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By Dean Rudland

The mod is an important figure in the world of youth cults. Originally emerging from darkened Soho basements of the late 1950s, they have continued to reappear to such an extent that they are now a permanent fixture on the cultural landscape. In 2012 mod culture could claim the winner of the Tour De France and the leading actor in one of the year’s highest profile films. While the music associated with mod is now wide and varied, you have to look back to its roots as a club culture to see where its heart lies.

The original mod protagonists could be found listening to the sharpest late 50s jazzNew York could provide, and we pay tribute to this mythical beast with our “Mod Jazz” series, which now runs to seven volumes, each one full to the brim with a bluesy jazzy mixture heated up with a touch of Latin.

The mods then moved on to American soul and R&B. These sounds were initially brought to them by DJs such as Roger Eagle and Guy Stevens and then by sharp record labels – usually the UK versions of American greats such as Chess or Atlantic, but also Guy Stevens’ British Sue logo.

Mods went away for a few years but their legacy lingered on in Northern Soul and southern clubbing, before a revival based around the Jam and Quadrophenia led to a new generation of mohair-clad lovers of jazz, R&B and soul. It is this legacy that is touched on in compilations such as “Looking Good” and our “New Breed R&B” series.

The selection here would provide you with the backbone of a very good mod collection. 

Selected releases