The very definition of bandwagon jumping mitigated slightly by the fact that the UK’s Symarip (Pyramids near palindrome) were the premier passengers on the Skinhead carriage. With tracks like “Skinhead Jamboree”, “Skin Flint”, “Skinhead Girl” (“Her hair cut short, boots set firm/She was my height, my weight, my size, she wore braces and blue jeans”–WTF?), not to mention the hit title track* and a Nancy Sinatra recast (“These Boots Are Made For Stomping [sic]”), my guess is that this relatively unsubtle take on reggae/ska was big fun in the clubs among the target demographic, with the Skins feeling a certain vindication, even liberation, that comes with recognition however ham-fisted, but the novelty wears thin on Lp for anything more than party listening. Purchased, by coincidence, for the virtual equivalent of 19’11 in 2012 money from my favourite Sandwich chaz, Toots & the Maytals, it ain’t.
The practice of putting Caucasians on the front cover of Lps produced by black people was not new in 1969, but usually the job fell to an attractive blonde female (see Miles Davis, Otis Redding, et al); in fact, the rhetorical point was less arbitrary and more meaningful here.
*This is a version of Derrick Morgan’s “Moon Hop”, though it’s here carelessly credited to Symarip’s singer and keyboardist.