Known as The Original Rude Boy, Neville Staple is a legendary frontman and co-founder of The Specials, Fun Boy Three, 2-Tone and the Special Beat with Ranking Roger. 2019 marks the 40th anniversary of Neville’s successful music career, and also for The Specials and 2Tone Records. Over the past four decades, Staple has picked up multiple awards, including from MOJO and NME, as well as Gold, Silver and Platinum discs. Today he co-fronts The Neville Staple Band together with award-winning wife Sugary Staple.
The Staples are a permanent fixture of the widely regarded and enormously active UK ska scene, performing regularly at clubs and massive festivals. They are also well known for their charitable work and social activism. In her own right, Sugary Staple is known for spearheading the Skamouth series and also as an actress, vocalist end event promoter for over 30 years,
“We have had a lot of heartache over recent months and so, in contrast to our recent ‘Put Away Your Knives’ single, which was aimed at a very serious subject affecting us on a very personal level, this track is fun and lively and relates to all hardworking people, who just keep going regardless of what is happening around them – and especially those who tend to work hard to please or help others. We’ve also ensured this is a stomp-along, upbeat, 2Tone ska song, hailed as a summer hit by many ‘sneak-peak’ media reviewers,” says Neville Staple.
Neville and Sugary Staple co-wrote this song with Charlie Organaire (a.k.a. Charles Cameron), best friend and colleague to ska pioneer Prince Buster. He was involved in many of the legend’s hit songs, as well as writing his own music and working with Prince Buster’s son Sultan.
“We met Charlie when he accompanied Sultan on a visit to my own Skamouth Festival and we’ve all been great friends ever since. He calls me a “one women army” (his words) because he said I worked so hard. This is how this lovely song melody started out, with Charlie playing his harmonica and his observant description of me running ragged, while managing to keep things running smoothly, even when chaos and problems were erupting behind the scenes,” explains Sugary Staple.
“Neville and I got to work on this song soon after and wrote the rest of the music and lyrics. This song really is about all those who put lots of effort in, work their socks off and juggle jobs, life and sometimes performances and public engagements, even with personal troubles going on. They often get very little reward too, other than making others happy. That’s me,” she laughs, noting, “In fact, that is a lot of people in this mega busy modern world of fast tracking! But we sing about it with a fun dancing tune to let your hair down to”
The Neville Staple Band recently released the single ‘Put Away Your Knives’, a 2-Tone influenced punky ska and reggae mix. This is a cry to young people involved in knife crime, motivated by a tragic event that struck their family in September 2018 – the fatal stabbing of Neville’s 21-year-old grandson Fidel Glasgow.
Here Neville and Sugary Staple are joined by British-Jamaican reggae pioneer Dandy Livingstone, who penned ‘Rudy, A Message to You’, a big hit for The Specials (as ‘A Message to You, Rudy’).
These singles arrive hot on the trail of their new ‘Rude Rebels’ album, released via Cleopatra Records in autumn of 2018 with contributions by The Specials’ original guitarist Roddy Radiation (a.k.a. Roddy Byers).
Catch The Neville Staple Band on tour with The Undertones throughout May and onwards on their own awesome steam at venues and festivals throughout the summer. June also brings several celebrations for the 40th Anniversary of 2-Tone, together with The Specials’ Jerry Dammers as DJ and Beat Goes Bang (comprised of members of The Beat, General Public and Dexys Midnight Runners). Tickets can be obtained at http://www.originalrudeboy.co.uk/live-dates