Guide to British Music of the 1960s

April 2003

CD Review

The Mod Generation


The Mod Generation is one of a series of CDs that accompanies a recent ITV television series, SOUL, that looked at youth movements in London over the years. The compilation is a who's who of Mod acts from the 1960s, some of which are better known than others. There is a mix of better-known tracks alongside more obscure but highly worthwhile items.

The Action's I'll Keep on Holding On has been mentioned in Making Time before. the Action was one of the top live acts but never matched this success on record. The song is a cover of the Marvelletes' track and is a powerful opener for any album. Les Fleurs de Lys' Circles is another cover version that has become an uncharted Mod classic. Jimmy James & the Vagabonds and Geno Washington & the Ran Jam Band were also major Mod live acts that did not match this success on their records. Geno Washington though did make number one by virtue of Dexys Midnight Runners' tribute!

Get Yourself Together saw light on the Small Faces' first Immediate album. This remains one of the band's most popular tracks today and was even covered by the Jam in the early 1980s. Paul Weller is known to be a fan of this song and asked keyboard player Ian McLagan about it. However, Mac could remember nothing about it. ironically, Mac now features the song in his own set!

I Need You is a Kinks' b-side to Set Me Free that features trademark chopping guitar and feedback. While the a-side is more of a ballad, I Need You is more uptempo with the initial feedback reminiscent of I Feel Fine

David Bowie or Davy Jones produced a stream of great singles in the 1960s without making much of a dent on the charts. Can't Help Thinking About Me is a personal favourite but I Dig Everything hits the Mod spot. The Spectres are also of interest for their later career. The band included Mike (Francis) Rossi, Alan Lancaster and John Coghlan and a certain Rick Parfitt later joined. Neighbour Neighbour is an r&b standard and after a flirtation with psychedelic sounds, they discovered three chords and Status Quo never looked back. 

PP Arnold's If You Know What I Mean sees the Queen of Immediate in her prime belting out the b-side to The Time has Come, her third single.

The Smoke and the Sorrows are two bands who produced classic singles while the Poets from Glasgow released a few great singles including the cover of Baby Don't You Do It. 

Other artists included here are more obscure today but have been given a new lease of life with the advent of CDs and more. 

Release Date: 2003

Essential Tracks:

  • I'll Keep On Holding On
  • Circles
  • I Need You

Track Listing:

  1. I'll Keep on Holding On- The Action
  2. Get Yourself Together- The Small Faces
  3. Jump & Dance- The Carnaby
  4. I Need You- The Kinks
  5. I'm Your Witchdoctor- John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers
  6. Treat Her Good- Chris Farlowe
  7. Michael (the Lover)- Geno Washington & the Ram Jam band
  8. This Heart of Mine- Jimmy James & the Vagabonds
  9. If You See What I Mean- PP Arnold
  10. Emergency 999- Alan Bown Set
  11. I Dig Everything- David Bowie
  12. We Can Take It- The Smoke
  13. Circles- Les Fleurs de Lys
  14. We Didn't Kiss We Didn't Love But Now We Do- The Clique
  15. Baby Don't You Do It- The Poets
  16. You've Got What I Want- The Sorrows
  17. Neighbour, Neighbour- The Spectres
  18. Soul Sauce- Timebox


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