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When the original line up of The Specials split in 1981 they left behind a legacy which has been unrivalled by a single band since. Aside from combining musical and racial cultures their clothing, musical movement and their own 2-Tone record label (which started the musical careers of the likes of Madness and The Selecter) created a legacy which has lived on for over 40 years. They reformed for a 30th Anniversary Tour in 2009 and created a buzz of excitement for both old and new fans all around the world. 10 years later they are still going strong, now celebrating 40 years of 2-Tone and The Specials.
The Specials Ltd recreate the passion and enthusiasm of the original Specials line up, bringing back memories for those who were there first time around and showing younger fans what they missed. Featuring members of 2 Rude, the long-established band widely known as one of the best ska tribute acts in the UK, The Specials Ltd are a 9-piece band full of energy, excitement and accuracy, performing Specials tracks from the golden era of 1979-1981… ‘Too Much Too Young’, ‘Gangsters’, ‘Ghost Town’, ‘Rat Race’ and many more.
They have quickly begun to wow audiences with their performances and their sold out shows to date include their debut at London’s iconic 100 Club in December 2018.
Colchester Arts Centre - the little church with the big attitude deep in the heart of Essex.
Well that's how we describe it anyway. It sort of works, it at least gives a flavour of what we're about.
Because just how do you describe a venue that can put children's entertainer Palfi the Clown on, on the same day as Cradle of Filth?
Where a Farmer's Market in the morning becomes a comedy club in the evening, where folk enthusiasts can sit happily knitting (and they do!) in the exact same spot a ferocious mosh pit of teenage dancing takes place the following night?
And where the beautiful historic architecture of St Mary's Church dating back over a thousand years, plays host to some of the newest comics, most modern choreographers, some of the coolest DJ's and some of the freshest talent in Britain.
Over the years we've promoted Coldplay, Eddie Izzard, Graham Norton, Harry Hill, Catherine Tate, Jo Brand, The Libertines, Ash, The Killers, The Strokes, Phill Jupitus, Mick Jones, Bill Bailey, Jack Dee, Count Arthur Strong - all before anyone had ever heard of them of course - plus the likes of jazz legend Ronnie Scott and even the late lamented and much loved Brian Johnston the cricket commentator.
Our passion to present new work bring great bands and comics to Colchester burns more brightly than ever. Our business is all about fresh ideas, new acts, new art forms and vibrant new ways of working. We can't stand still. We embrace the new, the quirky the original and yes, the surreal.
Whilst every effort goes into ensuring this gig listing is accurate and up to date, always check with the venue before you travel.