Event Pick: The English Beat and 808 at the National 

Oct. 20

click to enlarge The English Beat

Jackie Butler

The English Beat

The English Beat should have been contenders. A chart-topper overseas, the English group was denied entry into the American mainstream in the late ’70s and early ’80s by FM radio programmers who wanted to make sure the latest corporate-approved banality was heard at least three times an hour. Despite that, the ska-pop revivalists’ debut album, “I Just Can’t Stop It,” left an indelible dance floor mark on everybody that heard it. It was and remains one of most underappreciated British bands of its era. On Thursday, Oct. 20, the English Beat brings its enduring multicultural blend of Desmond Dekker, Motown and the Clash to the National. It’s a night of nostalgia for the middle-aged set, but one that transcends sentimentality with a still-timely, modern resonance. Opening will be Richmond English Beat disciples 808. Doors open at 7 p.m. $19.50-$23. thenationalva.com.

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