The latest imports from BRIXTON RECORDS in Spain have arrived! First off is the brand new album from UK ska legends MAROON TOWN, who were formed in the mid 80’s and created a fantastic sonic cocktail of Jamaican ska, Latin/World rhythms, hip hop vocals and modern acid jazz funky/soul styles. Maroon Town’s classic early material was featured on over 45 compilations, including releases on top European revival imprints Staccato, Unicorn, and Skank. One of our all all time favorite albums from that time was “HIGH AND DRY”, songs like “NOSTALGIA” and “POUND TO THE DOLLAR” are stone cold hip hop ska classics! That energy and feel is back in full force on this brand new album “FREEDOM CALL” – a must have for old and new fans alike! Also just issued on vinyl for the first time is NEW YORK SKA JAZZ ENSEMBLE’s 2002 classic “MINOR MOOD” – featuring new jazz ska classics and reinterpretations of Thelonious Monk, Miles Davis, and even Paul Simon. Last but not least, we have a handful of the NORTH EAST SKA JAZZ ORCHESTRA’s debut 7″ single featuring DAVE HILLYARD of The Slackers and FRED REITER of NYSJE. Great ska/swing from Italy!
Five years in the making….recorded in Chicago on three separate occasions, our split release with Happy As A Lark is finally a reality! In 2013, Derrick Morgan performed in Chicago for a Jamaican Oldies showcase at Mayne Stage. We asked Derrick if he was interested in recording a song while he was in town – and to our delight he said YES! Anthony from The Drastics had a country-reggae-ska themed project in the works under the alter-ego TECTONICS, he produced a version of the 1950’s Webb Pierce classic “There Stands The Glass” and suggested that Derrick Morgan would be a perfect fit. When we played the backing track to Derrick over a cellphone, he immediately knew the tune (of course!) and got excited to be part of this wonderful project. A year later we brought in Dennis Alcapone to Chicago for a Jamaican Oldies showcase – we thought to ourselves…let’s recreate those old 45s and have Dennis chat over the song that Derrick recorded a year earlier! A true DJ version on the flip! The project got shelved for a few years… but in 2018 Charlie Organaire went into the studio to play harmonica on the tune. It was finally complete! A very limited initial pressing is now available from Jump Up and Happy As Lark – we each have an exclusive color. Our copies are a golden yellow and it’s limited to 100 copies.
Not to be outdone is a new DJ promo limited edition 7″ single from lovers rock pioneer Susan Cadogan! Last year we released the extended vinyl version of her latest project produced by Mitch Giro. This new 7″ single featured two brand new tracks produced by Mitch – a gentle ska groover called “I Don’t Want Anybody But You” b/w a cool rock steady ae jewel called “The Girl Who Cried Over You”. Limited to 100 hand-stamped copies!
THE BUSTERS are one of Germany’s most loved ska revival bands, formed in 1987. Playing 2 Tone-influenced ska, they became one of the best-known German ska bands, having a minor hit single with a ska cover of Bobby McFerrin’s “Don’t Worry Be Happy” plus releasing albums on Sony Music Germany. Their first two albums “RUDER THAN RUDE” and “COUCH POTATOES” were stone cold European revival classics that reaching a die-hard fan base in the USA. THE BUSTERS even toured the USA at the beginning of the 90’s with releases on MOON SKA NYC. To this day the band tour Germany every Christmas and run their own independent record label, Ska Revolution Records. The Busters have recently released their fourteenth studio album “STRAIGHT AHEAD” – limited edition digipack import CDs will be back in stock soon. To keep the vinyl tradition alive, JUMP UP has released a limited edition 7″ single for the 2017 tour, limited to 500 copies in three colors: Dark Red, Lime Green (German Tour Only), and Goldenrod yellow (now sold out). The a-side “Hunky Dory” is a swingy jazzy ska number full of DR RING DING’s fun-loving crooner vocal style, the flip “SKA BANG 87” is an uptempo brassy ska instrumental that brings to mind vintage Let’s Go Bowling! Essential!
Did you miss out on the limited edition 180g LP + CD version of their previous record “Supersonic Scratch” ? Have no fear we imported another small batch, you have a second chance to get that great record!
