Jamaica became an independent country in 1962 and for the past 50 years has been an international musical powerhouse, moving from ska to rock steady to reggae, roots and dancehall and beyond. General Moses (Legends of Ska) joined Brad Wrolstad on this week’s African Rhythms for a two hour survey of the evolution of Jamaican music featuring cuts from Prince Buster, Derrick Morgan, Alton Ellis, The Ethiopians, Desmond Dekker, Freddie McGregor, Black Uhuru, Jacob Miller and a host of others.

May Day/May 1st the international workers day—-born int e US in 1890 out of the fight for the 8-hour day: what does it mean in 2012? How do the immigrant rights marches—-begun in 2006—-intersect with US labor movement?

4/26 in a nutshell…

Ya want Mutant Frogs? Ya got ‘em! Our gift to Live from Studio 5’s Doug the Thug, titled Ska from Studio 5, leads off a 4(+1)@4 consisting mostly of tracks from the Frogs’ debut Warts ‘n’ all. The GotchaSKAllipop for 4/26 is the creation of Erikka & Margarita Brogier, from their album Koritsia tis Epohis. We’re lovin’ the Prince Fatty & the Mutant Hifi release Return of Gringo, which provided us with three of our 3rd-hour’s rockin’est cuts! If Los Straitjackets were a ska band… well, you get the picture! Sherwood B. Funn re-discovers Ken Nordine in hour 2, tossing “Looks Like It’s Going to Rain” into a wonderfully bizarre mix involving The Ventures’ (In Space, of course… ) “Fear (main title from One Step Beyond)” which we’re sure to reprise one of these weeks. The “Ooh” got caffeinated by the Mango Jones Orchestra (“Cof-feeee Streeee-eet!”) …as if The Techniques’ hyperactive “I Love You” weren’t energetic enough to do the job!

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Some of Paco’s most virtuosic flamenco playing, and some amazing inside information from Susana di Palma on the feat of finally getting Zorro onto the stage.

This week we have DJs Miguel Vargas, Terrell Lamar, and birthday spoken word artist, Rodrigo Sanchez Chavarria…

Energy Brat from Youth Radio, Clean Dirt by Abby Wendle, Forest to Desert by Sarah Boothroyd, & The Mystery of the Mad Minnows from Power Records

Charlie Parr and I chatted via phone for a while.

We listened to lots of tunes, including new releases by Alejandro Escovedo, Phantom Blues Band, The Union Suits, and Teague Alexy.

If you’d like to see the songs we listened to today, just click the “more” button and you’ll be taken to the playlist page. From there, you’ll also be able to listen to the show.