Interview: Dave Wakeling of The English Beat

English Beat-030217-01
Dave Wakeling of The English Beat performs at 9:30 Club on Wednesday, March 1, 2017. (Photo by Ben Eisendrath /Instagram+Twitter: GrillworksBen)

Last week, The English beat performed to a very crowded house at 9:30 Club, and Parklife DC caught the show. (Read our review!) Prior to the show, I had the opportunity to sit down with David Wakeling, the brains behind the band, for a lengthy chat. Born in Birmingham, England, Dave started The Beat there (and took it to the United States where it became known as The English Beat.) Roughly 30 years ago, he migrated to the United States and now resides in Southern California.

Continue Reading

Music Park: English Beat @ 9:30 Club — 3/1/17

English Beat-030217-05 English Beat perform at 9:30 Club on March 1, 2017. (Photo by Ben Eisendrath /Instagram+Twitter: GrillworksBen)

Dave Wakeling arrived in DC Wednesday in good spirits. With a mischievous grin and a boisterous attitude, Dave and his band in The English Beat appeared at 9:30 Club to enthrall a very full house with Dave’s time-tested ska, reggae, and new wave hits, which had the whole room skanking.

Continue Reading

Music Park: English Beat @ 9:30 Club — 10/11/16

English Beat 11
Dave Wakeling performs with The English Beat at the 9:30 Club on Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2016. (Photo by Mickey McCarter)

“This song has been used by two presidential campaigns,” Dave Wakeling said of his cover of “I’ll Take You There” by The Staple Sisters, “and both presidents served two terms! So if you fancy being president of America, it appears that I’m your man! I’ll take you there!”

The number, of course, was used by the presidential campaigns of both Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, but Dave wasn’t overtly political in his appearance at the 9:30 Club on Tuesday, Oct. 11. He and The English Beat got down to performing the 1994 version of “I’ll Take You There,” recorded by Dave’s former band General Public, with vigor.

Continue Reading

Don’t Miss: The English Beat @ Bottle & Cork, 8/28/16 + @ 9:30 Club, 10/11/16

DaveWakeling
Dave Wakeling of the English Beat (Photo by Eugenio Iglesias)

Well, the English Beat recently sold out a show at the 9:30 Club, but I’m going to take a moment any way to remind you of why.

Dave Wakeling, forever Birmingham-born #1 ska singer, is bringing the English Beat around to the 9:30 Club again, this time to open for their friends Squeeze in a dynamite show on Tuesday, Oct. 11. (But wait! They also are playing at nearby Bottle & Cork in Dewey Beach, Delaware! Read on for details.)

The English Beat is on the cusp of releasing its first new album in more than 30 years with its upcoming full length Here We Go Love later this year.

The band of course have a string of well-regarded hits that have formed the backbone of a very successful touring act for quite some time now. Dave and company enjoy stirring live renditions of popular tunes like “Save it for Later,” “Mirror in the Bathroom,” and “Twist and Crawl.”

Remind yourself of the fresh energy of the English Beat with a listen of “Whine & Grine/Stand Down Margaret” on “Rude Boy’s Revenge & Coffee Hour” from a few years ago via Soundcloud:

We at Parklife DC last saw the English Beat at the 9:30 Club on Nov. 25, 2015, and we were mighty impressed!

“The venerable English Beat have been revitalized this year with a new toaster — King Schascha. For a 2-tone band, a toaster isn’t mechanical, but in King’s case, he’s certainly electric,” I wrote. “The reggae rhymer from San Diego effectively got the very full house at the 9:30 Club dancing right away on Wednesday, Nov. 25, paving the way for band leader Dave Wakeling and his time-tested repertoire of ska and reggae. They kicked things off with ‘Rough Rider’ from the debut album by the English Beat, 1980’s I Just Can’t Stop It, and the entire audience was moving and grooving from the very first note.”

If you’re coming to see Squeeze at the 9:30 Club, get there early for the English Beat! There are no tickets available, as the show has sold out. Keep your eyes open for resales (at fair prices) or maybe a last-minute release of any extra tickets the 9:30 Club may be holding back?

Oh, wait, if you cannot wait to see the English Beat, you can catch them at the Bottle & Cork in Dewey Beach, Delaware, on Sunday, August 28. That’s this weekend! What better way to celebrate the waning days of summer than to hit the beach with Dave and company? Tickets for that show are indeed available online (and at the door).

The English Beat
Bottle & Cork
Sunday, August 28
Doors @9pm
$20
21+

The English Beat
Opening for Squeeze
9:30 Club
Tuesday, Oct. 11
Doors @7pm
Sold Out
All ages

Music Park: English Beat @ 9:30 Club — 11/25/15

The English Beat DSC_4294.jpg
Dave Wakeling of The English Beat performs at Bumbershoot 2010 in Seattle on Sept. 6, 2010. (Photo by Dave Lichterman)

Calling all rude boys and rude girls!

The venerable English Beat have been revitalized this year with a new toaster — King Schascha. For a 2-tone band, a toaster isn’t mechanical, but in King’s case, he’s certainly electric.

The reggae rhymer from San Diego effectively got the very full house at the 9:30 Club dancing right away on Wednesday, Nov. 25, paving the way for band leader Dave Wakeling and his time-tested repertoire of ska and reggae. They kicked things off with “Rough Rider” from the debut album by the English Beat, 1980’s I Just Can’t Stop It, and the entire audience was moving and grooving from the very first note.

Continue Reading

Don’t Miss: The English Beat @ 9:30 Club, 11/25/15

bw01
Dave Wakeling (Photo by Bryan Kremkau)

The English Beat are perennial favorites in the DC metro area. They turned up at the State Theatre not long ago, and now they have a show slated for the 9:30 Club.

But wait! Not only are the [English] Beat hitting our premiere concert destination on Wednesday, Nov. 25, they also are preparing to release a new album, tentatively titled Here We Go Love! The ska/reggae collective famously published three albums in the early ‘80s, and they haven’t released a new studio album since Special Beat Service in 1982.

Special Beat Service, of course, spawned some of the English Beat’s greatest hits, such as “I Confess” and “Mirror in the Bathroom,” fueling the capability of Dave Wakeling and company to continuously tour the world for years.

Watch the official video for “Mirror in the Bathroom” on YouTube:

If you haven’t seen the English Beat in a while, or somehow you have never done so (you saved it for later?), this is a perfect opportunity to see them. After all, they are playing the night before a holiday, so you have all of the time in the world to beat to the Beat.

Tickets are available online!

The English Beat
9:30 Club
Wednesday, Nov. 25
Doors @7pm
$25
All ages