Rastamonday – “Rocksteady” (Alton Ellis)

“Alton Ellis was best known for his innovation of ‘rocksteady’ and was often referred to as the “Godfather of Rocksteady”. By the mid 1960s, ska was moving on and the beat was slowing down to rocksteady and becoming associated with the violent rude boy subculture in Jamaican dancehalls. Many artists made records referring to the rude boys, including Ellis, although his records were consistently anti-rudie, including “Don’t Trouble People”, and “Cry Tough”, in contrast to artists such as Bob Marley, whom Ellis blamed for glorifiying the rudies. Recording with The Flames, Ellis scored big hits and “Rock Steady”, was the first song to refer to the name of the new genre. As rocksteady dominated the Jamaican airwaves for the next two years, Ellis continued to score hits for Treasure Isle, working with artists such as Lloyd Charmers, Phyllis Dillon and The Heptones. During the late 1960s and early 1970s, Ellis recorded for some of Jamaica’s top producers, having two huge hits with Lloyd Daley in “Deliver Us” and “Back to Africa” with Bunny Lee, Keith Hudson, and Herman Chin Loy. Ellis toured the United Kingdom in the 1967 with Ken Boothe and Studio One session band the Soul Vendors and on his return to Jamaica he worked with Dodd, recording the tracks that would be released as his debut album Alton Ellis Sings Rock & Soul.” Fulljoy this classic track that inspired an entire generation of musicians. Bless up!

Alton Ellis – “Rocksteady

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