Question: A friend of mine claims to have read that Joy Division once made a
Northern Sould record that was never released. Can you help?
Answer: Incredible as it may sound Joy Division did attempt to record a
version of N.F.Porter's 1971 Northern Soul stomper Keep On Keepin' On in 1978.
Keen to simultaniously cash in on the burgeoning punk and Northern Soul scenes,
Wigan Casino DJ Richard Searling was on the lookout for a punk band to cover
Keep On Keepin' On as a single.
Derek Brandwood, RCA's promotions manager, and a friend of Joy Division
frontman Ian Curtis, suggested the band to Searling. At the time, Joy Division
were desperate to kick-start a career that had been stymied in Manchester by
their earlier flirtations with Nazi imagery.
The band agreed, and spent three days in Manchester's Arrow Studios attempting
to record the track.
Unsurprisingly, the gloom-laden quartet failed miserably - the producer at the
sessions later claimed that they couldn't actually play their instruments - and
the track remained unfinished.
Joy Division Bootlegs
I thought it was well known that the Warsaw bootleg album dates from these
sessions with Searling, and that, while the band did indeed try to cover
'Keep On Keeping On' but it turned into 'Interzone' because they couldn't
manage the subtleties of the original.
Marko UK wrote:
> Have you seen July's Q magazine? Page 62 has a bit where reader's questions are