Bluekilla – Ska Is Our Business Interview
Redstar73 Blog: You started back in 1985. Anyone left from the original line up? How was the Ska scene back in 1985? Any other bands playing Ska in that time?
Amedeo: There are still two members left from the original five piece suit. Our drummer Fiebig and our bassman Guido. Chris (lead guitar), a third original member left the band in 2003.
There was no Ska scene in 1985. Bluekilla startet playing gigs later, around 1986 or something. I can’t remember any Ska concert around that time. All bands had split up or where in a start up process. The last Ska concert I remember in the early/mid eighties was THE UNTOUCHABLES from the States, and it was a lousy presentation of a test-tube band trying to imitate some notorious british bands. In those days the SKATALITES’ “Return of the Big Guns” couldn’t get anybody moving on the dancefloor. JUDGE DREAD’s 1985 album “Not Guilty” was a terrible misstep into bad taste disco. 1985 was a musical wasteland, Ska was dead until its rebirth in 1989.
Redstar73 Blog: What were the highlihgts? To mine mind are coming your tours in ex-Jugoslawia and Australia. Could you tell us more about both tours.
Amedeo: From the point of playing a gig the most remarkable highlights have always been our CD release parties and jubilee events in our hometown Munich. Of course we had countless gigs abroad that we still remember today. Those tours you mentioned have rather been milestones in the evolution of the band. 1997 in Yugoslavia, we realized that we can rely on eath other in even difficult and dangerous situations. Australia on the other side was just a massive effort with 11 shows in 18 days only on Thursdays and weekends. It was like a big trip in a Carlos Castagneda book. At the end we had to realize that one of us slid away from our conglomerate.
Redstar73 Blog: You always make a statement against fascism. How importartant is this for you? Did you ever had any problems at shows?
Amedeo: It is the most important thing in out lives, to make statements against fascism in all situations of our lives. On stage and on our records, we have the chance to make a statement which is heard by other people. That’s why we never stop doing so. In the 1990s there were a lot of problems with neofascists in Germany and we had to deal with all that crap on some of our gigs. Some people thought Ska is the perfect playground for their sick ideology. in the 2000s thing got better but right now we must wittnes the return of nationalism and rascism in all shapes all over Europe. It never stops being essential to make yourself clear how you think about these matters.
Redstar73 Blog: You have played some shows in France and England this summer. How was the experience?
Amedeo: Extremely cool! We never where a band that was invited to play on festivals a lot. If you have no booking agency, it is hard to get a foot into that door. Festivals mostly work out their line up with a single booking agency, which wants to have as much bands as possible engaged. If a festival wants a big gun, they have to take the waterpistols as well.
Therfore wewere extremely pleased by the enthusiasm of those people in Toulouse and in England, who brought us to their countries. On the other hand it wouldn’t have been possible without the help of a german organisation, helping us to cover some of the travel costs. WE’ll see how many times we can repeat trips like that.
Redstar73 Blog: I really like your Dub stuff like ‘River Style’ from the album ‘Ska is our business’. Why don’t you do a full Dub album?
Amedeo: I have put down all the dub cuts on all of our albums and of course I always had in mind to do a BLUEKILLA IN DUB album with either all the dubs we released and also some unreleased ones or doing a dub version of our BACK TO SKATALONIA album. I even have worked on such a version album but at the end you need someone to release this stuff and I never found someone who was interested. If I meet a dub infected Ska head in my life who wants to take that risk, there’ll be a Dr. Deadlock in Dub LP.
Redstar73 Blog: Any chance of a new album? Any other plans for the future?
Amedeo: Not at the moment. Everything is possible though.
Redstar73 Blog: Give us your Top5 Skasongs.
Amedeo: Besides my favourite Bluekilla songs? No particular order and ever changing:
Nightboat to Cairo (Madness)
Gangsters (The Specials)
Split Personality (Toots Hibbert & The Skatalites)
Big Six (Judge Dread)
Da kommt der Wahnsinn (Lila Sterila)
Redstar73 Blog: Where do you think ska is heading?
Amedeo: Where Rockabilly and other small and “unimportant” genres of the 60s 70s 80s youth culture is heading. As a vegetable in a warm and cosy niche.
Redstar73 Blog: Last words!
Amedeo: Think global but don’t forget to support your local Ska scene and breweries.