On July 28th 1967, British-based Jamaican music company, Island Records launched a label to showcase the output of one of the most popular and successful producers of the Ska and Rock Steady eras – Arthur ‘Duke’ Reid. The imprint, called ‘Trojan’ after the title Mr. Reid had acquired during his early days in the music business, surprisingly failed to fulfil its potential and folded after a matter of months. And this may well have been the end of the Trojan story had it not been for the creation of a new Jamaican music company, launched in the summer of ’68, which was in need of a suitably dynamic name.The result of a merger between by Island Records and its distributor B&C, ‘Trojan Records’ promptly launched an ambitious programme of issuing singles on a variety of labels that highlighted music from every producer of note, ranging from British-based music makers such as Robert ‘Dandy’ Thompson, to such esteemed Jamaican operators as Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, Edward ‘Bunny’ Lee and, of course, Duke Reid himself.Trojan’s rapid growth during its first year was due in no small part to the development of a working class youth movement that embraced Jamaican music as part and parcel of its culture: Skinheads. The purchasing power of this fast developing demographic resulted in an explosion in sales and in the summer of ‘69 the company enjoyed its first mainstream hit with ‘Red Red Wine’ by a little known British-based singer Tony Tribe. Its success was soon eclipsed when the Upsetters, the Pioneers, Jimmy Cliff and Harry J’s All Stars all made their way onto the higher reaches of the mainstream listings. The Trojan bandwagon rolled on remorselessly into the new decade, with the likes of Desmond Dekker, the Maytals and Bob & Marcia all flying high on the British Pop charts.Trojan Records Clothing aims to stay true to the heritage of that British youth movement, with it’s collection of 60’s inspired styles. The extensive clothing range, comprising check and paisley shirts, fine gauge knitwear, polo’s, t-shirts, cycling tops, Harrington’s, parka’s and jeans, all carry the iconic Trojan ‘helmet’ logo. Whether you’re a skinhead, suedehead, rudeboy, scooter boy or mod, these authentic pieces are for you.
Contact [email protected] for any queries about stocking Trojan or Ska and Soul.