Discussion in 'In Memorium' started by Bullet, Mar 26, 2019.
Ranking Roger of English Beat passes on
Ranking Roger: The Beat singer dies aged 56
The Beat was one of the prominent 2-tone/ska revival bands. "Mirror in the Bathroom", "Hands Off, She's Mine" and "Ranking Full Stop" are some of my favourite Beat songs. After the Beat dissolved, Ranking Roger formed General Public with fellow The Beat member David Wakeling. They did well in the US with the hit "Tenderness". I thought that song channeled more Motown, which was a thing for Brit pop at the time, than 2-tone/ska revival. But then, one of the earliest The Beat songs was a cover of Smokey Robinson and the Miracles' "Tears of a Clown".
When "Mirror in the Bathroom" was a hit, I used to wonder what effects were used on that guitar part. This was back when all I had was a crappy acoustic and I was still learning the basic chords. One kid in school said it was phaser, another said it had to be a flanger. It was all new and exciting to me.
Another 2-tone/ska revival band from that era, the Specials, had just released a new album with a North American tour to support it. Terry Hall et al have been on quite a few covers of UK music magazines recently. As Roger and Wakeling had been fronting their own version of The Beat and were still performing, I was hoping the two would reunite for a tour or even some new music. Too bad it will not happen. Some of the songs from that genre are still cool stuff to listen to.
Way too soon to go at 56. Cancer sucks.
R.I.P. Ranking Roger
What was it?
It sounded like a flanger to my ears. Can't say I have ever read a Andy Cox interview in guitar magazines, not even when he was in The Fine Young Cannibals.
EDIT: Double post deleted.
Here is a photo of Ranking Roger with The Clash's Joe Strummer.
Sad day. I remember they played in London back in the 80s. REM opened for them. I missed that show. Still regret not changing my plans to this day.
@Boogieman Love to hear others speak with passion about the 2 tone/ska days. The Specials were great. Madness really helped bring the sound mainstream in NA, but they were still too "radio" for me. English Beat and Specials will ALWAYS be my favourite ska bands.
RIP. I remember going to Sam the Record Man on Yonge street to buy their LP and the store was playing Tenderness.
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