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What is “ska punk” music?

I like to think of ska punk as a mixture of punk rock and big band, but that is not the most accurate explanation. Wikipedia is much more thorough in its description:

Ska punk is a fusion music genre that combines ska and punk rock. It achieved its highest level of commercial success in the United States in the late 1990s. Ska-core (sometimes spelled skacore) is a subgenre of ska punk, blending ska with hardcore punk.

The characteristics of ska punk vary, due to the fusion of contrasting genres. The more punk-influenced style often features faster tempos, guitar distortion, onbeat punk rock-style interludes (usually the chorus), and punk-style vocals. The more ska-influenced style of ska punk features a more developed instrumentation and a cleaner vocal and musical sound. The common instrumentation includes electric guitar, bass guitar, drums, brass instruments (such as trombones or trumpets), saxophones, and sometimes an organ.

Ska was particularly popular when I worked at college radio stations in the mid-1990s. The Mighty Mighty Bosstones had enormous commerical success, appeared in the Alicia Silverstone movie Clueless, and recorded a version of “Detroit Rock City” for a KISS tribute album. Goldfinger was another band that found some mainstream success with their single, “Here In Your Bedroom.” No Doubt and Sublime are also considered a part of the ska movement by many.

The other big ska band of the mid-1990s was Reel Big Fish. Each of their studio albums spent time on the Billboard Top 200 charts, and the single “Sell Out” reached #10 on the modern rock chart in 1996.

Reel Big Fish will be playing at Bogart’s in Cincinnati, Ohio, on Saturday night, July 7. I know times are hard, and money is tight, and to help you out with that we are giving away ten pair of tickets. All you have to do is send an e-mail to with your name by Thursday morning at 6:00 a.m., and you’ll be entered in a drawing to get a pair to see the show for free! Who doesn’t love free?

Want a free Orioles bobblehead?

I’m not sure if this contest is still open or not…but if it is, you could score a free Adam Jones bobblehead. Go check it out.

Edit: I had my days mixed up when I posted this, thinking I was posting early Saturday morning. It’s actually open until Saturday, so go check it out now!

Everyone is having contests!

I wouldn’t mind having that Ichiro card, so I’m entering The Diamond King‘s contest. You should enter, too.

Contest Time!

(click to enlarge)

As mentioned, I went through tons of basketball cards tonight. I don’t recognize most of the names. Most are from the “junk wax” era, starting with 1989 NBA Hoops (a great card, really…wish they had lasted longer). There may be a few older than that, maybe not. Can’t really remember. Some are in pretty bad shape. Others have four sharp corners. You can have them. Well, as many as I can fit in an 800-count box. Here’s what you gotta do…

This crossword puzzle.

That’s right. Just answer those questions and ship your answers to jasontcarter at gmail dot com. The first to get all 18 answers correct…which means they have to fit in the puzzle grid…will get the 800 or so basketball cards. There may be some Scottie Pippens in there, or some Robert Parrishes, maybe some Danny Ainges, I can’t really remember. No Jordans, Birds, Magics, or Isaiahs. Sorry.

The only hint you get is that the answer to every single question can be found somewhere on the blog starting with the last post on October 19 (“A very important message from Alice Cooper”). Except for one. One question (#8 across) is just a random question I pulled out of nowhere that you will just have to figure out using your knowledge of sports history and two letters shared with other answers. Everything else is referenced somewhere on this blog between “As promised…” and “A very important message from Alice Cooper.” It may be my words or opinions, or it may be facts printed on a card, or a quote from a card, but it’s all there somewhere. Sometimes the answer is a person’s last name only, sometimes full name. You have to figure it out by what fits in the puzzle.

OK, that’s enough rambling…get to solving!

Print it! Solve it! Win it!

I know the answer

That’s all we had to start with. Just a little tiny piece of a puzzle. But a few questions later, we know this:

It is from the 1987 Donruss “The Rookies” set.

I figured out the answer to Andy’s Shopped Cards #19 this morning, but decided to give it some time to let others play along.


I may post my guess before I leave for work tonight, or I may wait until morning. So don’t dilly dally. Go do it.

I’m a weiner!

The White Sox Cards blog is giving away stuff! I love contests, and once I get my cards all organized (I just found 4 more boxes last night!) I might have a few too, but that will be a while down the line. For now, enjoy the 2008 Heritage contest over there. I picked up the 1959 Ossie/Ozzie Virgil buyback card, making me ineligible for future Heritage contests, so I have no qualms about telling you of the contest. 🙂

Free stuff is cool

I love entering contests on the internet, though I don’t recall ever winning anything. But it’s still fun to enter contests. I really want to win a drumset, but I’ll settle for a stack of baseball cards.

88 Topps Cards is giving away a bunch of baseball cards. Right now, the contest is for cards #51-100, which includes Dale Murphy, Roger Clemens, and the amazing Jack Clark, who many thought was robbed of the 1987 NL MVP award. Actually, they were just bitter because Andre Dawson clearly had a better year.

Here is a website that lists a bunch of music-related contests. Most of them are just “enter here,” although occasionally you have to answer some stupid questions about who your favorite band is. I wonder what some of these people think when I answer “Poison” as my favorite band? Is it my fault that they wrote one of the greatest party songs ever? Heck, they’ve written several of the greatest party songs ever…”Nothin’ But A Good Time,” “Unskinny Bop,” “I Want Action,” and “Look What the Cat Dragged In.”

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