Trip down memory lane!
The first real stageshow of Kingston Kitchen 809, the band formed by Germany's former frontman of The Senior Allstars Dr. Ring-Ding and his Dutch Grover Records labelmates of the Rotterdam Ska Jazz Foundation, that now seems to have been split up just a year after the releaseparty celebrating their debut album, into Ollie Q and The Deep Six and the Kingston Kitchen 809 members, who recently had, with female vocalist Dorien 'Darjeeling' van Meel added to their line up, their latest EP "Black Night ... Bright Morning" released on said Grover Records as the Rotterdam Ska Jazz Foundation, was a big success. Except maybe for the few who came to Amsterdam's Melkweg attracted by the name of Dr. Ring-Ding on the posters and flyers expecting to hear some of his recent dancehall tunes as released on Germaican Records.

Kingston Kitchen 809 (Photo : Gemma Plum).

But this night was all about a trip down memory lane. With instrumentals from Rotterdam Ska Jazz Foundation's debut album "Shake Your Foundation", Dr.Ring-Ding giving his crooning style all freedom in Elvis Presley's 1966 tune "City By Night" that was featured in his 1967 musical-movie "Double Trouble", "Bad Company" from Dr. Ring-Ding & The Senior Allstars second album "Ram Di Dance" and the already 10 years old tune "Big Man" from their debut album "Dandimite" as well as Dr. Ring-Ding recent reworking of Lord Kitchener's "The Needle (a.k.a. Dr. Kitch)", the rare 1965 on Justin Yap's Top Deck label released Skatalites/Roland Alphonso tune "China Clipper", a Jamaicanized version of the New Orleans standard "St. James Infirmary Blues", as well as one of my all time favorite Jamaican tunes, Prince Buster's 1966 "Hard Man Fe Dead". Beautiful renditions of tunes by some of Jamaica's greatest singers as well, Delroy Wilson's 1968 / Slim Smith & The Uniques' 1972 "Rain From The Skies" and Jackie Opel's rather slack, already for Dr. Ring & The Senior Allstars farewell album "Big Up" recorded 1965 Studio One tune "Push Wood", but also an adaptation of Michel LeGrand's "The Windmills Of Your Mind" famous from the movie "The Thomas Crown Affair" played back to back with the Skatalites' "Eastern Standard Time". And a never before played yet already years old self-penned entertaining song by Dr. Ring-Ding "7 Days" and again a tune from "Ram Di Dance" "Call 809" before having a go at the other Mr. Rocksteady Ken Boothe's 1968 Studio One scorcher "When I Fall In Love". Another Top Deck Skatalites tune comes along "China Town" before a rocksteady version is performed of ! AC/DC ! 's "You Shook Me All Night Long" from their 1980 "Back In Black" followup to "Highway To Hell", probably making this the strangest rocksteady tune ever, but beware: it sounds real good, and it had the whole audience singing along.

The show is closed with a tune describing the AC/DC cover best, Prince Buster's 1963 tune "Madness". A very fine stage debut for Kingston Kitchen 809, that gets its well deserved encore, and does so by once again highlighting the powerful horn section that stood out all night, of the Rotterdam Ska Jazz Foundation's Bijleveld brothers, with Arjen Bijleveld on trombone, alongside Dr. Ring-Ding, who must've been dreaming about double barreling with his trombone on stage after all these dancehall shows, and brother Sybren Bijleveld on saxophones, as well as the solid backing provided by the other members of Kingston Kitchen 809, in another tribute to the founders of this / our music: the Skatalites, before closing really for the evening with a fine rendition of the ever-popular "Shame & Scandal". For me it's certain that we will see Kingston Kitchen 809 build a large fanbase, and return to Dutch stages.

Text & Photos : Souljah

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