Rhoda Dakar: Cleaning In Another Woman’s Kitchen
Why Beyoncé Is No Feminist, And How Brian Eno Is Too Full Of Himself
Rhoda Dakar is one of the UK Ska scene’s feistiest characters, making her mark originally with the Bodysnatchers and then with Jerry Dammers in the Special AKA.
Rhoda’s talent, intelligence, and heartfelt socialist ideals made her stand out from the pack. Like Dammers, she wanted 2-Tone to mean more than a good time…cue songs like The Boiler and Free Nelson Mandela that added real politics to the movement’s in-built message of racial tolerance.
Rhoda was a teenage glam rocker caught up in the rush of punk. She was working in a South London unemployment exchange when bassist Nicky Summers saw her skanking to The Selecter and asked her to join her band on the spot.
The Bodysnatchers, 2-Tone’s first all-woman combo, were signed up quickly and burnt out fast, notching up just one Top 30 hit, Let’s Do Rocksteady.
Their split was not amicable and a reunion will never be on the cards, but Rhoda recently released an album of Bodysnatchers songs funded by her fans via Pledge Music.
Here Garry (who was the first to write about the band in Sounds 35 years ago) talks about old times… good times… Rhoda’s future plans and her vision of how to improve Britain’s Labour Party.