"One Step Beyond"
Familiar version: Madness (1979)
Original version: Prince Buster (1967)
Bonus: Madness, "The Prince" (1979)
I suspect that this song is actually pretty obscure to a lot of people, but "One Step Beyond" was really important to me back in the day. The Madness version was actually the first 2 Tone ska revival song I ever heard, and as much as I've loved music all my life, I don't think I've ever loved any music the way I loved ska when I was around 18 to 20. It's the only time in my life I actually thought about becoming a scenester. If the scene had had a different haircut, I probably would have. (Don't judge me, I was only 18.) Kind of ironic considering what I look like today.
But I never knew until recently that "One Step Beyond" was actually a cover of an old B-side by legendary ska pioneer Prince Buster. I rather like that it is, actually, since I first learned about Prince Buster from Madness's song about him, "The Prince" (see below). So here's the Madness version, Prince Buster's original, and a bonus.
Bonus: Madness's tribute to Prince Buster, "The Prince." This was their first single.
Lots of times, the most familiar version of a song isn't the original version. I write about some of these "covers that you might not have known are covers" on occasional Saturdays.
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