The Selecter is led by their iconic frontwoman Pauline Black and co-fronted by original member Arthur ‘Gaps’ Hendrickson. Pauline Black is one of very few women in the 2-Tone scene – the original Rude Girl she is often referred to as the Queen of Ska.
The anarchic passion that fuelled Selecter gigs during the original 2-Tone era is still there, except the pair are more driven than ever. Their confidence is sky-high and they’re also writing the best songs of their career, which is saying something given the enduring popularity of hits like “Three Minute Hero,” “Missing Words,” “Too Much Pressure” and “On My Radio.”
The Selecter most recently toured the US last Summer with Rancid and Dropkick Murphys and Pauline Black toured in Latin America as a special guest with Damon Albarn’s Gorillaz. In October 2017 The Selecter released their studio full-length Daylight – their most urgent, politically engaged and purely uplifting record since the days of Too Much Pressure and Celebrate The Bullet. Not only a crucial figure in the music community, Black is also a published author, gifted actress, and a celebrated style icon – earlier this year VOGUE featured Duro Olowu’s new Pauline Black-inspired fashion line.
Rhoda Dakar’s career began as lead vocalist with all-woman 2-Tone band The Bodysnatchers who toured with The Selecter. The Bodysnatchers first single was double A-side “Let’s Do Rocksteady” with “Ruder Than You”. Rhoda also later sang and collaborated with The Specials.
2-Tone was a crucial multi-racial, multi-cultural explosion borne out of Coventry and the Midlands that remade British pop from 1979 onwards. Although 2-Tone’s commercial appeal was largely limited to Europe, it did influence the North American ska punk scene and has been cited by a variety of artists from No Doubt to Madonna as being influential to their music.
The Selecter continue to release new music, charting new albums in the UK in the last couple of years, proving that 2-Tone is still as relevant and important as it was 40 years ago.