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The Specials Announced As First Act For Womad 2017

The Specials Announced As First Act For Womad 2017

Thursday 6th October, 2016 9:09AM

2tone ska legends The Specials have been revealed as the first act on the bill for next year's Womad festival. The seven-piece, who hail from the UK, will be playing exclusively at Womad during their July visit to these shores, so the festival will be the only chance to catch the iconic group this time round. The full line-up announcement will be made on 18th October, here's the details so far...

17th - 19th March 2017, TSB Bowl of Brooklands, Taranaki

Enjoy some Specials classics...


Every year, WOMAD scours the planet to find the very best mix of the finest musicians to bring to us here in New Zealand.

WOMAD are proud to announce one very special group performing exclusively for the WOMAD New Zealand 2017 festival. Originally formed in 1977, English 2tone and ska legends THE SPECIALS will be gracing the stage at the world's festival held once again at the stunning Brooklands Park and TSB Bowl of Brooklands, New Plymouth.

The Specials, a multi-racial seven-piece band who hailed from the industrial city of Coventry, UK combined the angry, disaffected voice of punk with the wind-your-waist sensibility of ska and reggae to re-define pop music and make Britain dance again and are still, today one of the most influential groups in UK musical history.

The full line up announcement of the 2017 festival will be released on the evening of Tuesday 18th October.

When The Specials reformed in 2008 for a one off surprise performance at the Bestival Festival few would have banked on the band still playing to huge audiences around the world in 2016, but they did. Following the terribly sad loss of drummer and founder member John Bradbury suddenly in December 2015 the band have decided to carry on and continue to fill dancehalls and inspire fans young and old.

With the first tour in 2009 selling out immediately and more dates hurriedly added it was obvious there was a massive demand to see this iconic band who only released two albums in their short career but were one of the most influential groups in UK musical history.

In 1977 The Specials founded the British ska revival craze. They combined highly danceable ska and rocksteady with the energy, political stance and attitude of Punk. A mercurial two and a half years later and it was all over, leaving behind seven top ten singles (two of which went to No.1) and two top five genre-defining albums. Their first single, ‘Gangsters’, released on their own 2tone label in 1979, was their calling card and ‘Ghost Town’, their swan song, encapsulated the political mood in Britain. In between was a larger-than-life reputation for killer sweat-drenched live shows and an attitude that walked like it talked.

Since reforming The Specials have performed at over 200 shows worldwide including (deep breath): Coachella / Live on the Letterman Show (US), Summersonic / Fiji Rocks (Japan), Benecassim (Spain), Lalapalooza Festival, (Chile), Montreal Jazz Festival (Canada), Bluesfest Byron Bay (Australia) as well as countless other worldwide event. In the UK they closed the Olympic Games festival in Hyde Park, played Glastonbury, Isle of Wight Festival amongst others and had several sold out tours.

And now WOMAD New Zealand welcomes the iconic band exclusively to the festival which is held at the stunning New Plymouth site in Taranaki.


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