One silver lining of the vinyl reissue world is that overlooked albums get a second chance, we are experiencing this euphoria with Polish band ALIANS and their 2000 release “Rowne Prawa” – which is finally getting the double vinyl gatefold sleeve treatment from JIMMY JAZZ Records. We keep asking ourselves “How did we miss this the first time around?”. What a fantastic record – at times it channels the late 80’s European revival sounds of THE BUSTERS, MR REVIEW, and NO SPORTS. Our fave tunes are the very 2-TONE ones with tight horns – and that minor key gives it the slight flavor of a former Soviet block nation. Mixed in are slower dubby punky reggae tunes, an homage to PETER TOSH on “Equal Rights” and two fantastic covers of THE CLASH. A manic accordion permeates the band’s sound throught, giving the record a bit of a Spaghetti Western feel – and when they abandon the ska altogether it’s fast manic punk with shades of Gogol Bordello, Flogging Molly or THE POGUES ala Straight To Hell soundtrack. Yes, we think that this record is THAT good. Gatefold sleeve double vinyl import, sung in both English and Polish. Continue reading Polish SKA Power! ALIANS “Równe Prawa” 2xLP reissue + VESPA “Radzi” 7″ EP
Two classic 90’s album from American ska pioneers THE TOASTERS are once again back on vinyl! “DUB 56” from 1994 is a Moon Ska NYC classic, back in print on dark grey marble vinyl in cool poster sleeve! A fantastic album, a highlight of the “third wave” – influenced heavily by British 2 Tone yet distinctly American. 14 tracks on vinyl: Direction, Freedom, Mona, Dancin’, Dub 56, Sweet Cherie, Tunisia, Little Hidden Secrets, Marlboro Man, Ain’t Huthin’, Razor Cut, Legal Shot, Midnight Hour, Goody Goody. A couple years ago when we were chatting to Bucket from THE TOASTERS, we realized that there were a handful of albums that NEVER appeared on vinyl including the amazing 2 TONE ARMY collection which included their biggest MTV2 video hits! The artwork is a tribute to iconic NYC SKA artist STEVE HEX who we lost a few years ago, this must have album includes the hits “I WASN’T GOING TO CALL YOU ANYWAY” and the title track “2 TONE ARMY”. 10 tracks, on dark grey marble vinyl. A truly fantastic record, one we are so proud to have our name on!
If you’re a manic collector make sure you pick up these two albums on limited edition cassette tape too!
Our yearly tradition of releasing Christmas ska/reggae wax continues into it’s 6th straight year! BROOKLYN ATTRACTORS have returned with two killer jazz-reggae nuggets for your holiday pleasure: “Ras Nick” and “Upon The Housetop”. This all star band features Eddie Ocampo-drums / Bid Dan Jeselsohn-bass / Andy Bassford-lead guitar / Matt Kursmark-rhythm guitar / Mike Sarason-piano and Rhodes / Larry McDonald-percussion / Anant Pradhan-alto/tenor saxophones and Bansuri flute / Luke Penella-flute and tenor saxophone / Philip Cooper-trombone / Rich Graiko-trumpet. This year’s new 7″ single has an added special treat – cover artwork painted by Danny Rebel. Limited to 200 copies, 100 on green and 100 on red. Sure to go fast!
Last year’s Christmas 7″ single is back in stock! We are SO PROUD of this record!! In the late 80’s there were a handful of bands across the world that kept the ska flame alive, one of our favorites was NAPOLEON SOLO from Denmark. An amazing soul/ska band, keeping the 2-TONE flame with modernist vibe, their first mini-LP “HOW TO STEAL THE WORLD” on UNICORN is still a stone cold classic to this day! They’ve been at it for over 30 years, but haven’t released a new record since the early 90’s. LEO & THE LINE UP are also from Denmark – they’ve become one of the hottest ska bands in Europe with releases on PORK PIE, GROVER, and of course JUMP UP. An amazing soul ska band with three amazing female back up singers – it just made sense to unite the two on this Christmas vinyl single! DANISH DYNAMITE BABY! LEO & THE LINEUP penned a new holiday classic “CHRISTMAS WITHOUT YOU” while NAPOLEON SOLO covers the classic “MERRY XMAS EVERYBODY”. Limited edition of 500, available on RED and GREEN vinyl.
CHRISTMAS RE-PRESSES! ROGER RIVAS’ holiday hot shots are back in print, limited to 100 copies on RED vinyl. Instrumental Organ Drenched Early Reggae versions of “Deck The Halls” and “Jingle Bells” from The Aggrolites keyboard master!! Big hole 45 rpm vinyl – act fast these won’t last!
BROOKYLN ATTRACTORS are an all star jazz ska/reggae band comprising of members of VOID UNION, WESTBOUND TRAIN, NEW YORK SKA JAZZ ENSEMBLE, STUBBORN ALLSTARS, DUB IS A WEAPON, THE ROCKSTEADY 7, THE TOASTERS plus original Jamaican percussion legend LARRY McDONALD! Their debut album “GOOD EVIL ALCHEMY” took the world by storm in 2014 receiving critical acclaim across the world, and at the end of 2014 the crew spread some holiday cheer – jazz reggae renditions of “JINGLE BELLS” and “GOD REST DEM IRIE GENTLEMEN”. Sorry, out of print until Christmas 2018!
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. Continue reading LAUREL AITKEN LP reissues on Black Butcher Classics! Rare RIO & DOCTOR BIRD albums from the 60’s!
In November 2014 Chicago and Los Angeles were lucky to have showcases with one of the sweetest soul voices in Jamaican music history, Studio One legend WINSTON “Mr Fix It” FRANCIS. The 60’s hitmaker was one of Coxson Dodd’s biggest singers, and his 1969 “Mr Fix It” LP featured the hit songs “Too Experienced”, “Same Old Song”, “Fools Fall In Love” plus the title track. His second album “California Dreaming” continued the tradition of soulful reggae covers, including “Yester Me Yester You” , “Groovy Situation”, “Always Something There To Remind Me” and the hit Mamas & The Papas tune that named the album. In between these albums WINSTON would release two tunes that would drive collectors crazy 45+ years later – “THE BREAK” under the moniker BOB MELODY, and “YOUR CHEATING HEART” – a duet with LLOYD ROBINSON. Both these original 7″ singles fetch INSANE amounts on eBay – yet strangely both tunes have never appeared on reissue – UNTIL NOW! We’ve got pink 7″ vinyl back in stock now!