TMT-My Punk Side
I have a confession. While there are plenty of songs on my playlist that any one person could take issue with, overall anyone who happens to be riding along with me would find a song or two to sing along with. It’s just that my music taste is so varied, it’s easy to please. I know a lot of people have issue with some of the younger female singers (and I don’t know why. I’m not ashamed to admit that several of the emerging stars my daughter likes are actually talented!), and I could fill this post with songs from the likes of Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, or Taylor Swift, for example but I won’t.
Instead, I want to share a musical guilty pleasure I have. I’m not ashamed to admit to it, and I really should put some on my playlist, but I’ve been disappointed overall with what I have found in the recent past.
My guilty pleasure? Ska. It’s a blend of Caribbean music with calypso, American jazz, and R&B. It was the kind of music the skinheads listened to when I was in my mid-20s, which meant the 90’s (not the Bob Marley kind, though I love me some Marley too). No, this type of ska is sometimes considered punk music, though its different from what most people consider punk music (The Cure comes to mind). Some of my best memories come from finding a free ska concert somewhere and having fun with my mostly male skinhead friends. Also, on that? There’s more than one type of skinhead. There’s the nazi, which are deplorable, and then there’s the regular head-shaving, flight jacket wearing, Doc Maarten footed kind (the SHARPs–Skinheads Against Racial Prejudice) that I called friends. They have a special kind of loyalty that continues even to this day. In fact, I gave my almost 25 year old flight jacket to my oldest for his 17th birthday. They introduced me to a lot of things I felt a kinship with, but ska music is probably the best.
I will be adding these songs to my playlist soon (I just need to clear out some space!)…
Do you remember the good old days before the ghost town?
We danced and sang, and the music played in a de boomtown
Life was getting hectic
And things were unexpected
When I first received your call
Sublime is probably the most famous “Ska” band around. Here is one of their best.
Tell Sanchito that if he knows what is good for him he best go run and hide,
Daddy’s got a new .45,
And I won’t think twice to stick that barrel straight down sancho’s throat,
Believe me when I say that I got somethin’ for his punk ass.
Bet you didn’t know No Doubt is considered “ska” too? I did, though I have doubters (snort) in my midst. Here’s one of my favorites:
I really feel
That I’m losing my best friend
I can’t believe
This could be the end
The saddest part of this post is that here where I grew up, in the metro DC area, we had our own brand of SKA. DC Ska consisted of such great groups like The Ratchet Boys, The Skunks, Eastern Standard Time, and my personal favorite (Man I have been looking for years for songs from this band!). Checkered Cabs. Its sad because the music isn’t widely sold, CDs are hard to come by, and it’s rare to find a ska performance, even in DC, anymore. Because the music catered to skinheads, mods, and such, fights often broke out and clubs stopped letting the ska bands play. I wish I had opportunity to spend more time listening to these bands play.
I did have the privilege of hearing Checkered Cabs live and to this day, I wish I had a CD. I fell in love with them that much.
“You Told Me.” by Checkered Cabs (PS. No fights broke out at the show I attended.)
Here’s another DC Ska band that, along with Checkered Cabs, opened for other ska bands, primarily The Toasters. With Miss understood, here’s The Allstonians.
To close out today’s mixtape, I leave you with a song that is not particularly ska, and I’m not even sure how many hits they had beyond this song. I just know that its a guilty pleasure, mostly because I love watching my kids jam out to it. In closing, I give you…
I’m a Barbie girl, in the Barbie world
Life in plastic, it’s fantastic!
You can brush my hair, undress me everywhere
And that is another Twisted Mixtape Tuesday hosted by Jen Kehl of My Skewed View.
What’s YOUR musical guilty pleasure?