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Books about Ska by Heather Augustyn

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By - haugustyn

Ska Supporter Edward Seaga Dies

I was sad to learn that Former Prime Minister Edward Seaga died yesterday on his 89th birthday. Though not a fan of his politics to say the least, I do admire his passion, dedication, and support of Jamaican music–especially folk music and ska. His contributions to Jamaican culture are undeniable. My most recent book, Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for

By - haugustyn

Dance the Jamaica Ska

In my most recent book, Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for a National Sound, I chronicle the efforts of the Jamaican government and music industry to establish the identity of this newly-independent country through a series of events in Jamaica and the United States. Central to this effort was the ska, both the music and the dance. Ronnie Nasralla, manager

By - haugustyn

Singing and Signing

I had the pleasure of attending the Back to the Beach Festival at Huntington Beach State Park April 27th and saw one of my all-time favorites, The Beat. Though Dave Wakeling has not performed with Ranking Roger for many years, this one was especially difficult since Roger passed away on March 26th and his funeral was just this past Monday,

By - haugustyn

Tribute to Ranking Roger

One of my all-time favorite people in all of ska, in all of music–Ranking Roger–has died on March 26, 2019, according to The Beat’s official website. Cancer. Again. Cancer. Ranking Roger, whose real name was Roger Charlery, was one-half of the dynamic duo that fronted The Beat and General Public with Dave Wakeling. He was tremendously talented and charismatic and

By - haugustyn

The Voice of Coxsone Dodd

It is fascinating to imagine Coxsone Dodd in Studio One, calling his musicians “Jackson” as a term of endearment. But for those of us who have to imagine and have never heard this legend’s voice, what did he sound like, exactly? Thanks to the record industry that he helped to launch and establish in his country, we can hear Dodd’s

By - haugustyn

Chapter Excerpt from Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for a National Sound

The following is an excerpt from chapter six, “Dance Craze,” of Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for a National Sound by Heather Augustyn. This book is 200 pages of exclusive interviews, photos, archival documents, and narrative that chronicles Jamaica’s effort to bring ska to the United States, and the world, in 1964. Reggae Steady Ska’s Charles Benoit recently published an

By - haugustyn

Trevor McNaughton of the Melodians Dies

Trevor McNaughton, the last member of the Melodians, died on Tuesday, November 20th at the age of 77, according to the Jamaica Observer. He died of respiratory failure at the Kendrick Rehabilitation Hospital in Hollywood, Florida, according to his wife, Irene. McNaughton was the last remaining member of the Melodians’s trio. Brent Dowe died in 2006 and Trevor Brevett died

By - haugustyn

Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for a National Sound published and now available on skabook.com!

My sixth book, Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for a National Sound has now been published and is available for sale. You can purchase it for only $20 US from my newly redesigned website, skabook.com, or Amazon worldwide. Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for a National Sound is the story of how ska came to America in 1964 and the

By - haugustyn

Paul Allen, owner of Sister Iggy's record collection, dies

When I heard the news on NPR this morning that Paul Allen had died, my mind immediately went to Sister Ignatius. I had long heard rumors that Allen, co-founder of Microsoft with Bill Gates and billionaire businessman and philanthropist, purchased Sister Ignatius’s record collection and so I inquired and confirmed this fact in December 2015 with the director of curatorial

By - haugustyn

The Lost Photos of Laurel Aitken

In 1998 I had the pleasure of seeing Laurel Aitken perform live at Subterranean in Chicago. I took a bunch of photos at the time using film! Yes, that’s right kids, film–a strip of transparent plastic film base coated on one side with an emulsion of silver halide crystals that, when exposed to light, produce a photographic image. I had