Introducing… King Zepha & The Bluebeat Renaissance Interview
Redstar73 Blog: Please can you introduce your band. When was it started? What about your name?
King Zepha: The band is called King Zepha. We are a 7-piece band and we formed about a year ago. The name actually comes from the make and model of my tenor saxophone (King Zephyr). I changed the spelling to avoid any copyright infringements!
Redstar73 Blog: You have just released your debut album. Tell us more about it!
King Zepha: Our debut album was released in June on Ginhouse Records. It is a double album (22 tracks) and it’s available from http://kingzepha.bandcamp.com/releases as a double CD or a digital download. The first CD features 9 original songs, 2 dubs and an instrumental cover of Desmond Dekker’s Isrealites. We recorded a lot of the album ourselves, straight onto tape in the back of our transit van. The second disc is a live recording from Smokestack nightclub in Leeds.
Redstar73 Blog: Whats up next for King Zepha?
King Zepha: We’re just about to finish our European tour with a show tonight at Matt & Phreds in Manchester. We started recording our second album in Amsterdam last week. We’re going to record some more new songs in Leeds this autumn and we’re hoping to finish off the album in Amsterdam next April, with a view to release it in May or June. We’ve also got quite a few shows coming up, including Al’s Dime Bar in Bradford on 4 September, Moortown Social Club in Leeds on 25 September, Unity Works in Wakefield on 9 October, Dumfries and Galloway Ska & Reggae Club on 12 December and The Source Collective in Carlisle on 13 December.
Redstar73 Blog: Where do you think ska is heading?
King Zepha: Ska seems to be growing in popularity again. There seems to be a lot of new ska bands popping up in the north of England, such as Baked A La Ska, Mancheska and The Indecision. I’ve noticed quite a few old Jamaican ska records being used in TV commercials recently as well. I hope that this apparent revival in ska music continues to grow on the same scale that it did in the late 70s and early 80s with the 2-tone movement but, whether it does or not, there are still a lot of loyal and enthusiastic ska fans out there who continue to support the UK ska scene and we’re looking forward to meeting them all!