Q1.Are you enjoying your stay in Japan this time?
(P).Yes, very much

Q2.How did you come up with human percussion?
(P).As a kid in Jamaica when we started singing we didnft have money to buy instruments so we improvised. We used tin pans and sticks to try and get sounds and a lot of us used our mouths, so its coming from childhood. In the school we played with this idea and it was like ############. This was earlier on when we couldnft buy drums and bass so we had to use tins pans, knock the pans, knock sticks, knock bottles, knock anything together and use our mouths. When we came home from school in the evenings we would go under the stop light on Drummond street and all of us would do our own little music thing. Then we grew up and understood more, but itfs coming from childhood.

Q3.Can you tell us some of the tunes they used to play often on the sound system?
(P).Tunes like gTwo Barrel a Secondh, gToothacheh, gJumping With The Dukeh, gHumpty Dumpyh, gShake a Legh, gThey Got To Come My Wayh, gTime Longer Than Ropeh, gBlackhead ChineyManh. Those were the favorites; I did not have Carolina yet.

Q4.Why did you pack up your Sound System?
(P).What happened was that I was gkillingh a sound when I did, I left the champion. It was the decision of Mr. Emil Sharlet. Mr. Emil Sharlet had owned Bluebeat Records in London. He came to Jamaica to see me and was interested in me as a writer and singer. He started coming to the dances with me at nights and saw me in some gfightsh. His name for it was gEmpty Gloryh and he thought that I should give up the sound system and concentrate more on writing and staying in the studio and he would take care of the records in London, promoting and selling them.When he said it to me I had to think because I was the King of Sounds, why stop? However, I am the type of person who listens to elderly persons because they have more experience than me. I reluctantly did it because he insisted and I think that was the best thing I had ever done because maybe I would have been gkilledh or gkilledh someone based on how things were going on at the time and the songs you got from me you wouldnft have. So Mr. Sharlet was very important in the propagation of Prince Busterfs music and to this day I gcrownh him one of my most serious teachers because this was the man who widened my mind from being a village concept to being an international, universal concept. He is dead and I thank him very much for it, I thank him for everything.

Q5.What inspired you to write tunes like gSeven Wonders of The Worldh and gPrince of Peaceh which apparently have an eastern influence.
(P).It was the situation. What happened at that period was that I am a thinker and although my body was in Jamaica my mind was roaming the eastern part of the world. I wrote songs I heard in my head and I called that journey a gmental journeyh. I called it gOne Step Beyondh because one has to get into that mood and once you get into that mood then everything becomes plain, all the pieces and parts just come fitting in.So my mind was really thinking of the east, it may have also been biblical because I grew up as a Christian before I became a Muslim so maybe the bible helped some part of that too.

Q6.Did you record your tunes with one take or very quickly?
(P).It was both ways, I had a lot of one takes, why? Drumbaigo and my little band played at the Baby Grand in Crossroads and when they finished playing at nights, three o clock in the mornings we would rehearse with them when everyone had left the club. So we did the rehearsals there and when we arrived at the studio everyone was ready so we did a lot of one takes.
There were times when we did take after take because I insisted on getting it right and sometimes the musicians got frustrated but I still insisted. So they had to go over and over until it was compatible with what was in my head.

Q7.You often spoke about Drumbaigo, Arkland Parker, but not many Japanese know about him can you tell us more about him.
(P).Drumbaigo was a big man, he could have been my father but like a lot of people in Jamaica Ifm respectful to older people so they respect me. He used to work on the ships sometimes playing his music. He played music for dinner people and he was a very nice man and without him, I donft think I would have been successful making Ska music so a lot of credit goes to Arkland Parkes, Drumbaigo. He was a good man, not a bully, nice and calm. He usually had a flute which he walked with in his waist.

Q8.What do you think about new Jamaican artists not making instrumental music anymore?
(P).They mostly stick to vocals but I think they should start using horns, because, to me the music is incomplete without a blend of horns. But they werenft around in those days when the horns were blasting. So I think we have to play some horns now and attract them to horn music. You can make a dub without horns but I dint think that you should make a complete record without horns, itfs incomplete.

Q9.About instrumental music being played at dances, did people play songs like gSeven Wonders of the Worldh and what was it like?
(P).When that went on the dancehall shouted and begged you to play. When I started making records it wasnft for commercial purposes. I was the King of Sounds and I was making records to keep the sounds on top. So it was the competition of the sound system that gave me the drive. I came up with a lot of ideas which a lot of my friends copied but I believe that unlike attracts and like repels so I always tried to find different sound and different approaches to people, like I did with Carolina. I brought the drums into music, even though society rejected them. I used them in the studio even though I was ruling with Ska but in my head the monotony was the same thing. Ifm just creative.

