Now that it’s officially Summer it is time to cool off w/ some music and ska ranks right up there w/ lemonade for me a perfect laid back sunny day. The first ska CD I ever got was the Toasters “Dub 56″ and a song like “Goody Goody” takes me right back to that day of discovery. Out of all of the songs on that album 2 were left of of the second pressing, “Goody Goody” was one of them and think people should hear it (oddly enough it resurfaced on the 3rd and current pressing of “Dub 56″). Reel Big Fish, it had to be done, I couldn’t avoid them forever, plus I actually like them. I’m no ska elitist. I’m not going to lie, when I first heard this song as “In the Pit” on the “Teen Beef” 7″ I couldn’t believe it was left off their major label debut, hell there’s writing credits for this song in the CD sleeve! Thankfully they left it on the cooker and we got the sweet sweet rockin’ness that is “Thank You for Not Moshing.” Sometimes I’m hard on RBF but they’re still out there making ska, and I appreciate that. The Pietasters are another good example of a band that just doesn’t quit and has made the world better for it. I’ve only gotten a chance to see them once and it was completely amazing! Eastern Standard Time and Spring Heeled Jack were also bands that delivered awesome music that could be blasted out of car windows on warm summer nights. Finally we end with the Pilfers, and you may just question this song. Yes, this song has ska elements galore, and yes, this tune scribbles even more all over the musical landscape than any other song I’ve ever included on this podcast, but in my defense it is an exceptionally excellent song and one that was a constant party mix mainstay for my Moss Ave. Apartment days when I lived with Bryan from the Drunken Zombie podcast. Ska + Too Many Ciders + Summer Nights + Apartment Crowded with Great Friends = “Legal Shot Pam Pam!” I know, the subject matter is dark, but the music is oh so killer!
If you’re in a ska band and would like to be featured or if you know some music that you think I should hear for future inclusion, please email me at radjose[at]gmail[dot]com! I’ll play most anything.
If you didn’t follow the link at the end of last Friday’s post then you missed this. You shouldn’t miss this! Lockstep is great! Not just because my friends NotPunk Jen and Dave Grove Life of the Party are in the band, it is because they just do! Seriously, they are a fun and awesome band, and I still need their new album! And if you dig ska then you do too!
Back in my youth I was even less put together than I am now, and while I’ve never understood how people say “music saved my life,” I can without a doubt say that music kept me sane. Sane and out of trouble. And no genre more so than ska and ska/punk. It really is a lovable community! So once again I bring you listeners a bunch of songs that kept me from injecting bleach into my eyeballs or whatever the kids were doing back then. Bands like the English Beat and Sublime have been around for anyone who’s listened to the radio and had a bit of taste, but bands like the Step Lively and King Apparatus did a lot more for me personally. Like personally rocking me like Step Lively did at a basement show in Normal, IL and the Exceptions who where a super friendly group of guys who always had a handshake and a hug for any audience members. I also wanted to showcase an Exceptions song that was exclusive to the “Ska American Style” compilation that you may not’ve heard. The last song is from the Malcontents, a band so nice, that after driving for hours to attend their CD release they dedicated a song to me! See, these bands are all such lovable people that just seeing them and hanging out with them kept me from a life time of being a damn jerk all the time.
If you’re in a ska band and would like to be featured or if you know some music that you think I should hear for future inclusion, please email me at radjose[at]gmail[dot]com!
This is going to be the record I post that stands out the most, if only for the musical content on it. Its not ska, its not punk, its not some precious little indie band, it is the Harwood Brothers, a rock outfit from the Peoria IL area. I really should know a lot more about this band than I do, in fact, I’ve been told I knew a lot more about them back in the day. One of the members of the Harwood Brothers is my godfather and uncle, Uncle Jim. My mom used to take me to see them when I was a mere tot and I used to dance around all the time, in fact I used to cue up this very 7″ record (more often to the b-side so I vaguely remember being told once) and dance around the living room. I have no memory of any of this. That’s all I even have to go on to try and date this record as coming out in the late 70s/early 80s. I remember when I was a little bit older seeing a band my Uncle Jim was in play at the Woodcutter and in Dunlap and Princeville at the carnival/fairs that would be put on over the Summer, but I’m pretty sure that was a different band. These two songs are more of a southern rock flavor, and I think I’m using the term right, I could be off, this is a little out of my musical knowledge zone. Enjoy them, I sure did, also thank my mother, as I stole this record from her. Oh, and I apologize for the skip near the beginning of “Hometown Girls”, try as I might I couldn’t get a clean record of it.