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Listening Booth: ABSR The Mixtape V1

DJ Luke, a second-year keyboard student at the Alpha School of Music, puts his spin on Alpha classics and rare gems.

ABSR The Mixtape Volume 1 covers a lot of ground in just 18 minutes. From Jamaican jazz to ska, to reggae and even a little of the deejay trade, DJ Luke (click for Luke's IG) weaves together classic hits and some rare gems featuring Alpha alumni in bold. Listen, stream or download below and click on "Listen" in the menu bar above for the 24/7 ABSR experience.



Bam Bam - Yellowman and Fathead

Alpha past student Yellowman put his signature lyrical spin on this remake of the Sister Nancy smash hit.


Truth And Rights - Johnny Osbourne

One of the most consistent artists out of Jamaica, Johnny Osbourne started as a trumpet player in the Alpha band,


Uptown Top Ranking - Althea & Donna

Featuring Alpha past students Tommy McCook (tenor saxophone) and Vin Gordon (trombone), Uptown Top Ranking became a surprise hit, reaching number one on the UK Singles Chart in February 1978.


Money Maker - David Madden and Cedric Brooks

Two of the most well traveled Alpha alumni, Madden on trumpet (The Wailers, Zap Pow) and Brooks on saxophone (Mystic Revelation of Rastafari, Light of Saba) make a joyful noise for instrumental music on this special combination.

Alpha Is A Messenger - Alpha Dubplate Special recorded by Luciano

This ‘special’ song utilizes the sound system format of recording custom versions of existing tracks to tell the story of Alpha’s social and artist legacy.


Last War - Zap Pow

Formed with Alpha boys David Madden on trumpet and Glen Dacosta on saxophone, Zap Pow had a short but impactful existence thanks to classic riddims like this one and someone named Beres Hammond on the microphone.


I Know She Loves Me - Owen Gray

One of the first artists to be produced by Chris Blackwell, in 1960, Alpha past student Owen Gray has the distinction of saying his "Patricia" single was the first record ever released by Island Records. “I Know She Loves Me” captures Gray signature timeless style.


El Bang Bang - Jackie Mittoo & The Skatalites

Jamaica’s first pop supergroup, The Skatalites were founded by Alpha past boys Don Drummond (trombone), Lester Sterling (alto sax), Tommy McCook (tenor sax) and Johnny Dizzy Moore (trumpet).


Just What It Is - Ernest Ranglin & The Alpharians featuring Edward ‘Tan Tan’ Thornton

Featuring multiple generations of Alpha students, “Just What It Is” is a contemporary recording (2019) that brings together two of Jamaica’s longest serving music ambassadors, Ernest Ranglin and Tan Tan as well Alpha past boys Winston 'Sparrow' Martin (Alpha Bandmaster Emeritus, Byron Lee & The Dragonnaires) on drums and Ervin 'Alla' Lloyd (Chalice Band) on keys.


Don De Lion - Don Drummond

Reputed to be one of the top trombone players in the world, “Don De Lion” establishes in words what the music community knows well - he was the king of the music jungle.





ABOUT ALPHA INSTITUTE/Alpha School of music

Alpha's 130-year tradition of music education has produced jazz innovators, ska pioneers and reggae icons. We are excited to offer a meaningful and innovative music training curriculum to youth today. We need your help to make it possible. Thank you!




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