First Performance In 27 Years

Legendary ska-punk group The Specials re-united at the weekend for an extraordinary performance at the rain-sodden Bestival event.

The band's multi-racial line up promoted harmony at a time when the Far Right were on the rise in Thatcherite Britain. Their 2-Tone label launched hit after hit into the charts, and their distinctive black and white look caught on across the nation.

The band dissolved in acrimonious circumstances as lead singer Terry Hall led an exodus to form the Fun Boy Three. Creative lynchpin Jerry Dammers chose to continue as The Special AKA, eventually releasing the historic single "Free Nelson Mandela".

For the current re-union only six of the original members of the band will be involved - Jerry Dammers has withdrawn without explanation. Billed as Terry Hall And Friends the six original members took to the stage and played a rapturously received greatest hits set.

Beginning with "A Message To You, Rudy" the band played versions of "Too Much Too Young" and a cover of the Toots And The Maytals' song "Monkey Man".

A reunion has long been rumoured, with many members involved in Specials related projects. Amid the mud and rain of a storm lashed Bestival site, however, something magical took place.

Read our Bestival reports now!

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