Thursday, February 21, 2013

NYC 2013 Winter/Spring Ska Calendar #5

Friday, February 22, 2013 @ 8:00 pm

A Perfect Mess presents: The Rudie Crew, The Pandemics, The Snails, and Skunk Daze!

620 Van Houten Avenue
Clifton, NJ

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Saturday, February 23, 2013 @ 8:30 pm

Electric Avenue Presents The Reggay Lords (Record Release), The Copacetics

Characters NYC
243 West 54th Street (between Broadway and 8th Avenue--near all subway lines)
$5 cover (all of which goes to the bands)

(Selector Steve spins ska between sets!)

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Saturday, February 23, 2013 at 8:00 pm

The Pietasters, The Snails, No Such Noise

Asbury Lanes
209 4th Avenue
Asbury Park, NJ
$15 advance/$18 day of show
All ages

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Sunday, February 24, 2013 (Doors at 6pm/show at 8pm)


Brooklyn Bowl
61 Wythe Avenue
Brooklyn NY
$10 in advance/$15 day of show

(Fishbone is also doing an acoustic set at 3PM this day at Brooklyn Bowl; tix are $5.)

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Sunday, February 24, 2013

Lost at Sea presents: Sailor Jerry's Final Long Island Show w/The Pandemics, Eli Whitney and the Sound Machine, Life Between Sleep, Wester, Cut the Brakes, Donny Uccellini II of Lost and Adrift, and more!

Even Flo Bar
150 East Main Street
Bay Shore, NY
$10/All ages!

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Monday, February 25, 2013 @ 6:00 pm

Fishbone w/The Pandemics, Disposable, Mumbling Lucy, Thank You Scientist

Stanhope House
45 Main Street
Stanhope, NJ

Contact The Pandemics for $20 tix ($25 at door; $23.50 from Stanhope House online)

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Thursday, February 28, 2013 (6:00 pm doors)

The Toasters, Mrs. Skanatto Unbearable Slackers, No Vertebrae

Stanhope House
45 Main Street
Stanhope, NJ

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Thursday, February 28, 2013 (Doors at 6pm/show at 8pm)

The Skatalites, The Forthrights, and The Attractors

Brooklyn Bowl
61 Wythe Avenue
Brooklyn, NY

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Friday, March 1, 2013 @ 7:00 pm

The Rudie Crew, Bigger Thomas, and FunkFace

Spike Hill
184/186 Bedford Avenue
Brooklyn, NY

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Sunday, March 10, 2013, Performance @ 4:00 pm

First Anniversary of The Man Cave with a Free Concert by Bigger Thomas

Randy Now's Man Cave Garage
15 Park Street
Bordentown, NJ
Free/All ages

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Sunday, March 10, 2013

Japan Tsunami/Earthquake Disaster Anniversary Benefit
w/Uzuhi (PMA infused NYC punk rock), The Pandemics, and more TBA!

Public Assembly
70 North 6th Street
Brooklyn, NY

All ages/$10

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Saturday, March 16, 2013 @ 10:30 pm

Mephiskapheles, The Bluebeats, The Reggay Lords

Mercury Lounge
217 East Houston Street
$15 in advance/$20 day of the show

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Saturday, March 23, 2013 @ 8:30 pm

Electric Avenue presents The Rudie Crew and The Royal Swindle

Characters NYC
243 West 54th Street (between Broadway and 8th Avenue--near all subway lines)
$7 cover (all of which goes to the bands)

(Selector Steve spins ska between sets!)

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Friday, March 29, 2013 @ 6:00 pm

The Pietasters, Big D and The Kid's Table, Sammy Kay, Across the Aisle

The Highline Ballroom
431 West 16th Street
$16.50 in advance/$19 day of the show

All ages

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Saturday, April 22, 2013 @ 7:00 pm

Inspecter 7, Mephiskapheles, Step2Far

Asbury Lanes
209 4th Avenue
Asbury Park, NJ
All ages

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Sunday, April 28, 2013 @ 8:00 pm

Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra, Dave Hillyard and The Rocksteady 7, The Pandemics

Stage 48
605 West 48th Street

(Tickets can be bought from The Pandemics--save on the $4.95 ticket service fee--by emailing them here:

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Monday, February 18, 2013

Ska Crowd Funding: Sammy Kay, Urban Pirate Booty Split 7" Series!

Here are two crowd funding ska projects that are definitely worth supporting with your hard-earned cash (and I'm proud to say that I'm personally backing both of these projects, since I'm always on the hunt for new ska vinyl!).

Sammy Kay and The East Los 3's Love Letters CD/LP 

Hot on the heels of Sammy Kay's debut EP (read The Duff Guide to Ska review here), comes this project to fund his new 15-track album of bluesy, soulful, rocksteady and ska cuts titled Love Letters. Levels of support range from $8 for digital copies of Love Letters and his recently released EP, to $12 for the CD or $15 for black wax, to $30 for both CD and colored vinyl of the album (plus stickers and pins), and higher. Pledge your support here.

