Annie Ruddock (1963- ), born Anne-Marie Teresa Antoinette Ruddock, was the lead singer of the 1980s British ska band Amazulu. They sang such hits in Britain as “Too Good to be Forgotten” (1986), “Excitable” (1985), “Don’t You Just Know It” (1985) and “Montego Bay” (1986).
In 1987 the band suddenly broke up. Ruddock and two others tried to carry on as Amazulu II. They got two songs in the top 100, but then nothing. Band mate and bass guitarist Clare Kenny went on to play for Shakespear’s Sister and Sinead O’Connor in the 1990s and is now a songwriter.
Ruddock herself appeared in the 1987 film “Straight to Hell” as Molly. She gets shot dead in that film. It is the last we ever see of her. She dropped out of sight.
Annie, where did you go!? I miss you!
I loved her: her voice, the way she looked, her stage presence, her long black dreadlocks. I loved her eyes and her thighs. Her smile and those cheekbones. Even her songs. Everything. Even if she was kind of thin.
I wonder where she came from. I know she grew up in London, but how did she wind up in a ska band in the middle 1980s? Ska was already old-fashioned music in Jamaica in those days – something your parents listened to – but somehow it lived on in Britain and she became a part of it.
I would guess she had a Jamaican father and a white British mother, but she has those three French names. That makes me think she is Catholic, that her family came from somewhere that was once under French rule but then fell under British rule. Like maybe Dominica in the Caribbean. And it is not just the names: she even looks Creole, like Lisa Bonet.
Amazulu was an almost-all-girl ska band in London that had been performing since at least 1982. Falcon Stuart, the manager of Adam & the Ants, discovered them in 1983 and got their song “Cairo” on the radio. They also appeared as a band on television shows in 1984 and 1985: “Top of the Pops”, “The Wide Awake Club” and “The Young Ones”. That helped to get them known. In 1986 they started to get airplay in America, but then a year later in 1987 the band broke up.
Amazulu is a Zulu word that means “the people from heaven”.
Word on the Internet has it that as of 2006 she was doing well, living in London, studying and working in computer software, having left the music industry long ago.
Annie, if you are reading this, drop me a line! Abagond at gmail.com. If you want to clear up any mysteries or facts, I would love to know! Or if you have any cool pictures of yourself to send. The ones on the Internet do not do you justice!
May God be with you in all you do!
Postscript: A commenter who says he is her cousin says that her parents both came from Jamaica, her mother being half Chinese. Another who says she is her sister said their father was Jamaican and their mother white.