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Ian Vince

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Ian Vince Soul Jar Sunday 10am-Midday

Hi everyone and thanks for taking five minutes to read my profile. It basically consists of acknowledging my influences and a brief story of an Essex soulboy to date. I really appreciate being able to share a few lines with you and I’m sure most will relate to my memories somewhere.

 

My direction for all that is Soul, Funk and Jazz was installed at an early age. My late father, Derek Vince, was the founding influence. I grew up on a council estate in Kelvedon, Essex with the sounds of 50’s/60’s American Doo-Wop, R & B to Rock and Roll being played daily. I also learned from my dad how to pick out the rarer recordings in whatever genre you liked, listen to a lot of radio and read reviews as he progressed to become quite a connoisseur of Country and Western before he was forty. I often think what he would of made of my love for all that is Soul and Jazz music today.

Quite often my parents would go to gigs by an obscure Country musician from the southern United States performing one offs in Chelmsford or London in front of 100 people. This installed my belief that the small venues will always be the best way to enjoy live music. These American sounds led me to the path of 60’s Soul, and Motown. From the age of 15, I loved the music and smart look of Paul Weller. This also introduced me to Jazz so becoming a Mod and borrowing some of my Dads cardigans was the doorway to Northern Soul Alldayer/Nighters, 60’s Jazz Hammond sounds and Vespas. Being born and growing up where I was, the natural spin off is that I was destined to be an Essex Soulboy.

 

My DJing career started in a shed at a mates party playing 60’s Mod singles on a single turntable. Because I didn’t have many records some got played 3 or 4 times and I also utilised some of my parents sevens while everyone else was in the house and garden getting drunk. The music ranged from The Who to Jackie Wilson, The Jam and even Manfred Mann. I couldn’t even see anyone else from inside the shed and no-one wanted to play the music, so I did it to prevent someone putting on 80’s chart music because I had no passion for it. In the early eighties, I knew only Top of The Pops and the Sunday Top 40 before I discovered proper Rare groove on London radio shows from the likes of Robbie Vincent, Pete Young, Jeff Young, Chris Phillips and newer soul sounds in Essex from John Leech. I guess the soul snobbery had already started for me because mainstream ‘pop’ music just didn’t interest me, despite many soul artists hitting the Top 10 main charts, I still picked these out from the rest when we used to tape it on a Sunday!.

The speakers of my DJ booth were connected through the shed window with the turntable on a pasting table. We were 16 and it is with these mates (Mark, Sean and Craig), we began to roadie for a couple of local DJs. One, Tony Stewart, was an Essex based Black Caribbean with strong musical roots. In fact, Tony was offered a radio show in the early licencing days on KISS FM in London, although he turned it down.

What an influence he was to me and others, he had the chat and knew the music, playing Gil Scott Heron, Lonnie Liston Smith, Teddy, Luther, Whispers, Fatback, Maze, James Brown and more. All in the middle of pub/venues in and around Maldon and Chelmsford. He held residencies in two local venues on a Thursday, Friday and Sunday, playing everything Soul, Jazz and Jazz Funk. We carried his kit and huge vinyl boxes everywhere, often sitting on the speakers in the back of a transit van clinging on for dear life so we didn’t get squashed going round the bends on the Essex roads. It is now I realise how I discovered wider Black music, looking through those boxes of hundreds of sevens and making it an obsession, right there. It was also at that point I discovered real vinyl record shops, Crazybeat, Soul Brother and Adrian’s to name a few. I still visit the same ones because they all still exist. Like today, it can be an expensive hobby!!.

 

Through this period my passion grew and I attended the Essex Club circuit. Then, Soul nights would be held on separate nights and the whole atmosphere changed on these nights at clubs like Dukes, TOTS or Zero 6. Rare groove was slowing and that thing called ‘Acid House’ was emerging, something else I had no passion for. I just found Rare Groove and Jazz Funk took you away, there was a feeling of togetherness and there were real dancers then. It was a dancer that became another influence towards the late 80’s. My work colleague, Wayne Harper lent me a cassette and I lent him one. I recognised him from the club circuit and we quickly realised that our music tastes matched. For me, Wayne was simply one of the best white dancers on the circuit and remains so to this day. Very much a Jazz dancer and was a regular at The Goldmine, The Hadleigh Suite, Southport, Hanningfield Windmill,  Electric Ballroom, Lacy Lady and Caister.

It was his invite to the last days of The Goldmine that cemented it for me. At that very point I found Chris Hill, Gary Dennis, Snowboy, Tom Holland, Richard Searling, Simon Dunsmore, Gilles Peterson, Jez Nelson, Dr Bob Jones, Kevin Beadle, Grumpy Brown, Colin Curtis, Ian Levine, Frostie, Sylvester, Nick Hozier, Bob Masters , Patrick Forge, Paul Collins and the like. We also attended The Lacy Lady in Ilford, SAKS Wine Bar in Leigh on Sea, Hanningfield Windmill, Southport Soul Weekender and the infamous Sunday Afternoon Jazz dance sessions at Dingwalls in Camden. Venues so packed where sweat literally ran from the walls, you changed your T shirt three times and the music blew you away tune after tune after tune.

 

After occasionally DJing at private functions I found I was being asked more and more to play the music I love. In the last few years I started to attend weekenders like Caister again with my better half Allison who puts up with my obsession and supports me greatly in it all.

About 10 years ago I began a morning Soul and Jazz show on my local Hospital Radio station purely as a hobby. From there I answered a call for presenters from Dave Burton on Soulconnexion radio. This led to 3 slots at Caister on the radio. I was initially offered a daytime slot by Dave and appreciate the faith he had in me. I have expanded out to other radio projects since and also enjoy playing out too. I now have the scope for an opening again on Soulconnexion Radio. So delighted to be back with you. Welcome to THE SOUL JAR!!. 

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