[ skah ]
/ skɑ /


a modern style of vocalized Jamaican popular music, which emerged in the 1950s as a blend of African-Jamaican folk music, calypso, and American rhythm and blues, notable for its shuffling, scratchlike tempo and jazzlike horn riffs on the offbeat.

Nearby words

  1. sjælland,
  2. sjögren's syndrome,
  3. sk,
  4. sk.,
  5. sk8,
  6. skag,
  7. skagen,
  8. skagerrak,
  9. skagway,
  10. skaif

Origin of ska

First recorded in 1960–65; of obscure origin Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ska

  • Ska man' dros, or Scamander—a river of the Troad or plains of Troy.

  • What I want is to drive every pony across the Wakon and up the Ska valley, where we'll find support.

    Under Fire|Charles King

British Dictionary definitions for ska


/ (skɑː) /


a type of West Indian pop music of the 1960s, accented on the second and fourth beats of a four-beat bar

Word Origin for ska

C20: origin unknown

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for ska



1964, Jamaican, of unknown origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper