Born OTD in 1959, Happy 60th Birthday to Terry Hall. “We didn’t realise we were playing ‘ska’ – we grew up in a heavily Jamaican populated area, and we were referencing music we grew up with. We once played a gig to skinheads and found our audience by accident. We did venture to London, but none of the record companies were interested. They didn’t know who we were, so we formed our own label in Coventry” – Terry Hall.

Ska originated in Jamaica in the late Fifties and combined Caribbean mento and calypso with American jazz and rnb. Ska … More

Born OTD in 1953, reggae drummer of The Specials, John ‘Brad’ Bradbury. Brad played a crucial role in the history of the Specials, the still massively successful multiracial band that first shook up the British music scene in the late 1970s & early 80s by mixing Jamaican ska with punk energy, a bravely political stance & good humour. They were that rarity, a thoughtful band who created great dance music, & Brad was central to their distinctive style. According to the band’s bass player, Horace Panter: “He called his approach ‘attack drumming’ & it became the Specials’ signature sound. He mixed the drive of northern soul with a reggae feel. And he improvised. He was different every night.”

Against the backdrop of the demise of punk, social unrest, and the coming to power of Margaret Thatcher, the Specials … More