No 41 in the charts. Original versions were also issued, "Go Now" by Bessie Banks, "It's all over now" by The Valentinos. The cover version (Go Now) by the Moody Blues and (It's All Over Now) by the Rolling Stones, did not capture the excitement or raw feel that can only come from original soul music. The Chicago Okeh record label, and it's Northern soul fans were catered for with "Right Track" by Billy Butler and "The Beat" by Major Lance. Then there were also the Soul City LP's issued between 1969/70.
Souls City records was a great loss to soul fans when it closed, it was the only true specialist soul
shop at that time. I spent many a happy Saturday afternoon listening to records being played by
Dave Godin, who had a remarkable knack of picking out records, that he knew we would enjoy.
It's nice to see that he is still able to do the same thing for soul fans today. His CD compilation's on Kent Records Dave Godin's Deep Soul Treasures Taken From The Vaults... is a must, there are 4 volumes, the last Vol. 4 issued September 2004.
Look out for Birth Of Soul CD on Kent 123, Sanctified Soul (deep soul) on Kent 180, Kent Cellar of Soul on Kent 198 also with excellent sleeve notes by Dave Godin
Dave Godin, having been ill for some time, died peacefully in his sleep on Friday October 15th 2004. He was 68 years old. He will be remembered for his enthusiasm for soul music, and the inspiration he gave others. He tirelessly worked to have material issued in the UK that would other wise have remained obscure, and it was he who first coined the term 'Northern Soul'. His work with Motown led to the creation of the UK Tamla Motown label, and the appreciation society for the above being formed. He was also a gifted writer and music journalist, most famously with his regular column in Blues & Soul.
He will be sadly missed by all. R.I.P. Soul Brother...