On Saturday, August, 31, 2013, The English Beat headlined Red 7 in Austin. Dave Wakeling and his bandmates along with supporting acts, Rude King and Heart and Soul Sound System, fought the sweltering heat to rock the crowd with their ska and reggae rhythms. Wakeling and crew were well prepared for the thermal onslaught with a barrage of liquids on stage. Wakeling himself had two tall boys, a can of Red Bull, a bottle of Gatorade, and two bottles of Fiji water. As the show progressed, the sweat came pouring down from both The English Beat and the crowd as everybody skanked the night away.
The English Beat were in tight form despite the hot Texas night. The set began with "Rough Rider," "Hands off...She's Mine," and "Twist and Crawl." Other notable songs were the cover of The Staples Singers song "I'll Take You There" and "I Confess." The English Beat continued playing for nearly and hour and a half before ending the night with "Mirror in the Bathroom."
The English Beat consists of guitarist and frontman, Dave Wakeling. Wakeling was in a good mood and was right at home on stage as he smiled and bantered with the crowd. Antonee First Class brought his toasting skills to the set, giving the band that genuine Jamaican flavor. Drummer Rhythmm Epkins moved around the kit effortlessly as him and bassist, Roger Bueno, laid down danceable beat after danceable beat. Members Matt Morrish and Kevin Lum provided an additional layer of sound with their soulful saxophone and keyboard playing.
The English Beat continue their tour with dates in Colorado. Dave Wakeling and company will be at Rawkus in Colorado Springs on September 4 and at Ska Brewing on September 7. From there, the band will finish out September with a string of dates in California. More tour dates are listed at www.davewakeling.com.
If you like what you have seen and read, stay connected and feel free to follow me on Twitter at @drumsinsocks. Special thanks to The English Beat, Red 7, and Austin Retro Music Examiner Rebecca Chulew for her work behind the lens.