History Of Randy’s Documentary

Posted on November 22nd, 2008 by JJ Loy

Here’s another great find from Lawless over at DancinMood.com.

I’m sure many of you are familiar with the vintage Jamaican label, Randy’s.  Familiar or not, this 40 minute doc is sure to school you on a few things you might not know.  I especially enjoyed the segmants where they discussed Lord Creator- and why the Chin’s chose a calypso as their Jamaican Independance release.

Lord Creator is a great old Calypsonian, who was a tremendous influence on Dr. Ring-Ding and many others.  And this documentary also features Ken Boothe, Johnny Moore, Clive Chin and many others.

There are a lot of Ska/Reggae documentaries coming out this next year- most of them on DVD.  I imagine most of those will contain an obligitory history of the various branches of JA music.  The Randy’s doc skims over many of the details of what Ska, Rocksteady and Reggae are, and focuses more on the label’s involvement in those movements.  Very well done.

Comments (0) Nov 22 2008

Ska Online: Story of Jamaican Music Documentary

Posted on June 28th, 2007 by JJ Loy

A few years back, the BBC made a great documentary, Reggae: The Story of Jamaican Music. It was fantastic, covering the birth of Ska during Jamaica’s independence and all the way up to Dance Hall.

I was most interested in the first episode which dealt mostly with the early ska days. The film takes us to the Alpha Boys School, and introduces us to the nun that helped raise the Skatalites, as well as many other notable Jamaican musicians. The cameras travel down the neighborhoods of Kingston where the original studios and clubs have been left to rot. We hear from likes of Lord Creator, and the then Prime Minister of Jamaica, before the film follows ska’s path to the UK, where we are privy to interviews with UB40, Paul Simonon, and many others.

If you have friends that need a good primer on Jamaican Roots music, I highly recomend this show. My only complaint is that the narrator states outright that Ska is Jamaica’s first type of music, even though the guests anecdotally refer to both Mento and Nyahbinghi in the interviews.

Here now, is the first episode of this great series, broken into four parts (as per Daily Motion rules)

UPDATE 05/10/08: DailyMotion is not cooperating with my embed plugin, but the links are still active:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

P.S. DailyMotion is a great site. They let you upload longer segments than YouTube, and I love the way they display their tags, making the more popular tags more prominent than the others. Try searching for obvious tags: Ska, Reggae, or your favorite band. But given their constant embedding issues and increasingly limited content, I don’t really advocate the site any longer.

Comments (2) Jun 28 2007