Jamaican Popular Music Between 1961 and 1965

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The term Ska is used to describe a style of Jamaican popular music between 1961 and 1965 as noted by Kenneth Golang, a traditional ska band consisted of piano, guitars, bass, drums, saxophone and brass.
This essay will discuss the key musical and lyrical characteristics of Ska music. We will briefly examine some of the musical styles that influenced the session musicians and composers working in Jamaica’s recoding industry at the time of the development of Ska. We will then go on to look at the musical and lyrical characteristics of three ska recordings. The first recording will be Derrick Morgan’s Forward March, the second recording this essay will look at will be Prince Busters Al’ Capone which was released in 1964. We will see how Busters recoding of Al Capone was written with much more focus on the instrumentation rather that the song lyrics while still having a clear concept for the song. The author will look at Millie Smalls recording of my boy lollipop a song that went number one in the UK a successful attempted to incorporate Ska’s musical characteristics into commercial popular music. This essay shall then briefly discuss how ska music’s main characteristics where used in conjunction with musical elements from other genres to bring about a revival ska.
When Jamaica gained its independence on August 5th 1962 Ska began to gain worldwide recognition. The sound of Ska music’s Skippy rhythms and jazz-influenced bass lines were heard all over the world transmitted via news coverage and documentation of the significant event of Great Britain granting this small island independence.
Ska developed from a mixture of mature existing styles of music. Mento music, a Jamaican folk music which was performed by a group of usually male ...

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