“A new 'gas station' at garden gate possessed of infernal machine called 'sound system'. It relays calypso from 9 p.m. To 3 a.m. Special favourite being a syncopated version of 'Three Blind Mice'.”The references to 'Three Blind Mice' are interesting, given that a calypso version of the nursery rhyme featured in the soundtrack of Dr No, released in 1962. The song, actually titled 'Kingston Calypso', was composed by Monty Norman and performed by the Jamaican band, Byron Lee and the Dragonaires. In the film, the music accompanies the three blind beggars – in fact assassins sent by Dr No – on their way to kill Strangways. Was this the song that disturbed Ann Fleming so much?
It's possible. The soundtrack album was a chart hit, and Byron Lee and the Dragonaires, thanks in part to the success of Dr No, were billed as 'Jamaica's no. 1 band', and doubtless their music was heard across the island.
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A more likely candidate is 'Three Blind Mice' by Prince Buster (Cecil Bustamente Campbell), who was a pioneer of ska music in Jamaica in the early 1960s. His version of 'Three Blind Mice', which appeared on the B-side of the single 'Spider and Fly' in 1963, is a ska track and much more in keeping with the syncopated sound heard by Ann Fleming.
Ska and Dr No seem a world apart, but Ann Fleming's letters reveal something of a connection. Monty Norman's 'Kingston Calypso', inspired by the film's more or less faithful portrayal of the three blind beggars in Ian Fleming's novel, was among the first of a number of Jamaican versions of 'Three Blind Mice', and helped to give the nursery rhyme a particular place in Jamaican culture.
Amory, M, 1985 The letters of Ann Fleming, Collins Harvill