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Baba Brooks


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Oswald Baba Brooks started his musical career as a trumpet player with the Eric Dean Orchestra in Jamaica in the 1950’s. The Jamaican bands played mostly Folk, Afro, Jazz, they played at clubs, big hotels and sometimes on local radio. This was an exciting scene at the time but began to die out towards the end of the fifties.

Band members began to move into the recording studios in Kingston that were emerging at the time with the advent of the Sound Systems. The records that were produced kept the musicians well-employed. Most big bands began to die out and only a few managed to survive into the sixties and beyond. One such band was Byron Lee, they became the Islands premire band and established many talented musicians including Baba Brooks. He soon became a popular session man working for many of the top record producers and featured on many of the great Ska tracks during the golden period from 1963 - 1967. He was riding high in ‘63 with three hits in the Jamaican charts, Musical Communion, Bank To Bank and his version of Watermelon Man. This was a year before the Skatalies had been formed as a band, with whom he was to play on many occasions.

With Duke Reid he had many records released on his Treasure Isle/Dutchess labels. Teenage Ska was a brilliant driving ska beat track in his instrumental style.


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  • Davadarho

    Searching for Baba Brooks, great ska musician.

    6 May 2:53pm Reply
  • ruder1

    Some of the hardest skankin' ska nusic ever made. He's got some obscure hardcore trad ska.

    2 Jan 2011 Reply
  • Albent

    Fuck =/ I have all his songs as The Skatalites. Maybe Skatalites make some sessions with him, making some covers? Or are the same songs?!

    28 Sep 2010 Reply
  • misterzeb

    Drumbago did "duck Soup", but Baba Brooks rules none the less! He did do "Watermelon Man" and "One Eyed Giant" which are amongst my favourite tunes...

    22 Apr 2009 Reply
  • aughtstar

    Did he really do Duck Soup or was it Drumbago?

    15 Apr 2008 Reply
  • Crazy_DiamonDs

    Oh Thanx

    12 Jul 2007 Reply
  • aughtstar

    Ok! Found one searching for Oswald Baba Brooks. Looks more like a painting, but that's as close as we get.

    22 Apr 2007 Reply
  • aughtstar

    Crap, is that not him? I was gonna thank. I looked everywhere.

    19 Apr 2007 Reply
  • webmechanics

    It's young Prince Buster on photo, not Baba Brooks, isn't it?

    31 Mar 2007 Reply

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