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Baker's Dozen

Roots Rock Riot: Benji Webbe Of Skindred's Favourite Albums
Dom Smith , May 27th, 2014 10:00

The alternative metallers' frontman gives Dom Smith his Baker's Dozen of top LPs ahead of a summer of festival sets in support of their new album, Kill The Power

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The Specials – The Specials
With The Specials, for me, it wasn't just the music. I was laying down, and I must have been about 13, and there was this documentary on BBC Two, and I'll never forget it as long as I live. There were these guys who dressed like my dad, with the hats and the two-toned suits, and they put this twist on it, see. They had the skinhead look as well. All of a sudden they started playing this music, and it's stuff that I know my father had. My father got these same records, but they didn't sound as punk. Seeing this band just made me sit up, and I knew then, from that point, that if I was going to grow up and be in a band, it was going to have black people and white people and have this real sound of unity. I fell in love with ska then, from watching this documentary about 2 Tone in Coventry. I started stealing my dad's clothes and making them smaller for myself. I wanted to look cool and be a rudeboy!

I recognised some of the songs, and they would do a lot of covers from Jamaica. Like 'A Message To You Rudy' and stuff like that. My dad had that record since I was crawling, and all of a sudden I saw this white guy singing it with real attitude. When I first saw the band, I was a punk rocker. I had the painted yellow bondage trousers and a Sid Vicious T-shirt. My father wouldn't let me cut my hair because he used to cut it for me, so I had to put loads of stuff in it to spike it up. Anyway, I remember watching this documentary, and thinking, "I want to be a part of this movement." I took all of my punk records, and I swapped them for a load of stuff, for a pork pie hat and a 2 Tone wristband. I went and got The Specials album. I'd seen the documentary on the Wednesday night, and by the Saturday, I'd come back from town with all the records.