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Book About 1964 World's Fair published

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Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for a National Sound by Heather Augustyn has been published by Half Pint Press and released on November 1st. The book is the story of how ska came to America in 1964, including at the Singer Bowl at the World's Fair, and the events surrounding the comprehensive effort. It is a look at the period surrounding Jamaica’s independence on August 6, 1962 when ska music played in yards, dancehalls, and in recording studios while this new nation celebrated. The Jamaican government, tourist and business industry, and newly developing music industry made it their mission to debut this music through events they termed Operation Jump Up. This book is a detailed narrative of that effort and how, for a brief time, ska rivaled the Beatles and the Twist.



Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for a National Sound is the sixth book from Augustyn on Jamaican music and culture. The book features dozens of interviews with musicians, businessmen, and government officials involved in the efforts including the Honorable Edward Seaga who served as Jamaica’s prime minister from 1980 to 1989 and was charged with leading his country’s efforts to promote music and culture in the early 1960s. Other exclusive interviews include Island Records Founder Chris Blackwell; Minister of Information, Youth, Sports & Culture, the Hon. Olivia Grange; vocalist Millie Small of “My Boy Lollipop” fame; Federal Records Engineer Graeme Goodall; band manager and advertising executive Ronnie Nasralla; and musicians Bob Andy, Keith Lyn, Carlos Malcolm, Roy Panton, Lynn Taitt, and others. The book also includes exclusive photographs and memorabilia that supplements personal narratives and archival material.


Augustyn is also author of Alpha Boys’ School: Cradle of Jamaican Music with co-author Adam Reeves, Half Pint Press 2017; Songbirds: Pioneering Women in Jamaican Music, Half Pint Press 2016; Don Drummond: The Genius and Tragedy of the World’s Greatest Trombonist, McFarland 2013; Ska: An Oral History, McFarland 2010; and Ska: The Rhythm of Liberation, Scarecrow Press 2013. She is continuing lecture in the Department of English at Purdue Northwest and she has been invited to speak on Jamaican music at Rototom Sunsplash in Benicassim, Spain; the Institute of Jamaica in Kingston, Jamaica, and throughout the United States. She lives with her husband and two boys in Chesterton, Indiana. Operation Jump Up: Jamaica’s Campaign for a National Sound is available at skabook.com and amazon.com.







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Good for you! Great topic. Thanks for letting the board know.

As I emailed you in May, I spent years traveling the Caribbean with a St Lucian and got a great inside look at the music culture. I started writing you that anecdote, including our smokey visit to Tuff Gong, but got waylaid by a pulmonary embolism and relocation. Figured you were the only person on earth who’d get a kick out of it. If I get a spare nanosecond I will try to find it. Meanwhile, wanna buy a house in South Miami? You can make your own Sparrow’s Hideaway. 

Oh and any PTUers, I’m selling my house at appraised value of $425,000, just in case there are any buyers out there. 

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