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Ska Bands Enter NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert Contest

You might be familiar with NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series. Typically, it involves a musician or band performing at or around a desk in NPR’s offices. Part of the appeal is the band performing in tight quarters.

About a year ago, NPR was paid a visit by pioneering ska guitar player Ernest Ranglin. You’ve heard him play on Millie Small’s “My Boy Lollipop.” Watch him run his fingers so effortlessly in the video below.

Given the popularity of the series, NPR ran a contest this past January asking bands to submit their own Tiny Desk Concert video. Vanyaland has a great round up of many of the Boston bands represented this year. We decided to focus on the ska acts that entered.

The Snails – “Back Home”

Rootsy rocksteady act The Snails performed what they’re calling a “stripped down” version of a song that will appear on an upcoming release.

The New Limits – “Part of Me”

My own band, The New Limits, submitted this reggae jam filmed in our Allston rehearsal space. This song can also be found on our recent “Live at WEMF” record.

The Georgetown Orbits – “The Climb”

This Seattle rocksteady band delivers a soulful introduction to their sound. The song appears on their 2014 album “Third Rock Steady.”

We couldn’t find many more. I’m guessing the same reasons it’s tough to squeeze a ska band on a stage make it a challenge to film something like this on short notice. If we missed any, let us know in the comments!

Jacob Wake Up!

Jacob Wake Up! is managing editor of Boston Ska (dot) net. He's been going to ska shows since high school and never looked back. Jake lives in Roslindale and works in communications by day. You can see him perform with The New Limits or strike up conversation with him at a local ska show.

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