freestyle ska

Time goes by – 2 and a half

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There were particular times spent in and around local pubs and certain clubs – pubs in Pitsmoor already mentioned such as the East House, the Tea Gardens, the Highway and more. In these days I djed and spent time just enjoying a few beers but also disappeared off to some club nights, events, parties and the like. These were also eclectic times, enjoying local things and a range of music:
– deep house, balearic beats

– soul, particularly northern (an old friend had been Dave Godin – check his history and you will see the connection)
– ska, being a Cov lad, of course

– the beginnings of a love for certain garage sounds, drum and bass and the like

Redhouse joys

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I have written before about the joys of small venues. The Redhouse has been a key part of my life – at least these latter years. Dealing with business matters there, security, event planning, djing, vjing and so on. It will soon close – unfortunately such pub chains as Punch have little appreciation for the aesthetics of the matter, only the pounds, shillings and pence, no real humanity, just an adding machine.









This was a venue that gave us the widest range of music, certainly in South Yorkshire if not Yorkshire full stop. Here you could find bands, admittedly small, but still from all over the world. Personally I have played music here from every continent. Events such as the celebration of Che Guevara’s birthday, at one time an annual event, where I supplied visuals. I remember playing balkan to a particular crowd, african – from african zouk to kizomba and kudurro, at other times kwaito and afro-beat. Some of the biggest nights were ska events and here I would play not only english language ska, from the UK and regularly the USA, but also french and spanish, mexican and dutch, with odd bits of german thrown in.



There will be a goodbye party next weekend.

A trip back home – Coventry

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Coventry is quite a city. It is my home town, I now live in Sheffield and have been based there for many, many years. It was good to see the place again. It is certainly a city of contrasts – contrasts that are still present. In recent history renowned for its engineering, car production and at times really high tech indutrial foundation – it has a very long history indeed. I had travelled down for a family event – the day after we had a chance to have a little look around. The history is there in front of you. There is the modern cathedral, of course, a place most have heard of – the past sits resolutely at its side.



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The Golden Cross was a pub that had real meaning for me. I met so many people there and made friends. It was in this pub I made friends with a certain John Bradbury, ten years or so later to become the drummer of the Specials and also to be there at the beginning of the Selecter. I must admit I failed in my vocal and saxophonic renditions for him and so the friendship was short but still memorable for me. I have retained a huge love of ska and 2 tone.






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Birthday bash – 15 for the 4th time – June 13th

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Yes it is friday 13th !!!




yes it was a bit of a rough night – I have looked better





This is a combined birthday bash for me and Shakira – my talented and beautiful daughter …

please come on down if you can


The Redhouse, Solly Street – June `13th from 8pm
Silverback dj and Rippa spinning tunes – ska, jungle, mashups, dancehall, trip hop, chillstep

Cool Beans friday August 30th – bands plus silverback dj and more

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30 August at 18:00 until 31 August at 04:00

It’s been a fair old while since we collaborated with another night (last one was with the mighty First Word Records back in March) so we’ve hencewise decided to hook up with not only another night but another night from ANOTHER CITY.


That’s right, the sounds of London Bass Club (WEST LONDON BASS CLUB and East London Bass Club) shall be procreating with the sounds of Cool Beans on the 30th August 2013 at everyone’s favourite procreation den – The Harley. Mmmmm, procreation den.

Also, have you seen you can tag stuff in event info now – how exciting/boring! (cross one off depending on your personality)

Yes, travelling all the way up from the Big Smoke to help us put on a 10 hour party is London Bass Club. What’s that? You want some live music? Hold your god damn ponies we’re getting to that……..right NOW!

Finally getting those scamps in The JB Conspiracy up for a show! Long, long time fans of this band, the play a ska/reggae/punk crossover but with a certain je-ne-sais-quoi that leaves you with a warm, fuzzy feeling in your stomach. Their releases have been nothing short of fantastic – songwriting, musical technicality, production levels, they have it all. Good times guaranteed!

Ska-punk-reggae ravers China Shop Bull shall be main support on this fine evening. Having hit up a ton of festivals over the summer, these lads shall be bang on point for a storming set! Check out some of their recent videos for audio/visual stimulation!

London crew Popes of Chillitown first hit the Cool Beans stage at Tramlines 2012 and drove the upstairs room at the Great Gatsby into an absolute frenzy. The show included a circle pit and a lot of sweating – delighted to have these boys back in town!

As seen at Tramlines 2013, Sheffield favourites The Mega Squad shall be opening up the proceedings with their delectable brand of funk & hip-hop.

+ DJS Arnivore / Jimmy The Gent / The Evil Uncles

Expect a supreme mashup of tropical beats and exotic treats – ska / rave / reggae / rock / bass / hiphop / reggae / breaks / punk / balkan bangers / moomBRAton / frosted folkstep / panpipe remixes / hardcore fawnography / etc

Cost to enter such a marvellous place shall be £4, doors at 6PM and we’ll most likely reduce entrance fee after the bands.


Lots of love,

Cool Beans.


Harley Live
334 Glossop Road, S10 2HW Sheffield


and just to give you some more news … silverback dj will be supplying the choonage in between all of the bands, expect a range of hip hop, funk, ska, freestyle and more …

Skapeltwa by Futurhood Av on Mixcloud

Ska goes acid by Futurhood Av on Mixcloud

Tropica gemini by Futurhood Av on Mixcloud

a tramlines mix

2 tone and more

mashed and …

Patchwork history 9 – more ska

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As a youth back in Coventry I grew up with original ska and rocksteady. I had a lot to do with Foleshill, certainly then a part of Cov with a large Jamaican population. As I grew up I managed to meet one or two of the people who would later figure quite highly in the development of the next movement on for ska – 2 tone. Much later indeed I picked up by chance an LP called ‘freestyle ska’ – after the heydays of 2 tone Longsy D in particular put together forms of ska with liberal admixtures of house and hip hop. Since then ska has had a 3rd wave, with the influence of all sorts of other musical genres, not the least being Latin, Punk and a whole raft of ethnically differentiated musics. We have witnessed such major artists as the Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra, other big band versions have included outfits from New York, St. Petersburg, Melbourne and beyond. I have in my collection ska sung in a ridiculous quantity of languages – Ska-P in Spanish, French ska bands, German, Portuguese, Latvian, Croatian, Hungarian, Polish, Russian as well as the plethora of American ska still doing the turns.

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Playing some ska @ the Harley August 30th


Skapeltwa by Futurhood Av on Mixcloud