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News

Neville Staple Band Confirmed for Vale Earth Fair

News story posted on: Tue, 28th May 2019
Neville Staple Band

Vale Earth Fair celebrates 40th Anniversary of 2 Tone

Following a tough year for the Vale Earth Fair last year, where poor weather made a big impact, the Channel Islands longest running festival returns at the end of August. Once again a strong line up of live music is promised, and the ink has dried on the contract with our first headline act.

Not for the first time the Vale Earth Fair Collective has managed to secure a living legend for the festival, with the Neville Staple Band performing on Sunday 25th August at the Vale Castle.

Neville Staple is best known as one of the front men of The Specials, Fun Boy Three and Special Beat, and is also known as the Original Rude Boy. He is credited with changing the face of pop music not only once but twice. He celebrates a super 40-year career in the music business from the early days with The Coventry Automatics and his Jah Baddis Sound System, before taking to the stage with The Specials during the famous ‘Clash’ tour.

Neville states, “I remember the massive reactions to the hit songs like Ghost Town, Too Much Too Young and Gangsters and fans still write to me about the impact of those songs. The way we brought ska to the mainstream was by mixing Jamaican music with the English style, which at the time was punk. A lot of young bands are now putting their own spin on ska. It’s all good - the music just makes you want to dance. Even when singing about tough times, every-day things or bad things, the beat and the rhythm makes you want to move. I turn all our live shows into a massive party. The crowd love to sing along to all the tracks!”

“I can vouch for this” said Rob Roussel, Vale Earth Fair Collective Member, “I saw Neville Staple play a few years ago at Rebellion Festival, and he stole the show, really getting the audience involved in his set. It was great fun, and that’s partly why I was so keen to get him booked for the Vale Earth Fair – the Neville Staple Band were simply the best act all weekend”.

What is more, Neville’s appearance in Guernsey coincides with the 40th anniversary of 2-Tone records, whose legacy is huge. 2-Tone fused traditional ska music with punk rock attitude, energy and musical elements. The movement helped to transcend and defuse racial tensions in Thatcher-era Britain. The black and white chequered imagery of 2-Tone has become almost as famous as the music itself. It’s influence is so massive there is now a 2-Tone Village in Coventry, where it all began, with a museum dedicated to the movement.

Neville Staple continues to write and produce music and along with his wife and manager, Christine ‘Sugary’ Staple. He works with schools, charities, university and youth groups providing talks, performance tips, music lesson guest-tuition and fund-raising activities. In his hometown of Coventry he is celebrated as a Living Legend, working with the Lord Mayor to support Coventry in winning the ‘City of Culture 2021’. Neville and his wife continue to work with inner-city children on various creative projects. Neville’s work is regularly screened on mainstream TV, and he has been in the news again recently with the release of a single titled ‘Put Away Your Knives’ in tribute to his grandson who was stabbed to death in September last year.

Neville said the song was dedicated his grandson "and to everyone else who has been affected by violent crimes". The song is a remake of A Message To You Rudy and highlights the "pain and the anger" inflicted on families. "It's time we take back some control and teach the youth right from wrong and the consequences of their actions." The ska singer and his wife Christine 'Sugary' Staple collaborated with Dandy Livingstone on the new track.

Neville Staple continues to be a forerunner of the ska movement and continues to thrill audiences with his own excellent band at venues and festivals worldwide.

There’s still some work to be done to finalise the line-up for this year, but other acts confirmed for this year’s Vale Earth Fair include Nessi Gomes, Electric Shakes, Track Not Found and Lord Vapour. There will be a number of fundraisers in the month’s leading up to the Vale Earth Fair, and advance tickets for the festival, which takes place at the Vale Castle on Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th August, are on sale now here.