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Based on a True Story

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When you're from New Zealand, you don't play reggae quite like they do in Jamaica. One listen to Based on a True Story’s opening track, "Ernie", should provide ample evidence: It begins with a piano, a wobbly synthesiser and what sounds like a pixelated New Orleans brass band, before the laidback rhythms kick in. With hints of jazz and downbeat electronica, this is perfect beach music, complete with sunshine-friendly lyrics: The "Cay's Crays" chorus "The skank be the rock in my life" sums up their worldview.


Formed: 2001 in Wellington, New Zealand

Genre: Reggae

Years Active: '00s, '10s

They've dubbed themselves "hi-tek soul," but Fat Freddy's Drop -- featuring producer and leader Fitchie, vocalist Joe Dukie, saxophonist Warren Maxwell, trumpeter Toby Laing, trombonist Joe Lindsay, guitarist Tehimana Kerr, and keyboardist Iain Gordon -- could just as easily be considered a modern reggae band that incorporates soul and dub. Prior to releasing their first album, 2005's Based on a True Story, they were already well-known in their native New Zealand; the album shipped gold and became...
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Based on a True Story, Fat Freddy's Drop
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