Update: As the comments below point out, The Specials are denying any possibility of a reunion with Dammers.
No other act in the world arguably has quite the soap opera-esque reunion history like the kings of ska, The Specials. By our count, there’s been at least three reunion lineups since that magical original lineup. So, when the Daily Star (via ContactMusic) revealed that the band would be reuniting, you can understand our initial hesitance. But with word that keyboardist and main songwriter Jerry Dammers might be back in the fold, we’re skanking up and down the street.
The original lineup did begin playing together in 2008, the first occurrence since breaking up in 1984. While the invitation always went out, Dammers sat out because he felt the other members had booted him out in the first place. While there’s no official word from The Specials camp, according to Graham “Suggs” McPherson, the lead singer of ska giants Madness and friend of both Dammers and Specials Terry Hall, a reunion of the two sides is looking possible. As the man in the middle, Suggs recently shared his insight:
“We have been talking about playing with The Specials this year but the problem for us is that they haven’t had Jerry Dammers in the band,” Suggs told the Daily Star. “We are pals with both camps so kind of caught in the middle. But there’s now talk of us doing a massive festival next year together, and maybe a big tour.”
Again, nothing is official, but Suggs did say that the acts could hit up a couple European festivals to get back into shape.
“The Specials were going to play with us at [last year’s] Madstock in Victoria Park,” Suggs said. “It didn’t happen, but there’s talk of a joint Madstock next year in Finsbury Park before a full tour. Or they will bring back the Fleadh festival in Finsbury and we can play there together.”
We’ll keep you updated when and if they announce any dates. Either way, we’d say dust off your porkpie hat cause it could be epic.