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UK Ska Festival showcases Jamaican talent

Published:Sunday | April 24, 2011 | 12:00 AM
Stanley Stevens (left), Alkebu-lan (centre) and Ansel Collins at work in Stevens' studio. - Contributed

International organist Ansel Collins of Double Barrel fame left the island on Monday for England where he joined forces with Dave Barker (popularly known as Dave and Ansel Collins).

The two were the scheduledheadline act for night two at The London International Ska Festival on Friday. The event, which began Thursday, comes to an end tonight at The Clapham Grand Theatre in London.

Reuniting for the first time since the 1970s, Dave and Ansel Collins are also celebrating the 40th anniversary of their United Kingdom number-one song, Double Barrel.

Dave Barker (born David John Crooks, October 10, 1947, Kingston, Jamaica), a session vocalist, and Ansel Collins (born 1949, Kingston, Jamaica), an organist-keyboards player, were working for producer Lee 'Scratch' Perry in Kingston, Jamaica in the late 1960s, and joined forces in 1971, for Double Barrel.

Released on Techniques Records, part of the Trojan Records label, it topped the Jamaican and UK charts in March of that year. It was the first record the celebrated drummer, Sly Dunbar, ever played on.

The London International Ska Festival featured 37 bands and DJs from 11 countries, showcasing the very best Ska has to offer from its roots in American rhythm and blues, to the Jamaican originators, their progression into rock steady and Reggae, through 2 Tone and right until today with 21st century Ska sounds.

Other artistes included Ken Boothe, Bob Andy, Marcia Griffiths and the English Beat just to name a few.