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Reggae Capital USA

Skanking Lizard

Skanking Lizard

Skanking Lizard originated in Chicago in 1978. The band was started by a culmination of friends who had the common bond of friendship and a love for reggae music. Originally: the band consisted of Alan (Blood) Lery: on vocals: Ken Sutchar (Keyboards): Tom Sarelas (Drums): Dennis Sarelas (Percussion): Dan Gordon (Bass): Rick Miller (Rhythm Guitar): and Jerry Smolinsky (Lead Guitar). This line up of Jewish Northside musicians became Chicago’s original performing reggae band. During this time: the Lizard concentrated on developing their own sound: which incorporated American roots with reggae rhythms. After nearly two years of successful concert dates: the band discontinued performing due to conflicting professional goals. In the fall of 1981: the band reformed with original members: Lery: Sutchar: Sarelas: and original drummer: Tom Sarelas. Lizard also added George Kolmar on guitar and Jon Scaccia on bass: who after many years on the rock circuit decided reggae music was their future. In the 1980’s they became one of Chicago’s favorite Festival bands. Skanking Lizard toured with the likes of Toots and the Maytals: Mighty Diamonds: Steel Pulse: Neville Brothers: and the B-52’s. They released Jesse James/Mushroom in 1983: which made Jamaica’s Top 40 List. Over the years they collected 8 Martin’s International Reggae Awards. In 1984 lead singer Alan “””Blood”””” Lery releases “”””Kingston Meets Chicago”””” which was recorded at Channel One in Kingston: Jamaica. The record featured Reggae artist Santa Davis on Drums: Ranchie McLean on Bass: and Skully on Percussion. The producer of the record was Jimmy Becker: famed Reggae studio harmonica player: who also was a member of Skanking Lizard in the early 1980’s. Skanking Lizard performed well into the 1990’s. Their music has been preserved and is still enjoyed by many today.