Sunday Matinee: Pick It Up! Ska in the 90’s [Film]


“A “love letter” to third-wave ska, the film delves deep into how the genre of ska evolved from its original Jamaican form, through British “two-tone” in the 80s, into an entirely new global sensation in the 90’s, when it became wildly popular for an all too brief moment in music history; From the early years of bands like No Doubt, Fishbone, The Toasters, Let’s Go Bowling and Skankin’ Pickle, to the massive radio success of The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Reel Big Fish, and Save Ferris.” – Earshot Media




Rarely do I get press release passing through my inbox that makes me stop and think: “Well, this was tailor made for me”. Well Folks, I am here to say with absolute pride that it has most definitely happened! Our dear friend Taylor Morden’s incredible documentary, Pick It Up! – Ska in the 90’s, has FINALLY arrived! And as I said before, I relate to the stories told within this film so damn much that it truly does feel tailor made (or Taylor made, if you will…..I’ll see myself out).

Of course, being a man of a certain age, I was very into what is known as Third Wave Ska. One of my fondest memories of being a teenager during this time period was watching Reel Big Fish absolutely slay an audience at a live show in Spokane, Washington, just over 20 years ago. I’ve seen a lot of live music since that day, but the joy and happiness that Aaron Barrett brought to that theater that night still ranks pretty high on my list of absolutely perfect moments. 14 year old Ron was skanking away like he was never going to die. If only we could have bottled the positivity that this music provided at this time in history, we may have been able to save the polar bears from extinction.



And beyond my own bias opinion about the genre of music being showcased, Pick It Up! Is simply a brilliantly executed documentary. It dives deep into the history, fame, and longevity (yes, it still knocks all over the glove, despite what you may think) of this beloved genre of music. And it has EVERYONE you need to have explain what this time was like within its 100 minutes of footage. With narration by Tim Armstrong from Rancid, and featuring guests from bands like No Doubt, Reel Big Fish, The Aquabats, The Hepcats (who we reviewed mere months ago!), Goldfinger, and just SO many more! You’ll hear about the trials and triumphs of one of the most positive art forms the world as ever known in this incredible documentary.

So Folks, let yourself live a little! The world is going to shit at such an ever so steady pace. So take a moment to chill out, and feel good, if not just for a 100 minutes. We may only have 120 of them left, so let’s enjoy as much of it as we can. Watch Pick It Up! – Ska in the 90’s, and think back to a time when all was seemingly well. Enjoy!


Pick It Up! – Ska in the 90’s is available now on Blu-Ray & DVD, as well as Amazon Prime. For more information about the film, visit


Also stay tuned for these upcoming screenings:

Ska Parade 30th Anniversary Tour (1/18-2/1)

JAN 18 Twilight Cafe and Bar- Portland, OR

JAN 19 924 Gilman- Berkeley, CA

JAN 20 Holy Diver- Sa2cramento, CA

JAN 21 Thee Parkside- San Francisco, CA

JAN 22 Fulton 55- Fresno, CA

JAN 23 The Siren- Morro Bay, CA

JAN 24 Chain Reaction- Anaheim, CA

JAN 25 Pub Rock Live- Scottsdale, AZ

JAN 30 The Bluebird Theater- Denver, CO

FEB 1 Backstage Bar & Billiards- Las Vegas, NV



About rontrembathiii
write. write. write.

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