One of the most prolific session players of Jamaica's pre-ska era, trombonist Rico Rodriguez later emerged as a catalyst behind the UK's 2-Tone movement of the late 1970s, recording both as a solo artist and as a member of the legendary Specials
While attending Kingston's Alpha Cottage School, an institution for wayward boys, he studied trombone under the legendary Don Drummond
. In the years to follow, Rodriguez emerged as one of Jamaica's most highly regarded session musicians, often working under the direction of the renowned producer Duke Reid
. While his forte remained jazz, he adapted brilliantly to any environment, and applied his improvisational skills to productions from notables including Sly & Robbie
. In 1977, Rodriguez also cut a solo LP, Man from Wareika, credited to simply "Rico; " it was followed a year later by Midnight in Ethiopia. In 1979, he appeared on the Specials'
cover of "A Message to You Rudy," and soon joined the band as a full-time member; for the group's 2-Tone label, Rodriguez also helmed his own outfit, Rico and the Rudies, to yield the albums Blow Your Horn and Brixton Cat. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi