Record Store Day Drop #2 DEAL: 3 LP + 2 7″ singles + Chema Skandal Slipmat / Koozie & CD sampler only $50 shipped in USA ($65 worldwide)

As you all know this year has been really complicated when it came to scheduling the annual Record Store Day celebration. Originally moved from April to June, then spread over 3 different Saturdays in August, September, and October. We didn’t want to endanger our fans trying to pick up our special RSD release, so we decided to pull THE SKATALITES Ska Voovee title officially from the event and release it in July. Our other special titles were also released at the same time (The Skumks, King Kong 4) creating a mini summer release celebration! This Saturday we are celebrating RSD Drop #2 with another opportunity for you to discover new bans with our limited mega-sale! A big ol’ pile of vinyl and other goodies for only $50 postage paid.  This deal is available worldwide too  –  only $65 postage paid! Only 20 deals will be honored so act fast! You must purchase the deal first before sending your list of choices….thank you! Continue reading Record Store Day Drop #2 DEAL: 3 LP + 2 7″ singles + Chema Skandal Slipmat / Koozie & CD sampler only $50 shipped in USA ($65 worldwide)

Polish Ska Must Haves! STEADY SOCIAL CLUB “Take One” LP / 3 CITY STOMPERS “Hulanka” LP

DUFF GUIDE TO SKA review. Enough said!! “Take One” is the impressive debut album from Poland’s first rocksteady act Steady Social Club, and is filled with really terrific original tunes and ace performances–all recorded live in the studio on analog gear in one take, warts and all, with no edits, overdubs, etc. (hence, the album title). It should be noted that Steady Social Club are not newcomers to the scene, as members hail from other Polish and (one) German ska groups (Vespa, The Bartenders, Real Cool Sound, Big Fat Mama, and Spartan Allstars). They joke that they’re ska veterans, but older now, so they play slower (hah!). And this really is a late night, end-of-the-afterparty record, when people couple or uncouple, and don’t necessarily make the best decisions (practically all of the songs on Take One are about falling in or extracting oneself from a romantic relationship). The rocksteady tempos are markedly (almost stubbornly) unhurried, giving the male and female singers (Wioletta Baran, Anna Teliczan, and Boris Borowski) plenty of time to do their thing, and the song arrangements are uncomplicated, yet completely appropriate and effective (the band is rounded out by Artur Grochowski on drums, percussions, and keyboards; Bartłomiej Kościański on bass, guitar, and keys; and Maciej Januchowski on guitar, keyboards, and vocals; the later two wrote all of the tracks here). Top cuts here include “Let’s Do Rocksteady,” which has wonderful harmonizing and offbeat use of male falsetto (“Let’s forget all the daily trouble/Now it’s just you and me together/Hold me tight, till you feel my heartbeat/All the world can come back tomorrow”); the gorgeous ballad “Magic Feeling” (which, of course, is that of being in love); and the incredibly sultry tracks “Set Me Free” (who could resist this entreaty?) and the you’re-headed-for-a fall “Slow Down.” “You Kept Me Waiting” is more Harry J skinhead reggae than rocksteady and features really amazing Jerry Dammers-esque organ during the chorus (the singer knows he’s not ever going to get what he wants, but still can’t help himself: “I’ll keep on waiting/Up through the night/I’ll keep on waiting/Until the dawn/Why?”). “Friend or Foe” also is excellent dirty reggae about someone getting what they’re owed in a Niney the Observer “Blood and Fire” kind of way (“I say one day/You gonna pay/And the lies you’ve said/Will be exposed!”). Perhaps the fiercest song on the album is “There’s the Door” (I’m warning you/This game won’t be played be no more/It is last chance for you to change/And otherwise there’s the door”)–you won’t be able to resist singing along with the ominous “ohs” of the chorus.  Thanks again to  www.duffguidetoska.com

Not to be outdone we have the brand new album from 3 CITY STOMPERS on top label JIMMY JAZZ records! It’s wonderful female fronted 2-Tone ska that is guaranteed to make you dance! Reminds me of much of the early 90’s European explosion output on SKANK or UNICORN,  traditional based with strong horns and a modern 2-Tone energy. Some tracks rare similar to the SOUL RADICS, others a tad like the CHECKERED CABS. Something for everyone!

 

EASTERN STANDARD TIME “Tempus Fugit” LP on blue wax + “The Dragon” 7″ single

We’ve restocked some classics from Washington DC’s jazz ska pioneers! Back in 2010 we released “Tempus Fugit” in the USA on that ol’ compact disc format and imported German vinyl copies from Grover Records. We realize many of you were’s hooked on the wax then – that’s why we are bringing it back! We even have the limited edition blue vinyl repress! In between “Tempus Fugit” and  2019’s “Time For Change” the band released their own 7 inch single entitled “The Dragon”, which is available through us for the first time ever! Get both and get a deal!

New European Imports: T-KILLAS “Awareness” LP / DOWNBEAT DETONATORS “Reggae Boomshot!” LP

Inspired by bands like The Clash, The Specials, and Redskins, Germany’s T-KILLAS released their debut album “It’s Up To You!” in 2014 full of energetic 2-Tone ska mixed with a heavy dose of mod, garage, and punk. It’s fast, snotty and cheeky, with lots of guitar and organ as well as a dominant saxophone that brings to mind many of the European bands from the early 90’s ska explosion. 2016 saw the band’s first vinyl release with the 7 ” single “Kicking The Pressure ” on Grover Records and Casual Records. In 2020, after a 6 year wait, the second album “Awareness” is finally here on Fire and Flames Music and Grover Records. Not to be outdone are Holland’s Downbeat Detonators who play their own unique brand of rocksteady and ska, inspired by the era of Jamaican music during the ’60s and ’70s. Horn driven melodies, organ scorchers, sweet vocal harmonies and a strong rocksteady riddim section are the main ingredients of their explosive mix of ska, rocksteady, early reggae and calypso. Original songs inspired by artists like Don Drummond, Prince Buster, Jackie Mittoo, Toots & the Maytals, and Desmond Dekker . It’s Detonation Time with their band new vinyl album “Reggae Boomshot!”. Both these albums have been in heavy rotation here for months, get both get a deal and discover some new bands from the European Union!

Traditional Cali Sounds: THE STEADY 45s “Trouble In Paradise” LP / THE EXPANDERS “Old Time Something Come Again” LP (JUMP112LP) – last copies!

We are proud to finally have vinyl from the 7 piece rocksteady and traditional ska sensations form Los Angeles THE STEADY 45s! Beautiful harmonies, captivating rhythms and that driving Jamaican beat, the influences are strong: Desmond Dekker, Justin Hinds, Jackie Opel, Hepcat, Derrick Harriot, The Ethiopians, The Gaylads, The Techniques, The Heptones, The Wailers, Alton Ellis, Prince Buster,  Skatalites, Delroy Wilson, The Impressions, The Temptations, Smokey Robinson and The Miracles, Studio 1, Treasure Isle the list goes on! A few years back John Butcher of The Expanders joined the Steady 45s as the new lead singer, so we figured we should remind you about the gem we released years and years ago – these are our LAST COPIES on MINT GREEN vinyl. Continue reading Traditional Cali Sounds: THE STEADY 45s “Trouble In Paradise” LP / THE EXPANDERS “Old Time Something Come Again” LP (JUMP112LP) – last copies!

NEW YORK SKA JAZZ ENSEMBLE “Break Thru” LP / “Minor Moods” LP

It’s hard to believe that we now have fourteen NYSJE albums to enjoy! Quite an accomplishment in today’s music world, and maybe even more impressive for a “modern” traditional ska band. Think back to the humble beginnings of Rocksteady Freddie when he left The Toasters to start this wonderful project in the 90s – for us it’s crazy to think that the New York Ska Jazz Ensemble was the first ska concert at the Chicago House of Blues! As always you can expect top notch jazzy arrangements of foundation Jamaican sounds, over the years the players have changed but the vibe and energy remain the same. Freddie Reiter will never steer you wrong on these ten glorious tracks! Includes a fun version of “Love & Affection” and a tribute to the late great Tom Petty with “Learning To Fly”. “Break Thru” is a great mix of instrumental and vocal tracks that covers many Caribbean styles, of course all channeled through American jazz / blues arrangements that’s unique to this long-standing ensemble. Get This! Continue reading NEW YORK SKA JAZZ ENSEMBLE “Break Thru” LP / “Minor Moods” LP

LAUREL AITKEN vinyl reissues on Black Butcher! Rare RIO & DOCTOR BIRD productions from the 60’s!

