Clubland Beat

The Oldham Club Scene  Entertainers

As the sixties began to draw to a close, musical taste was widening and many bands were either changing their style and going "progressive/heavy/bluesy/jazzy" or moving into the cabaret clubs, where live music was still popular. In my own experience, the soul scene was changing and moving from the teen clubs and into the Princess and Domino style clubs.

This was due in part to the natural progression of social life - youth club to dance hall to licenced premises. Twenty year olds, even then, aspired to the odd pint and, as many of the clubs were still alcohol free, the aging clubber found it easy to move into an environment where booze was available. Another factor, perhaps, was that the changing styles of popular music in the club scene alienated many, who found the entertainment style of the cabaret clubs more suiting their musical taste.

A third and important reason was the Manchester Act of 1965, which was brought in to close down a lot of the "teen" clubs in Manchester - whose premises and management were thought to be of inadequate standard.

Whatever the reason, the cabaret scene was home to many Manchester bands. There was plenty of work both locally and out of town - many bands working nine shows a week in the North East. The bands were well paid, worked well and over long periods but didn't get the glamour image that more "pop" orientated bands achieved.

Bands that stand out in the memory include Sweet Chariot, Dougie James, Reg Coates Combo, Palm Springs and the Royal Variety Showband.

24 December 1969
Advertised as "The gayest, greatest show in town" (times change)

Cabaret Venues

Just a list of some of the clubs of the time

Lonsdale Club    
Domino Club Grey Mare Lane, Openshaw  
Princess Club Barlow Moor Road, Chorlton  
Georgian Club Devonshire St, Broughton  
Embassy Club    
Sinatras Oldham Road, Failsworth  
Arthur Fox Revue Bar George Street, Manchester  
Poco-Poco Theatre Club Manchester Road, Stockport  
Riverboat Club Gt Cheetham Street, Broughton  
Southern Sporting Club Birch Street, Gorton  
Club Del Sol Bootle Street, Deansgate  
The Warren Hollingworth Road, Bredbury  
Silver Moon Club Dantzic Place, Manchester  
Mr Smiths    
Wishing Well Club Station Road, Swinton  
Jay and Jay Club Stanley Grove, Longsight  
Western Bar Dale Street, Piccadilly  
Palladium Club Collyhurst Street, Manchester 9  
Palace Theatre Club Ashton Lane, Sale  
Bury Palace Theatre Club Garden Street, Bury  
Wilton Club New Cannon Street, Manchester  
Talk of the North Eccles  
College Theatre Club Coupland Street, Ardwick  
Oceans 11 Dickenson Road, Rusholme ex Birch Park Palace
Golden Garter Wythenshawe  
Offerton Palace    
Fagins Oxford Street ex Rowntrees Seen and Takis
Levenshulme Sporting Club    
Northern Sporting Club    
Devonshire Sporting Club    
Broadway Club Failsworth  

Off the top of my head (may remember more later) but we worked (The Deltones Casteleton Rochdale) for the Moss Brothers quite a lot as resident band. We were told (not sure how true it was) that when we took over the residency at The Levenshulme Sporting Club the previous resident band was The Hollies. Anyway we worked at most of the Manchester clubs and I remember these in addition to those you already have:

The Levenshulme Sporting Club
The Northern Sporting Club
The Devonshire Sporting Club

Kieron Connell

Thanks Kieran, now added.



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