Here Comes Everybody, subtitled ‘An Introduction to James Joyce for the Ordinary Reader’, was commissioned by Joyce’s own publishers, Faber and Faber, in 1963. Burgess’s original title was ‘James Joyce and the Common Man’, and he introduces the book with a provocative statement: ‘If ever there was a writer for the people, Joyce was that writer.’ Here Comes Everybody was Burgess’s third non-fiction book, following in the wake of English Literature: A Survey for Students (1958) and Language Made Plain (1964). Written between January and August 1964, Here Comes Everybody was published in 1965. The American edition, published by Norton in the same year, was retitled Re Joyce. The book was widely reviewed on publication, and it quickly established itself as a useful guide to Joyce’s work.

Burgess divides Here Comes Everybody into three sections. The discussion proceeds chronologically, taking in each of Joyce’s early published works … More

First publlished OTD in 1914, The Ragged-Trousered Philanthropists, a semi-biographical novel by the Irish house painter & sign writer Robert Noonan, who wrote the book in his spare time under the pen name Robert Tressell. Clearly frustrated at the refusal of his contemporaries to recognise the inequity and iniquity of society, Tressell’s cast of hypocritical Christians, exploitative capitalists & corrupt councillors provide a backdrop for his main target—the workers who think that a better life is “not for the likes of them”. Hence the title of the book; Tressell paints the workers as “philanthropists” who throw themselves into back-breaking work for poverty wages to generate profit for their masters.

One of the characters, Frank Owen, is a socialist who tries to convince his fellow workers that capitalism is the … More

Born OTD in 1922, Trinidadian calypsonian, Aldwyn Roberts, AKA Lord Kitchener. He toured Jamaica for six months in 1947-8 with Lord Beginner (Egbert Moore) and Lord Woodbine (Harold Philips) before they took passage on the Empire Windrush to England in 1948. Upon his arrival, Kitchener performed the specially-written song “London Is the Place for Me”.

Combining factual biography with the imaginative structure and investment in the language of the novel, Anthony Joseph fully engages with … More

Born OTD in 1955, American novelist, essayist and poet, Barbara Kingslover. She was raised in rural Kentucky and lived briefly in the Congo in her early childhood. Kingsolver earned degrees in biology at DePauw University and the University of Arizona and worked as a freelance writer before she began writing novels. Her work often focuses on topics such as social justice, biodiversity and the interaction between humans and their communities and environments.

“2016 Vineland Meet Willa Knox, a woman who stands braced against an upended world that seems to hold no mercy … More

You must have wondered how it all began with the Jamaican beat music called Ska. Let’s set the records straight, it was “Duke” Reid from Western Kingston who developed this beat based on the indigenous music of Jamaica. It was way back in 1952 and then “Duke” called it ‘Rhythm ‘n Blues’. Exciting, hypnotic, a mixture of Jamaican folk music and rock ‘n roll. Duke Reid, lover of music and the deep rolling rhythms of his Jamaican people heard the beat develop from watching his people dance.

He got himself an amplified “Sound system” and while hiring it out for dances, he listened and he watched, on … More

The legendary Okeh Records needs little introduction to soul music fans around the world. It has been relentlessly plundered and treasured for its slue of Northern Soul classics produced by A&R manager Carl Davis and his songwriter Curtis Mayfield during the “soul years” 1963-70. However, the imprint was originally launched 100 years ago in 1918 by Otto K. E. Heinemann who had already established a recording studio and pressing plant in New York City. The label name was derived from Heinemann’s initials O.K.E.H. From the very early years, Okeh issued records for minority audiences, such as its foreign language music, field recordings & Dixieland jazz

But perhaps the most significant recording was “That Thing Called Love” by Mamie Smith in 1920, the first ever by … More

In this original and provocative book Ellen Meiksins Wood reminds us that capitalism is not a natural and inevitable consequence of human nature, nor is it simply an extension of age-old practices of trade and commerce. Rather, it is a late and localized product of very specific historical conditions, which required great transformations in social relations and in the human interaction with nature. This new edition is substantially revised and expanded, with extensive new material on imperialism, anti-Eurocentric history, capitalism and the nation-state, and the differences between capitalism and non-capitalist commerce.

The author traces links between the origin of capitalism and contemporary conditions such as ‘globalization’, ecological degradation, and the current … More

While Montego Bay natives Jackie Bernard, his brother Footy Bernard and cousin Lloyd Kerr recorded under various guises in the early ’60s, their collective arrival as The Kingstonians in 1967 marked a sea change not only in the vocal trio’s productivity and popularity, but also in the emerging Reggae sound. The Kingstonians made several chart-topping singles between 1968 and 1970, including the massive hit “Singer Man” whose success ultimately led to the release of their sole LP, Sufferer.

Originally issued on Trojan, Sufferer collects a dozen of The Kingstonians’ best-known songs. Produced by Derrick Harriott, these truly boss … More

Born OTD in 1940, Jamaican musical artist popular in the 1960s and 1970s, Derrick Morgan. In 1959, Morgan entered the recording studio for the first time. Duke Reid, the sound system boss, was looking for talent to record for his Treasure Isle record label. Morgan cut two popular shuffle-boogie sides “Lover Boy”, a.k.a. “S-Corner Rock”, and “Oh My”. Soon after, Morgan cut the bolero-tinged boogie “Fat Man”, which also became a hit. He also found time to record for Coxsone Dodd. In 1960 Morgan became the only artist ever to fill the places from one to seven on the Jamaican pop chart simultaneously.

Secret records are releasing a compilation of early tracks from the only artist ever to fill the places from one … More

Jamaican love songs always came across as heartfelt poetry whether they conveyed a broken heart, unrequited love or even the message, “it’s all over don’t bother to come back” anecdotes. But whatever the mood the singers of these songs were so good and versatile that putting such subject matter over in a few verses was always so moving and believable. Jamaican love songs were a constant in the ever-evolving sounds and journey that reggae music took its listeners on, from ska to rocksteady to the early reggae sounds of the late 1960s early 1970s.

Kingston Sounds have complied a great selection of songs that all deal with that timeless subject matter. New vinyl LP … More