The Treasure Isle Ska Albums Collection

What I Think of When I Think of This Artist

The liner notes here are pretty good; this is a Doctor Bird release, that imprint being part of the Cherry Red label, which normally does a very good job with box sets. The booklet tells the story of Duke Reid and the Treasure Isle label, and has some great photographs, as well. There is a very good chance that there is significant overlap between this set and the other single disc ska compilations I own (mostly This is Ska! and This is Ska Too!) but I am pretty sure it doesn’t render either of those completely redundant.

What I Think of This Album

Look, I don’t know how to review this compilation, which is a double disc set of four albums, plus over fifteen bonus tracks. I should probably designate it as a “box set” and thereby excuse it from the purview of this truly idiotic blog. But I keep it in with the regular albums in my collection, and not with the box sets.

The first disc compiles The Birth of Ska (1962) and Latin Goes Ska (1964) – and the track listings appear to be complete. Meanwhile, the second disc contains The Skatalite, whose 1964 incarnation is not fully reproduced here, and Don Drummond Greatest Hits, but the track listing is not consistent with what is on the original 1969 release. BUT, I suspect that there was overlap between the four albums so the compilers just cut what would have been repetitive tracks from the second disc.

This also confirms that despite the credits, this is basically (but not exclusively) a huge Skatalites collection. I am certainly not going to discuss the 58 tracks here, but I will note that one of them is called “I Want My Cock.” If you like ska, this is a pretty awesome package (ahem).

Trivia:  Don Drummond was convicted of murdering his girlfriend, Anita “Margarita” Mahfood (herself a songwriter and performer, as well as a dancer and actor) in 1965. Drummond had severe mental health issues and was sent to an asylum upon his conviction, where he died four years later.

While the Skatalites’ roster is a difficult thing to pin down, several legendary members have passed, like Tommy McCook (1998), Rolando Alphonso (1998), Lloyd Brevett (2012), and Lloyd Knibb (2011).

The Best Thing About This Album

58 tracks of classic ska.

Release Date

1962 (Birth of Ska); 1964 (The Skatalite and Latin Goes Ska); 1969 (Don Drummond Greatest Hits); 2019 (reissue)

The Cover Art

Not terribly innovative, but I guess it’s nice to see the original album art.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Proudly powered by WordPress | Theme: Baskerville 2 by Anders Noren.

Up ↑