Baked a la Ska’s Robin Sunflower on the records that made him want to play ska

Baked a la Ska have been favourites of the festive season here at Band on the Wall for many years, with their eccentric ska reworks the fuel for many a Shake ‘n’ Bake and Christmas knees up. They return on 22nd December for their Ska of Wonder Christmas party, armed with classic tunes and accompanied by DJs Martin the Mod and Coops, who spin tunes throughout the night.

Ahead of the show, we asked band member Robin Sunflower which tunes made him want to play ska and through his selections he explained reggae’s roots in ska and shared a nice anecdote about In the mood for ska. Listen below and in the Spotify playlist.

Lord Tanamo – In the mood for ska

This is number one for me for so many reasons: one, it’s a great song, two, this version is a great one, three, it reminds me of an old Jamaican guy called Guitar Ken (who passed a few years ago), who used to play in the jams at Band on the Wall and around Hulme. This, along with Mona Lisa, was one of his best numbers, and four, my girlfriend asked me to cover this about 20 years ago….we’re married now.

Bob Marley – Judge not

Bob’s first single shows the roots of reggae in ska. Great lyric.

Skatalites – Ska-ra-van

Duke Ellington’s 1930 tune given a fry-up.

Val Bennett- Stranger on the Shore

Acker Bilk’s tune roasted to perfection.

Tommy McCook- Shadow of your smile

Another jazz standard grilled until golden brown.