Clue J & His Blues Blasters

Clue J & His Blues Blasters
Origin Kingston, Jamaica
Genres R&B, calypso, ska
Years active late 1950searly1960s
Labels Worldisc
Associated acts The Skatalites
Past members Cluett Johnson
Ernest Ranglin
Emmanuel "Rico" Rodriguez
Roland Alphonso
Theophilus Beckford
Aubrey Adams
Arkland "Drumbago" Parks
Ken Williams
Herman Sang
Keith Stoddart
Lloyd Mason
Monty Alexander

Clue J & His Blues Blasters were a Jamaican band of the late 1950s and early 1960s led by Cluett Johnson, who were one of the first bands to play ska. Several of the band's members went on to join The Skatalites.


Formed in the late 1950s, the band was led by double bassist Cluett Johnson (aka Clue J),[1] and other members included Ernest Ranglin (guitar), Emmanuel "Rico" Rodriguez (trombone), Roland Alphonso (tenor saxophone), Theophilus Beckford (piano), Aubrey Adams (piano/organ), and Arkland "Drumbago" Parks (drums).[2] The band was the first to make records in Jamaica, their earliest releases being calypso or R&B, such as "Shuflling Jug", and were promoted on producer Clement "Coxsone" Dodd's Downbeat sound system and released on his Worldisc label.[2] Johnson is sometimes credited with creating the term "ska", after telling Ranglin to "play it like ska, ska, ska", but this is disputed.[2] Most of the band members went on to greater fame in bands such as The Skatalites.[2] Johnson relocated to Montego Bay where he performed at a hotel until his death.[3]


  1. Barrow, Steve & Dalton, Peter (2004) The Rough Guide to Reggae, 3rd edn., Rough Guides, ISBN 1-84353-329-4, p. 24
  2. 1 2 3 4 Larkin, Colin (1998) The Virgin Encyclopedia of Reggae, Virgin Books, ISBN 0-7535-0242-9, p. 63
  3. Wilson, Claude (2000) "Where are they now?", Jamaica Gleaner, 3 September 2000, retrieved 6 September 2009

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