Saturday, February 4, 2017
On March 3rd, DJ Jonathan Toubin will celebrate the tenth anniversary of the world’s most popular and prolific soul party, New York Night Train's Soul Clap and Dance-Off.
For the first time, Toubin turns the typical DJ night on its head, and won't spin any records. Instead, New York Night Train’s soul proprietor will fly in his favorite soul singers from around the world to perform their original hits for an all live music dance party. The fast-paced review setting will be backed by Nick Waterhouse and the Tarots. The performers will be flown in for the night only, some of whom have not performed in New York City for years, including Ural Thomas whose last performance in the city took place in 1971 at the Apollo Theater.
In addition to this unprecedented live bill of legends, the Soul Clap and Dance-Off as usual includes the New York Night Train Shadow Dancers, a dance contest with a $500 Prize, determined by a distinguished panel of judges. The contestants will have the unique chance to dance to a band whose records Toubin often plays at the contest, Joe Bataan and his orchestra, performing live.
The celebration will take place at Warsaw (261 Driggs Ave) in Brooklyn, across the street from Enid’s, the venue where the legendary party debuted on a cold March night in 2007. Tickets are $30 US advance and available right here.
With the help of celebrated music archivist/impressario/DJ Todd Abramson, Nick Waterhouse and the Ponderosa Stomp Foundation, Toubin assembled an unbelievable mix of legendary entertainers across soul subgenres, eras, and geographic locations:
Initially known outside of soul circles for the Rolling Stones’ cover of her “Time Is On My Side” and Otis Redding’s version of her “Ruler of My Heart” (“Pain In My Heart”), the Grammy-winning “Soul Queen of New Orleans” has prolifically recorded and released stellar music for six decades and is universally acclaimed as one of the genre’s paramount voices. Her hits “Anyone Who Knows What Love Is,” “Breakaway,” and “It’s Raining” have had a huge resurgence in recent years and are now a bigger part of popular culture than ever.
The dynamic showman Archie Bell will forever be remembered for topping the charts in 1968 with his all-time get-down classic “Tighten Up” and the follow up all-time floor fillers “(There’s Gonna Be) A Showdown” and “I Can’t Stop Dancing.”
Combining doo wop, soul, salsa, and the a variety of spicy sonic influences, Spanish Harlem’s own “King of New York” went from being one of the most unique and important figures in the latin soul to experimenting with orchestral funk, rap, and world rhythms. Bataan will bring along his razor sharp orchestra to play their fiery canonical 1960s boogaloos during the contest.
Twenty-year-old gospel songbird Maxine Brown busted the pop charts open in 1961 with her self-penned secular mega-hit “All In My Mind”. Over the next decade Brown became one of soul music’s most consistent artists – hitting the R&B charts both alone and as a part of a duo with Chuck Jackson.
Originally part of the groundbreaking west coast doo wop group The Flairs (with Richard Berry), the 17-year old baritone was signed by Leiber and Stoller to a solo contract, helping him to quickly wax a slew of classics including the original recordings of much covered-standards like “Mary Lou” and “I Smell A Rat.” Young Jessie wound up in The Coasters (hear him on "Searchin'" and "Young Blood") and then went on to record a number of the finest and most coveted early soul 45s of all time.
Starting out as a teen doo-wopper in The Hearts/Jaynetts, Jeanette “Baby” Washington went on to record a slew of R&B hits from the rockin’ 1950s to the sexy 1970s. A major influence on Dusty Springfield, who recorded "That's How Heartaches Are Made" and "I Can't Wait Until I See My Baby's Face," Washington’s 1960s Sue Records classics have become big hits in the contemporary Northern Soul, Popcorn, and Rhythm and Blues dance party scenes.
Portland, OR’s Ural Thomas, whose name in music was kept alive by soul heavies, collectors, and DJs playing his 60s singles like “Pain Is The Name of Your Game” and “Can You Dig It,” recently made a huge come back with an LP on Light In The Attic and full capacity live shows, up and down the West Coast. This underdog soul hero is excited to play his first New York gig since The Apollo in 1971.
NYC’s own Lonely Planet Boy broke into music as the leader of proto-punk gods The New York Dolls. He has had a prolific “Funky But Chic” solo career, became an international pop and film star as Buster Poindexter, and led the old weird American supergroup The Harry Smiths. For decades - from the Dolls’ cover of Archie Bell’s “There’s Gonna Be A Showdown” to his solo version of The Four Tops’ “Reach Out (I’ll Be There),” and to Buster Poindexter’s take on Freddie Scott’s “Are You Lonely for Me Baby” - Johansen has knocked ‘em all dead with his soulful originals and unique interpretations of standards.
Canadian Berliner King Khan is best known for his flamboyant showmanship as the leader of nine-piece psychedelic soul combo King Khan and The Shrines. “Black Snake” also remains busy with an eclectic variety of important musical projects like raw rootsy rockers King Khan and the BBQ, garage punks Almighty Defenders, and Bollywood revisionists Tandoori Knights. Last year saw King Khan release a series of funky soul singles recorded for the soundtrack to the black power The Defenders documentary.
Nick Waterhouse and the Tarots
Since taking the underground rhythm and blues scene by storm with his self-released 2010 single “Some Place,” Nick Waterhouse has gone on to become one of the busiest and most distinctive forces in the 21st Century Neo-Soul scene. Not only does he prolifically tours and records his own music, he also produced garage rockers The Allah-Las, latin soul combo The Boogaloo Assassins, and the classic soul man Ural Thomas, while also collaborating with Jon Batiste and Leon Bridges. IN addition to playing his own material during this special night, Nick will lead the backing band including his pianist Brooklyn Rhythm’s own J.B. Flatt, who has backed dozens of contemporary soul artists at the Dig Deeper party and elsewhere.