Ernest Ranglin, a session guitarist at Sir Coxsone’s Studio One, is generally regarded as the originator of ska guitar.
An accomplished jazzer, Ernest was influenced by Charlie Christian. He performed with ska and reggae stars like Jimmy Cliff and Prince Buster. He also arranged and played on Millie Small’s 1964 version of My Boy Lollipop, the first international ska smash hit.
Here’s a cool YouTube clip of Ernest demonstrating how the ska guitar style developed from American R&B. It also features an interview with Prince Buster.
E is also for… El Reco: El Reco, AKA Rico Rodriguez, is a Jamaican born trombonist who played on The Special’s top ten cover of the Dandy Livinstone song A Message To You, Rudy. Rico is currently a member of Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra.