© 2011 Dani Cantó MerseyBeat Story Dani Canto

As Seen On Dresslab: The Forgotten Beat

The Forgotten Beat

Most people think that when I chose Liverpool it was because of the Beatles. Actually people use to think there’s nothing else than the Beatles in this city, and officially it’s as sad as that. The truth as I quite admire the so-called MerseyBeat scene. The scene where the Beatles grew up (first as a skiffle band) to develop into a legend. But not only the Fab Four.

During a small period on the sixties, from ’60 to ’65, there were about 500 bands (from yeye to soul) playing in some of the almost 500 venues all over the Merseyside. Most of them where cover bands, some of them even reached national fame and quite a few got nr.1 records. But, what’s left of that scene? The Cavern.

And it stands there as a piece of story but also as a big souvenir. It’s not even the original venue (though it shares 80% with the original) but it’s the perfect excuse for the Disneylandia that Liverpool became to Beatlemaniacs all over the world. It’s what they’re known for.

Anyway, angry and jealous I decided to look on the map for some other venues. Places where Cilla Black, Gerry & the Peacemakers, The Undertakers, The Chants or The Searchers may have started playing or may have had a residence playing covers twice a week. The thing is, did the Beatles played on that venue? If not, it’s hard to find it on a map. Most of the places where destroyed on a city that searched for economic stability and needed to scape from the docks economy.

Then I decided to grab my camera, ask the locals, search the forums and try to find them. No matter what was there now, I wanted to portrait the foundations of a sound. The music of an era. The Forgotten Beat.

The project stills going and it will for some months, but the good people of Dresslab trusted my instinct and decided to run a small piece with 16 pictures of the ongoing project. It was published at the very end of 2010 but until now I didn’t have the chance to openly talk about it.

Hope you enjoy it.

The Forgotten Beat

Ps: note that for the first time I ignored the digital for a story (risky). Instead I shot four rolls using a Minox 35 (color) and a Canon AE-1 (color & B/W) with a 28mm 2.8 and a 50mm 1.8. Pics published have no retouch or crop.

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