Ska has always been a form of music that just grabs you and takes you for a ride. And the original 2-Tone Rude Boy, Neville Staple, is back to prove that once again. Proving that longevity is a job as well as a blessing, Neville and his band take the tone to the next level with their new track and video titled ‘Put Away Your Knives’. An ode to non-violence speaking from witness and experience, Neville delivers a memorable anthem and foot-stomper that will stick in your head and weigh in your hearts long after that initial listen.
‘Put Away Your Knives’ can be downloaded from iTunes and Amazon. It can also be streamed on Spotify. You can also donate To Victim Support at www.victimsupport.org.uk/get-involved/donate.
About The Neville Staple Band
The Neville Staple Band has released their new single ‘Put Away Your Knives’, a 2Tone influenced punky ska and reggae mix with on-point lyrics addressing the growing knife crime problem in the UK. This is a lyrical and musical cry to young people involved in knife crime, motivated by a tragic event that struck their family in September 2018 – the fatal stabbing of Neville’s 21-year-old grandson Fidel Glasgow.
Here Neville and Sugary Staple are joined by British-Jamaican reggae musician and producer, Dandy Livingstone, who penned ‘Rudy, A Message to You’, which was later a hit for The Specials (as ‘A Message to You, Rudy’). His 1972 hit ‘Suzanne Beware of the Devil’ also reached number 14 on the UK Singles Chart.
This single follows their new ‘Rude Rebels’ album, released via Cleopatra Records in autumn of 2018 with contributions by The Specials’ original guitarist Roddy Radiation (a.k.a. Roddy Byers).
“We are dedicating the song to my grandson Fidel and to everyone else out there, who have been affected by violent crimes. It’s time we take back some control and teach the youth right from wrong, and the consequences of their actions. This song is highlighting the pain and the anger being inflicted on the families too. It asks the youths to just stop, think and put down the knives,” says Neville Staple.
“Even while we were in the studio recording this, my wife Sugary and I became very emotional. It hurts bad when you lose someone so young in the family, but it’s even harder when you know that someone took their life early. I get angry at just how easily the youth find it now, to carry weapons around. They seem to have no thoughts for who they are really hurting, including themselves. It is us, all the generations above them that must step in now and help fix this mess. This disregard for life! No one else is going to sort it out!”
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The Staples are a permanent fixture of the widely regarded and enormously active UK ska scene, performing regularly at clubs and massive festivals. They are also well known for their charitable work and social activism.
Known as The Original Rude Boy, Neville Staple is a legendary frontman and co-founder of The Specials, Fun Boy Three, 2Tone and the Special Beat with Ranking Roger. Over the past four decades, Staple has picked up multiple awards, including from MOJO and NME, as well as Gold, Silver and Platinum discs. Today he fronts The Neville Staple Band together with award-winning wife Sugary Staple, known for spearheading the Skamouth series and also as an actress, vocalist end event promoter for over 30 years,
With 2019 being the 40th anniversary of Neville’s successful music career, and also for The Specials and 2Tone Records, this is a timely release. ‘Put Away Your Knives’ underlines that, not only has violence not gotten better after all these years but that it has actually escalated.
“We talk to young offenders and go to some schools and chat about the seriousness of violent crimes and talk about ways of staying away from it. Some are even young parents themselves! I asked if they would want their child to know that they cut someone or even killed someone. What kind of a role model is that?” asks Sugary Staple.
“If you don’t feel safe going to that place without carrying a weapon, then don’t go to that place. Just don’t go! It can’t be a good place to hang out anyway if weapons are needed. And if you feel pressured into carrying a knife or anything else that’s dodgy, talk to somebody you trust. If this is not your parents, then maybe a cool cousin, uncle or auntie, a grandparent or even a friend. This includes those of you who are groomed into that life and need a way out (forced into being someone you were never meant to be).”
Releasing this song also gives rise to the occasion for Neville and Sugary to highlight the great work that the independent charity Victim Support is doing. By promoting awareness about their services, they are encouraging more support and donations, especially in relation to the help they give to families affected by knife crime.
“Working closely with victims and bereaved families, we know just how destructive these shocking crimes are for everyone impacted. We’re really pleased to be working with Neville Staple and his wife Sugary Staple to help raise awareness of the issue and raise vital funds to allow us, as an independent charity, to continue our work. Families and communities are being devastated by knife crime and it is so important that we all come together to tackle this – organizations, government agencies, and all communities,” stated Diana Fawcett, Chief Officer of Victim Support.
Sugary Staple adds, “I call upon all the ‘good’ young people out there to join forces in saying #PutAwayYourKnives to other friends who you know are carrying. Why not make it a cool thing to share that message and separate yourselves from the negatives and the dangers.”