Right now, about $2,500 of the $3,200 goal has been raised, with 24 more days to go.

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Urban Pirate Booty Split 7" Series, Volumes 1-5

Urban Pirate Records is hoping to put out a series of split singles from some of the finest ska and early reggae artists playing out right now on the US scene.  What's cool is that you can order singles a la carte (for $7 each) or go for the whole enchilada ($30 for all five singles); higher amounts score you test pressings and other goodies. Pledge your support here.

Volume 1: Crazy Baldhead/Sammy Kay
Volume 2: Dave Hillyard and the Rocksteady 7/Green Room Rockers
Volume 3: Bad Cards "Cap Fit" b/w Reggay Lords "Give It Me My Way" (gold vinyl)
Volume 4: Jesse Wagner "Eye of the Storm" b/w Vic Ruggiero "I Know a Girl" (gold vinyl)
Volume 5: King Django/The Snails

To date, the Urban Pirate Booty Split single series has raised almost exactly half of the $5k needed to fund this project, with 25 more days to go.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Duff Interview: Lord Point of The Reggay Lords

As The Reggay Lords are headlining an upcoming show at our monthly ska/reggae night at Electric Avenue on Saturday, February 23, 2013 (with The Copacetics from Rhode Island opening)--and they have an excellent, new self-titled 10-track digital album out through Whatevski Records for $6--we thought it might be a good idea to check in the band and see what they are all about.

Fortunately, Lord Point was in a beneficent mood and willing to entertain our very humble questions...

The Duff Guide to Ska: Who are the Reggay Lords and where did they come from?

Lord Point: First and foremost, I must mention the courage it must have taken to come to us Lords with questions. This, luckily has caught me in a moment of whimsy and so I will partake of such obvious foolishness, knowing full well that all common people across many lands and shires are aware of the Reggay Lords and continue to rejoice in our existence. This will be catered towards those people and no others.

You find yourself reading this and may have concern for your own soul in bewilderment of this situation, you will most likely be exiting this manuscript of electronic data. 

Now then...

we Lords are myself Lord Point administering our vocal rally...a good Lord always puts himself at the top of the list. 

Lord Nugent, the Honourable Lord Wartell, Lord Donnelly, Lord Baptiste, and our beloved "Time Lord" Lord Wright.

 We hail from the people's shire of Brueklynn, NY


DGTS: Why did you choose to play reggae and how would you describe your sound (I associate lords and ladies with 17th and 18th century harpsichord music)?

LP: As my reader was delivering this second question, myself, the reader, and this Lords scribe all had a fair belly chuckle. It would be harmful to digitally describe the glorious sounds in which the Reggay Lords frolic to simple commoners like one's self. But, in this world of wanton investigation, I will make it known that we have a sound not unlike the roaring of a lion...the crumbling of Babylon...or the shouts of freedom. You owe us nothing for this. It is out of pure love for the common people that we make such an amazing sound. Which, I will segue into question three...

DGTS: Why do you play for the hoi polloi? What do you hope to teach us?

LP: Common people have a choice to be Lords. Unfortunately for them, we have already taken the Reggay Lords slot, so you will find it impossible for any other group to come close to our greatness. However, fear not! There are many other titles that may need to find filling, such as Knitting Lord, or perhaps a Basket Weaving Lord. The world works in depressingly similar ways and so it is left up to us Lords to keep up the mysticism.

DGTS: How does one behave in the presence of musical royalty (for instance, at the upcoming Electric Avenue show)?

LP: Fret not to yourself of calling upon us by our given names and titles of Lords. We understand that beauty is often not easily accepted and it must be horrible for you all to have to look at your own image in the glassy void of a mirror in your humble abodes from a period of gazing at near perfection. People, please try to find the time AFTER our performance and let the musical choir seep into your soul, so you may rest more easily upon knowing the sure dissatifaction that surely must stem from not wearing a Lords wig. As a showing of love to our common people, we will allow commoners to wear their own "lords" wig in the privacy of their homes. Please take no pictures of yourselves, as it will surely bring on a heavy load of anguish to others, and an obvious tease to your own soul and well-being.

DGTS: Are you planning to commit your music to vinyl and/or bytes?

LP: Many trees have been cut, honey bees' nests plundered, squid drained free of all ink, and pressmen and women have been alerted as to the coming of a first Reggay Lords musical release. As that has hundreds of commoners busy at the presses, we are not ones to rest on our laurels and have been quite busy fancying up ye old Proud Lands Studio and making way for even more musical plundering.

DGTS: Any parting words for the common people?


