Rudeboy: The Story of Trojan Records

This stylish documentary about the iconic ska, reggae and rock-steady label is a timely and wide-ranging celebration of British Jamaican working-class youth culture.

Dir Nicolas Jack Davies
Prod Sam Bridger, Vivienne Perry
Sales Agent Submarine

‘The seeds for the multicultural society we live in now were formed on the dancefloor back in the day,’ says Don Letts by way of introduction to Nicolas Jack Davies’ documentary about Trojan Records, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. The company was founded by Windrush immigrant Lee Gopthal, against a backdrop of rising racial hatred. Rudeboy charts the label’s evolution from 1960s ska and rock-steady to the chart-topping hits that introduced reggae to a global audience, while also recalling the prejudice that the music’s pioneering artists and producers had to overcome in London. Blending original interviews with evocative archive footage and cinematic reconstructions, the film is a timely celebration of British Jamaican working-class youth culture, style and ingenuity.

Manish Agarwal