In Defense of Ska November 2021 Newsletter
In Defense of Ska is hitting the road! I will be joining Mustard Plug, Buck-O-Nine, and Omnigone on their 10-day west coast run in January. I will open each show with a reading from my chapter, and then I’ll be hanging out all night at the merch booth, selling books and chatting about ska. Dates, venues, and links to purchase tickets are available here. Hope to see you there!
Oh, and by the way, Omnigone is Adam’s band. That means if you’ve been dying to get your photo taken with the greatest podcast duo in history, you CAN! Tap us on the shoulder and say, “TAKE A PHOTO WITH US” and we will do it. To help both Adam and I cover gas expenses on this tour, we are selling limited edition “In Defense of Ska” shirts. These will NOT be available at the shows. The place you get them is here. The only time you can get them is NOW.
And so, on with our podcast recap. November was a great month for “In Defense of Ska.” Let’s dig in, shall we?
To start things out, we brought on Jamie Woolford from the band Animal Chin. While Animal Chin wasn’t a huge band in the 90s, their music has held up quite well. Several guests have brought them up during interviews, including Patrick Stump. Our conversation with Jamie was interesting because clearly he is working through some ska shame and has had a hard time accepting just how good Animal Chin was. I think we helped him. Hopefully, we will be seeing him skanking at ska shows next year.
We talked to Screaming Females, an indie-punk group I’ve loved for a while that I never imagined I’d chat with about ska. The interview was prompted by them announcing that they recorded a cover of The Selecter’s “On My Radio.” They also tagged us in the announcement, so clearly they were dying to be on “In Defense of Ska.” Their ska knowledge was limited, but I enjoy hearing how people in other scenes perceive ska. Marissa described walking into a Toasters show and seeing people “doing backflips” and “being acrobatic.” Love it.
While I promoted my book, I somehow convinced the producers at Bullseye to let me yammer on about MU330’s Crab Rangoon. The host, Jesse Thorn, is not a big ska fan. However, I learned Jordan Morris, his co-host on a different podcast, Jordan, Jesse, Go is all about the ska. Jordan is also the author of the excellent graphic novel Bubble. And, I also learned (from a listener) after we aired the episode that he has a disturbing character named Cotton Candy Randy. Go watch it now. Jordan told us about growing up in the OC ska scene in the 90s and then rediscovering the music during the pandemic.
We closed the month out with a conversation with an old friend, Jason Thinh. He played in The Chinkees, led the Asian Man Records punk band Short Round and also started the lesser-known—but awesome—group Marathon States. It was a delight to catch up with Jason. I’m still puzzling over some of the stories he told us. Apparently, he would ask women if they would pose in photos with him as they held him like a baby, and they said yes! Also, he and Adam would randomly slap each others’ faces for no reason. Oh to be young again
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