We are so proud to have these LAUREL AITKEN replica vinyl editions back in stock from Mad Butcher / Black Butcher classics! Must haves for fans of skinhead reggae, funky boogaloo soul, and Laurel’s unique style that can breath new life into pop standards. “SKA WITH LAUREL AITKEN” originally came out in 1966 on RIO UK, while the 1969 classic “SAY FIRE” originally came out on legendary imprint DOCTOR BIRD UK. We’ve also restocked the last copies of the 7 inch reissues of “Scandal In Brixton Market” and “Lawd Doctor” – essential skinhead reggae selections for the Boss DJ! Continue reading LAUREL AITKEN vinyl reissues on Black Butcher! Rare RIO & DOCTOR BIRD productions from the 60’s!

LOS BARRELLSHOTS & QUITO SKA JAZZ – Traditional Ska & Reggae from Ecuador:

We are so excited to have these two amazing vinyl titles from LUCHA LIBRE RECORDS, who specialize in promoting bands from the Ecuadoran ska/reggae scene! Snatch these up as they are extremely limited and won’t be restocked! LOS BARRELSHOTS released their debut mini CD “Reggae Explosion” in 2017, and now the first Ecuadorian Early Reggae / Rocksteady band from Quito kick it into high gear with their debut full length entitled “REGGAE VOLCANO”. Featuring 10 original tracks, mainly instrumental, once again staking their claim as one of the top Latin American groups of the skinhead reggae genre. Los Barrelshots have been able to recreate in the studio this infectious sound, firmly rooted in the Jamaican musical heritage blended with soul, funk, and jazz, which has made them an essential live act of the national scene. Featuring Lady Lex on one track. Limited to 300 hand-numbered copies. QUITO SKA JAZZ ‘s debut LP features 8 extended original instrumental jazz ska tracks, featuring Fred Reiter from New York Ska Jazz Ensemble on one song. This top Ecuadorian band formed in 2012 and quickly became active on the local scene, single handedly spreading the gospel of ska and Jamaican musical culture in Ecuador. “Ciudad of Ska” is truly the first Ska record from thee “middle of the world” to get the vinyl treatment! Including one dub version and a live track. Limited to 300 hand-numbered copies housed in an amazing fold out poster sleeve. BUY BOTH LPs and get a DEAL! Free DRINK COASTERS and STICKERS while supplies last!

Mad Butcher Reissues: THE TROJANS “A La Ska” LP – a true Celtic Ska masterpiece!

GAZ MAYALL is a British legend. World known DJ, record collector, producer and singer – he started THE TROJANS during the mid 80s creating a tremendous mix of R&B, Jamaican Ska, soul and Celtic sounds. He started his own label GAZ’S ROCKIN’ RECORDS to release music by THE TROJANS, and “A LA SKA” was the band’s debut from 1987. Thirty three years later it has been reissued by Mad Butcher Records in Germany! Not to be outdone we have restocked the amazing 4 track EP from another British rhythm & blues ska band from 1989 called THE RUDE BOYS!

Mad Butcher Reissues: NO SPORTS “King Ska” LP / “Stay Rude Stay Rebel” 7 inch EP

The late 80s / early 90s was a truly fantastic time for ska music on the European continent. Ska was still heavily influenced by 2-Tone and hadn’t been diluted yet by the forthcoming third wave. Labels like Unicorn, Skank, and Pork Pie ruled the scene and gave fans worldwide something to look forward to! German skasters NO SPORTS were one of those top acts and their first two releases are still classics to this day. Mad Butcher Germany has reissued their amazing debut “KING SKA” from 1989 as well as their follow up 4 song “STAY RUDE STAY REBEL” EP from 1990, now released on 7 inch single.