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Ska Voovee

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Album Review

If you had the pleasure of attending a Skatalites show in the 1990s, you would have encountered an interesting mix of older and younger listeners — baby boomers who were old enough to remember the band's classic 1960s lineup were standing next to post-baby boomers who weren't even born in the 1960s but knew how tremendous the Skatalites' impact on ska and reggae had been. One thing the older and younger listeners could agree on was the fact that under saxophonist Tommy McCook's direction, the Skatalites were still quite engaging. Released in 1993, Ska Voovee finds McCook leading a lineup that includes a few other original members (bassist Lloyd Brevett and drummer Lloyd Knibbs) along with various newcomers. Thankfully, this 1993 edition of the Skatalites is quite faithful to the band's history — lively instrumentals like "Skamaica" and "Skapan" are instantly recognizable as Skatalites performances. Other Skatalites CDs of the 1990s employed some talented jazz musicians as guests, and Ska Voovee is no exception — trombonist Steve Turre and trumpeter Frank Gordon are both featured on "The Don," which is dedicated to the late trombonist extraordinaire Don Drummond. But as much as Ska Voovee has going for it, the disc falls short of essential; novices, in fact, would be better off starting out with a collection of the outfit's seminal 1960s hits. Nonetheless, this is a solid, consistently engaging effort that the Skatalites' die-hard fans will enjoy.


Formed: 1963

Genre: Reggae

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

More than a band, the Skatalites were and are an institution, an aggregation of top-notch musicians who didn't merely define the sound of Jamaica, they were the sound of Jamaica across the '50s and '60s. Although the group existed in its original incarnation for less than 18 months, members brought their signature styles to hundreds upon hundreds of the island's releases. The Skatalites officially lined up as guitarist Jerome "Jah Jerry" Hinds, bassist Lloyd Brevett, teenaged pianist Donat Roy "Jackie"...
Full Bio
Ska Voovee, The Skatalites
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  • $9.99
  • Genres: Reggae, Music, Ska
  • Released: 1993

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