Artist: The Specials
Song: “(Dawning of a) New Era”
Today marks day four of Our Vinyl’s Reggae week, as we take a closer look at an offshoot of the reggae scene and its history — namely, “second wave” ska.
The late seventies marked a new time for the ska and reggae movements that had taken place in Jamaica through the sixties up into the early seventies. By then, the world had taken interest in the new styles of music, and were eager to make their own flavor of the genre.
When The Specials came out with Specials in 1979, it was clear that Jamaica no longer could claim to be the solitary home of ska and reggae. The band, based in London, England, took the feel of the genre made famous by their predecessors, and mixed in their political feelings and punk sensibilities to create something truly unique — and much more uptempo. Thus, the “second wave” of ska had begun. Further down the line, punk music would grasp a stronger hold on the genre, clearing the way for “third wave” acts such as the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Sublime, and No Doubt.
Check out the aptly named track “(Dawning of a) New Era” below, and let us know what you think of this second wave era. Was ska and reggae heading in the right direction? Do you prefer the more traditional roots sound? Let us know below!
Dean Goranites | Associate Editor