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The Forgotten Beat « DressLab : clothes+music+art
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The Forgotten Beat

Author: Dani Cantó

Section: MUSIC

Date: 12.2010


‘The Story of Bo Diddley’ by The Animals


The Liverpool prior to the sixties was devastating. A port city where everything depended on the industry and youth had little or no future. Until four hairy kids showed that the POP, written in capital letters, could change all that.

From the Beatles to be young wouldn’t be the same and hundreds of bands from the city wanted to imitate their steps and share their success. The new r’n’r had a name: the Merseybeat.

Half a century later little remains of a scene that changed Britain, for good.

The dusty and green alley next to what was the room Cassanova hides more than a story. Now law firms, during a glorious period the teenagers took the place with their loud guitars.



Mathew Street, birthplace of the Beatles because of its famous Cavern, is today a Disneyland for Beatlemaniacs. Karaoke bars, souvenirs and pints all night long. The rest of the bands have only a brick in the wall to remember them.



‘The Cavern had the Beatles, but The Iron Door had all the rest’ say those who knew the scene. But everything has an end, the famous venue is now a simple plaque on the wall and places like the Hideaway Club, which even gave name to a band of the moment, can’t even be found on the map.



The ‘Blue Angel’ was a pressure cooker at the time, an exclusive after hours where the bands would gather after their concerts and play jam sessions now stands just as a pub. The Everyman Theatre, famous for the concerts that were given in his basement and has no music in your lineup.



Pamela Anderson, as the Genie of the Lamp, is the highlight of a scenario, the Empire Theatre, where the Rolling Stones showed the city what was rock’n’roll. The Neptune Theatre is waiting for a new use after ten years of fighting to reform the fabled room.



Maria stitches up a skirt at its newly opened dressmaking atelier. In 1960, between the same walls, Bill Harry founded the newspaper that marked an era: the Mersey Beat, tired of everyone underestimated the Liverpool r’n’r scene.



Suburbs have rhythm. Any site was valid and so it was the mythical Bingo in Lodge Lane, the Pavilion Theatre, had to expand its stage to host gigs. The menu was quite varied and could range from the Beatles to the beauty contest ‘Legs of the Universe’.



Toxteth was the black neighborhood of Liverpool, the equivalent of the New York’s Harlem. Doo Woop bands and R’n’B born and grew up playing in venues such as the Stanley House, nowadays a community recreation area. Today the area struggles to integrate racial minorities since the Toxteth riots, in 1981, made the luxurious Rialto Ballroom burn to the ground.



In the middle of nowhere. The Ballroom Holyoake gave some of the best concerts and balls on the neighborhood but few remember what was that building for.



Photography and Text. Dani Cantó
Music. The Story of Bo Diddley by The Animals




  1. Dani Cantó » As Seen On Dresslab: The Forgotten Beat / 12.01.11

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