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The Reggay Lords are:

Lord Point - Speaker of the House of Lords
Time Lord - dulcimer and choir
Barrister Lord Philip II - snare, timpani, and choir
Lord Nugent - lute and percussion
Lord Oliver - Marquis de la Basse
Lord Donnelly - lead lute

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Thursday, February 7, 2013

Jamaican Oldies Weekend No. 2: Eric "Monty" Morris and Roy Panton and Yvonne Harrison!

Jump Up Records celebrates the beginning of its 20th Anniversary by creating Jamaican Oldies Productions, a partnership with Mayne Stage to bring vintage Jamaican vocalists to Chicago every three months!

Following on the heels of the smash first Jamaican Oldies Weekend (with Pat Kelly and Stranger Cole) in November, comes the second edition with Eric "Monty" Morris backed by the Soul Radics (and Detroit's finest rocksteady crew 1592 opening) on Day One (Friday, March 1st), and Roy Panton and Yvonne Harrison backed by The Prizefighters (and Pittsburgh's The Pressure opening) on Day Two (Saturday, March 2nd). Limited discount two-day passes are available here.

Day One (Friday, March 1): Eric "Monty" Morris backed by the Soul Radics with 1592 opening

(From the Jump Up Facebook Event page:) Eric "Monty" Morris is considered to be one of the foundational artists of Jamaican ska, starting as the original vocalist for The Skatalites, later duetting with Derrick Morgan, Roy Panton, Patsy, and Prince Buster, and creating a prolific string of early 60s Jamaican chart hits, including "What A Man Doeth," "Money Can't Buy Life," "Into My Garden," "Enna Bella," "Humpty Dumpty," "Sammy Dead," "Solomon A Gundy," "Strongman Sampson," "Oil In My Lamp," and "Penny Reel."

Morris grew up in Kingston's Trench Town and like many singers of the 50s, he could be found at sound system dances and at talent contests including the famous "Vere Johns' Opportunity Hour." In 1961, he recorded a medley of nursery rhymes as "Humpty Dumpty," providing vocals to Drumbago Parks All-Star Band's shuffling beat. The song proved a phenomenal success and is regarded as pivotal in the progress of Jamaican music, introducing the emphasis on the half beat in comparison to earlier local recordings, which simply mirrored American R and B, creating something rhythmically unique: ska.

At the beginning of the Jamaican music industry, singers received a single fee for their studio performance, thus motivated singers like Morris recorded for anyone and everyone who would pay. He voiced for the best producers, including Prince Buster, Byron Lee, Sonia Pottinger, Vincent Edwards, Duke Reid, and Clancy Eccles, and repeatedly topped the Jamaican charts. But it was his massive Byron Lee hits "Sammy Dead Oh" and "Oil in My Lamp" that got him invited to perform at the 1964 New York World's Fair as part of a three-hour "Ska Spectacular" with an esteemed group of musicians that included Millie Small, Jimmy Cliff, Prince Buster, and Byron Lee and The Dragonaires.

Unfortunately, ska failed to capture the imagination of the American public at the time, and the "Wild West" mentality of the Jamaican music business left him short of the financial rewards gained by some of his peers. Even with late 60s productions by Clancy Eccles and Lee Scratch Perry under his belt, Morris did not survive the transition to rocksteady and reggae very well, retiring from the music business in 1970 when he emigrated to the United States.

Time heals all wounds, and since Morris' legend was still strong in the memories of the US Caribbean community, he was tempted back in 1988 to record for the Washington, DC Kibwe label. In 1999, Morris saw a triumphant return to Jamaica after three decades for the Heineken Star Time oldies concert series. Ten years later, Morris' son teamed up with singer/producer Sadiki to create The Living Legends Collection, his first-ever, full-length album bearing re-cuts of his original hits. In 2003, his song "Enna Bella" was used in the soundtrack of the Jim Jarmusch film "Coffee and Cigarettes," plus his songs appeared on many ska and reggae compilations issued during the 80s and 90s ska revival, including Ska Bonanza, Ska After Ska, More Intensified and the Byron Lee and Dragonaires Dynamite Ska collection.

To call Monty an overlooked name in Jamaican music history is truly an understatement; the man is still to receive the true recognition he is due. Jamaican Oldies Productions are extremely proud to present this living legend in Chicago, backed by the Soul Radics from Tennessee. Detroit rocksteady champs 1592 gets the night started right.

DJ Chuck Wren, Triton Soundsystem, Darren Reggae, and Feel The Rhythm DJs spin your favorite Jamaican oldies--strictly on vinyl. All this plus vendors selling original Jamaican vinyl, hand screened concert posters, Jump Up Records' massive merch table and much more.

Ticket info: Tickets on sale soon via Manye Stage website: Tickets are $25. 
This is an 18+ show. There will be a limited amount of two-day passes available for $40, so if you know you're coming for the weekend, snatch these up quick!

