APRIL 20

In the early ’80s, ska enjoyed its first and only real popular renaissance under the auspices of new wave, when Brit groups like the Specials and the English Beat took the movement aboveground with a savvy brew of pop-wise R&B and surly punk momentum. In more recent years, ska has been given whiplash by the sporadically brilliant Fishbone and soiled by the dimwitted frat dudes in the Mighty Mighty Bosstones. By comparison, the Skatalites can seem like stodgy traditionalists; their slow-skanking instrumentals are short on hyperbeats and style, focusing instead on the intricate mingling of jazzy solo breaks and serpentine rhythms that defined ska when they invented the form back in the early ’60s. But the Skatalites, their original lineup intact save for late trombonist Don Drummond, still know how to show their fangs. On their 30th-anniversary recording, Hi-Bop Ska!, the band reclaimed its crown as ska’s most gifted pro-genitors by inviting the likes of saxophonist David Murray and toaster Prince Buster into the studio for a flat-out jam, reinventing ska as a loose-limbed arena for chop-flexing and stylistic promiscuity. In concerts past, the Skatalites have outplayed tourmates half their age, so don’t think these senior citizens can’t still work a dance floor. At 7:30 p.m. at the Barns of Wolf Trap, 1624 Trap Rd., Vienna. $15. (703) 938-2404. (Brett Anderson)