We are so pleased to have these must have 80’s classics from THE TOASTERS back in stock! One of my faves to this day is their 1989 classic “THRILL ME UP”, originally released on Skaloid. That was the heyday of singers Sean ‘Cavo‘ Dinsmore and Lionel ‘Nene‘ Bernard, who became so popular from this album that they got signed to a major label as the UNITY 2. “POOL SHARK” was released on Unicorn in 1987 and contains early classics that the band still performs to this day! Continue reading THE TOASTERS “THRILL ME UP” & “POOL SHARK” LP vinyl reissued on MAD BUTCHER Germany! Must have 80’s classics!
The wait is over! The SPECIALIZED Teenage Cancer Trust folks in the UK just released their BOSS 4xCD – a tribute to the original 60’s ska & reggae sounds. The Jump Up vinyl 7″ singles have JUST arrived – and we think this 4 song EP is absolutely brilliant!! One side is on a roots reggae Jamaican tip, while the other has a 2-TONE ska 80’s flair! Limited edition of 400 each and will go fast! FYI: these will be shooting across the pond and will arrive in the UK next week where they will be available on the Specialized website!
BOSS – Tribute to the Original Sounds 7″ vinyl EP (JUMPTCT11) : Kingston All Stars f/ Stranger Cole “Step Up / Keith & Tex w/ Akasha “Stop That Train” / The Crombies “Rough & Tough” / Arthur Kay & The Clerks “Sea Cruise” Continue reading BOSS – Tribute To Original Sounds 7″ vinyl EP available now – feat Keith & Tex, Stranger Cole, The Crombies, and Arthur Kay!
In 2011 Chicago ska/reggae legends HEAVY MANNERS recorded their first new music since the early 80s: “Get Me Out Of Debt” is a fun, whimsical and witty 2 TONE ska dancer with great keyboards and sax! “Fight The Good Fight” is a darker, political conscious reggae tune ripe for fans of original Island Records sounds. The B side is a musicologist treat – an original 80’s tune recorded back in the day and finally unearthed! “Could Not Get Enuff” is nearly 6 minutes of PETER TOSH at the tail end of disco, wonderfully mixing Heavy Manners’ Jamaican riddims into dance styled 2-TONE meets Chicago grooves. PETER TOSH also provides backing vocals!!! Not to be missed! A sound that also was utilized by THE ENGLISH BEAT on later 12″ singles! Comes in CLEAR or WHITE vinyl!
SOLD OUT: Two nuggets from the early 80s on vinyl for the first time! In the fall we were saddened to hear about the passing of founding member and original bass man Jim Robinson – we were already working on a Thanksgiving weekend Heavy Manners show ad quickly decided to turn the evening into a tribute to Jim. With help from new Chicago pressing plant Smashed Plastic and a fun 2-Tone inspired design by Destroy Brand graphics, we cranked out a limited edition one time press of 200 7″ singles to benefit Jim’s family. If you can’t pick one up at the show, get it here. If you never got around to picking up our last Heavy Manners reissue project then here’s another chance as we have a couple boxes left on clear/white vinyl.
Our annual tradition of feeding the Christmas spirit in ska/reggae style continues! THE AGGROLITES’ keyboard wizard ROGER RIVAS needs to introduction – here he returns with two instrumental hot shots of early/skinhead reggae – “Joy To The World” and “Winter Wonderland” will melt the snow off the rooftop! Limited to 300 copies, 150 on white 150 on red. SOLD OUT!
Sorry, ROGER RIVAS’ first Christmas 7″ single – instrumental organ drenched reggae versions of “Deck The Halls” and “Jingle Bells” – is ow OUT F PRINT.
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.
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!
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 random color vinyl! 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!
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. OUT OF PRINT, SORRY.
Have you been keeping up with our Jamaican Oldies shows in Chicago? If so you know that Jamaican foundation ska legend CHARLEY ORGANAIRE is a regular fixture on the Chicago scene! THE harmonica sound on thousands of early ska sessions at Studio One, Treasure Isle, etc – he was also an accomplished singer / band leader / arranger / label owner who released singles in the 60s on his own ORGANAIRES imprint. The success of his Chicago appearances, dare we call it a “return to the scene”, has lead to a tremendous relationship with Minneapolis’ THE PRIZEFIGHTERS resulting in six tracks being recorded together in the Spring of 2014. Continue reading Jamaican SKA legend CHARLEY ORGANAIRE with THE PRIZEFIGHTERS – 7″ singles + Limited Edition Tour CD