Q10.Which singer influenced you the most?
(P).Billy Ekstine, he was everything, one of his songs I like very much is Bewildered glost in a dream of you, where is that love I knew, why did we parth, Ekstine. I like him singing caravan. I like all of Billy Ekstine. I always have Billy Ekstinefs record and music. I have all his songs.
Another person that influenced me was Jesse Belvin. I listened to other people but I think the person who influenced me the most was Billy Ekstine.
Question: Is Billy Ekstine a Jamaican singer Answer: No Billy Ekstine is an American.

Q11.What did you think about the Determinations who are about the same age as your children?
(P).They were a pleasant surprise, I enjoyed them. Some of the old band members that played with me have gotten older now and to get them to find back the feel again is difficult and when I come and play with the determinations it was like I was in the studio making records.When I heard certain sounds they played I said they are going to be a band for the world to recon with if they continue on the same path because Ska music is going to rule the world, letfs face it. First of all, I sung songs earlier that told you it canft die, it has proven itself, it canft die. The Japanese people accepting it and appreciating it at the shows showed me again that the energy of Ska is contagious. I was taking off the band memberfs hats on the stage to have a good look at them when they were playing when I felt a certain vibe from them. It was unbelievable that these guys were playing so good.

Q12.50 years ago did you imagine the Ska movement at it is today with bands like the Determinations and young Japanese people going mad over your music?
(P).When I look at this thing some people think Ifm a prophet because at the beginning I wrote a song gHe who has tongue will live to tell, he who has ears will live to hear, he who has eyes will live to see, the blessing of faith is now pouring down on meh. Thatfs how I feel right now, it was as if I knew of these people in my subconscious mind who would be here to represent Ska, young, energetic, they love it, they are tenacious to it. I think they are a good band.

Q13.What is your impression of Japan and the Japanese people?
(P).I love the city. Actions speak louder than words and to show my appreciation to Japan we are about to make a new record gJapanese Womanh.

Q14.What was your method and discipline as a producer?
(P).I rehearsed, got the ideas coming, took them to the musicians, showed them the paths, got it right and then we went to the studio and executed it.
Question:As a singer? Answer:I was the writer, the producer and the singer so I wore all the hats.

Q15.There is a man called Duke Vin who made all of this happened, some of us know about him can you tell us more?
(P).He is an older man to me but he is my friend. I grew up with him on Charles Street. Tom the Great Sebastian was Jamaicafs first dancehall sound system and Vinny was its disk jockey. But Vinny was like a model, he was tall and would wear suits, his shoes were like mirrors, they were always shine so he was known as Vinny Shiny Shoes.He would stand at the Jubliee Gardens collecting money then he would go up a staircase unto a platform where the amps were and when you came through the gate Vinny would stand like this and everyone who passed coming in the dance would look at his shoes, say hello and go in. He is a nice character, his son died and he came to England after that and started his sound business and he is still my friend. I look for him all the time and we are still together. He is also my wifefs friend.

Q16.Can you send a message to all the Ska fans and the people who play Ska all over the world, something they should never forget?
(P).To all the fans and all the musicians who are interested in playing Ska. I would tell them gyoufre on the right trackh, keep at it, gthe harvest will soon comeh, keep at it because Ska is going to rule the world with music.

Q17.You have many labels, most people have one or two, can you tell us about this?
(P).As an artist each of my labels portrays different chapters of my life at the time. The designs, etc. were by me, it was like doing a song. A lot of people seem to love the label Wild Bells. That was a very active time in my life. There is another one Soulvile Centre, which recorded the identity of Luke Lane and Charles Street.Thatfs where Tom the Great Sebastian played his sound system at his hardware shop and a lot of musicians lived in those lanes. People like, Joe Bundy, a great trumpeter. So to hold the identity I made that label and put the signs Luke Lane and Charles Street, Soulvile Centre. When you do your research it will lead to what was really happening then. So if you go by that label you will understand about Luke Lane, Charles Street and Orange Street. Luke Lane and Charles Street were simply the backdoor to Orange street They are next to each other so you can move from one home to the other very easily.

Q18.Talk about fighting spieit and the meaning of ONE STEP BEYOND.
(P).Since Ifm a little older I can tell you, donft make any disappointments or anything like that stop you. I think you should just keep marching because man was really made to toil and struggle. The purpose of man on earth is to toil and struggle so we should get used to it. To do nothing is not the purpose, it is to toil and struggle and when it reaches this point, push, push. Thatfs why I love boxing.

Q19.What keeps you going for 50 years despite the many things that have happened?
(P).The thing is not to let these things get on top of you. You are the man, you have the energy, and you have the spirit to move on. To the last day keep on pushing.

NUFF RESPECT TO KING OF SKA PRINCE BUSTER
INTERVIEWFMASAYA HAYASHI/DRUWEED (ROCK-A-SHACKA/DRUM AND BASS)
15/MAR/03 at WEST INN HOTEL