Blogs all over the web were lighting up over the latest Diplo creation that came out at the beginning of the month. The Major Lazer/La Roux mixtape was, I think we can conclude, a bit of a limp fish. Only really two or three songs on it were worth the hype, although that may still be a bit generous… I think the idea is good though. As a bit of a fan of Island music, anything that makes a song a little more summery is generally going to get at least a listen from me. So let’s consider Reggae’s big brother. Ska music is something that most people would often consider the territory of 14 year old kids with long hair who like running into each other at gigs, but it doesn’t have to be. It’s been around longer than Reggae and has played a part in both the Island and British music scenes since the early ’60’s. The constant upbeat, trumpets, organs, and generally dancey feel make it one of the most expressive and fun genres to listen to. It is impossible to keep your feet still when it’s on.
Here are a few examples of how Ska has developed, from the first wave of Jazz and Blues influenced songs, through to the second wave that took the British Mod culture by storm, better known as 2 Tone. This progressed to the punk tinged third wave that was popular in the ’90’s in the States and that a lot of people would probably associate with Ska these days. Finally I’m throwing in a gem that I can’t stop listening to. For me summer started when I found this tune in February!