There will be a pre-party at Delilah's Chicago on Thursday, Feburary 28th. DJ Chuck Wren opens up his regular night (Chicago's longest-running ska/reggae monthly at 18 years) to an all star cast of
in town and out of town DJs from 9:00 pm to 2:00 am.

Day Two (Saturday, March 2): Roy Panton and Yvonne Harrison backed by The Prizefighters with The Pressure opening

(From the Jump Up Facebook Event page:) There were many popular Jamaican duos singing love ballads in early 60s: Stranger and Patsy, Keith and Enid, Alton and Eddie, Derrick and Patsy, Jackie Opel and Doreen Shaffer, and Lord Creator and Norma Fraser, just to name a few. But perhaps the greatest duettist of them all was Roy Panton, who started recording in the late 50s with Stranger Cole and Eric "Monty" Morris, duetted with a young Millie Small, and produced a plethora of ska/rocksteady recordings with Yvonne Harrison that rode high on the Jamaican charts during the early 1960s. These powerful recordings touched the hearts of many and drew much inspiration from the black American duo Shirley and Lee. Focusing mostly on themes of romance, many of these duet recordings acted as a springboard to catapult singers into successful solo careers.

Millie Small was one such atrist, who as a teen sang alongside Roy Panton at Clement Coxson Dodd's Studio One. Roy and Millie had a hit with "We’ll Meet," which stayed at #1 in the Jamaican charts for six weeks. The success of the duo's debut disc spurred Dodd to accelerate their output over the ensuing months, including "Never Say Goodbye," "There'll Come A Day," and "You're The Only One," among their most popular works from this period. Yet while Roy and Millie were fast becoming one of the island's leading acts, financial recompense from their recorded work remained meager, so in early in 1963 the pair switched to Lindon Pottinger's Gay Disc Records spawning the popular "Oh Shirley" and "Marie," the latter becoming one of the biggest-selling Jamaican singles of that summer. That same year Prince Buster produced "I'll Go" b/w "Over And Over" and as the disc climbed the national radio charts the fate of the island's popular duo were being determined elsewhere.

In 1963 Chris Blackwell brought Millie Small back to Britain, and the rest shall we say is history...

After Millie Small's worldwide smash "My Boy Lollipop," a plethora of albums featuring early Roy Panton duets were released seeking to exploit the young singer's sudden popularity: Millie and Blue Beat issued by Melodisc/Blue Beat, Millie and Her Boyfriends on Island/Trojan, and Ska At The Jamaica Playboy Club on Island.

In addition, the Jamaican starlet was the main focus of a 1965 "Ready, Steady, Go" TV special entitled "Millie In Jamaica," a one-hour show that included contributions from Roy Panton alongside Jimmy Cliff, Count Ossie, Prince Buster, Byron Lee, Louis Bennett, and Lord Jellicoe.

Roy kept busy at this time cutting solo singles, but eventually teamed up with a new duet partner by the name of Yvonne Harrison, who was enjoying solo chart success at the time with "The Chase." As Roy and Yvonne, they had their first hit with "Two Roads Before You" and its flip side "Join Together, and they continued recording for several producers throughout the 60s, performed live with Byron Lee and The Dragonaires on the "All Island Tour," were featured on the first televised show in Jamaica at Kingston's Sombrero Club (which became part of the 1964 documentary "This Is Ska"), and recorded with Tommy McCook and The Supersonics.

Jamaican Oldies Productions and Jump Up Records are proud to present the official North American album release for Roy Panton and Yvonne Harrison's first ever anthology, Roy Panton and Yvonne  Harris with Friends, a collection of 17 rare studio recordings from 1960-1971. Released by Liquidator Music in Spain, these tracks have been cleaned and remastered for the first time, featuring songs performed both together and solo, including collaborations from Eric "Monty" Morris, Millie Small, Annette, and Glen Adams.

Roy and Yvonne will be backed by The Prizefighters from Minneapolis, who will perform a full set as well. They're welcomed back after doing such an incredible job with Stranger Cole last November!
Opening the night will be The Pressure, crucial vintage Jamaican rocksteady from Pittsburgh, PA.

DJ Chuck Wren, Triton Soundsystem, Darren Reggae, and Feel The Rhythm DJs spin your favorite Jamaican oldies - strictly on vinyl. All this plus vendors selling original Jamaican vinyl, hand screened concert posters, Jump Up Records' massive merch table and much more.

Ticket info: Tickets on sale soon via Manye Stage website: Tickets are $25. This is an 18+ show. There will be a limited amount of two-day passes available for $40, so if you know you're coming for the weekend, snatch these up quick!

There will be a pre-party at Delilah's Chicago on Thursday, Feburary 28th. DJ Chuck Wren opens up his regular night (Chicago's longest-running ska/reggae monthly at 18 years) to an all star cast of
 in town and out of town DJs from 9:00 pm to 2:00 am.