My tune of the week is one of my tunes of all time! I came across this beauty on one of my record shopping treks. It did not have an artist or title credit, but it was on the Gemini label. I thought it was the label associated with the legendary dancehall sound of the eighties, even though it looked earlier than a dancehall tune, but I took a chance on buying it. And it turned out it was not a dancehall tune at all, but a glorious 70s sweet roots tune. (more…)
(Bongo Man 7)
During my heavy collecting days, I always got a great deal of pleasure from picking up the lesser-known Studio One tunes. It seems strange to me that with all these Studio One/Coxsone compilations coming out, there are a number of superb mid-70s roots numbers that appear to be under the radar, so to speak. (more…)
You may or not have heard of Reddman UK. That’s Reddman with two d’s and an added UK on the end, not to be confused with the other one who hangs about with Method Man. And you may or may not have heard Popcaan’s ‘Everything Nice’.
The former I actually know little about. What I do know is that he is a North Londoner and spends a lot of time with Gappy Ranks whose label, Hot Coffee Music, he is also signed to. I have heard bits and pieces from Reddman over the years and I have to say I have liked it all. The guy has a pretty unique voice, an almost crossover, deep falsetto style that wouldn’t be out of place on a hip-hop hook. (more…)
Instantly upbeat and conscious, this rather rare digital reggae 12″ (which Deadly Dragon Sound System recently sold out of at US$150) is a scorching condemnation of Jamaican socioeconomics. Calling on the listener to ‘take a walk’ and ‘watch the big man sit up on top, lookin’ at we the poor people on the flat,’ Kentucky doesn’t romanticize the repetitive realities of Kingston’s yards. (more…)
Addis is the son of the legendary Augustus Pablo, and here he is following in his father’s footsteps and continuing the ‘Pablo’ legacy on a heavy roots riddim, built by producer Frenchie for his Maximum Sounds imprint. (more…)
This fresh release comes on the fourth installment of the much desired Dubbers compilations, and 10-year anniversary of the Jahtari label. (more…)
Studio One 7″
‘See Them A Come’ was released on Studio One 7″ in 1967, but also featured on the Soul Jazz Records ‘Studio One Rude Boy’ compilation.
Noel Simms was born in 1935 in Kingston and attended the Apha Boys School. His career as a vocalist began singing as a duo with his school friend Bunny Robinson. They began making RnB acetates for sound systems in the 1950′s, after winning numerous talent shows and developing a huge following. From there they recorded for the likes of Coxsone Dodd and Prince Buster. (more…)
The minute I heard this tune, it made my hair stand on end! Its sound took me back to a time where Rub-a-Dub and Lovers Rock ruled supreme. What appealed to me was its feel, which is a fusion of these two styles of reggae. We already know Maxi is well versed in making songs that encompass these elements. (more…)
Taking Randy Newman’s original, The Tamlins – arguably most famous as the backing vocalists for 70s touring artists including Jimmy Cliff, John Holt, and Peter Tosh – turn the sparse melodic track “Baltimore” into something far more funky and groove-driven. Opening with a guitar that approaches the skank later found in Ini Kamoze’s “World A Reggae,” it is the foreboding keys and the soulful vocals that combine to elevate this far beyond an average late 70s reggae tune. (more…)
The best place to start, as a wise man probably said, is at the start! So this time my Track of the Week will be for the first reggae 7″ I brought.
I grew up on the outskirts of London and had become interested in the thriving sound system explosion of the 90s. Culture Promotions put on regular Jah Shaka all-nighters at The Rocket on Holloway Road, as well as their regular Thursday night Dub Club. Every week saw a different sound. And as you reached the top of the stairs at The Dome (Tuffnell Park), there was a record stall. I had quite a few LPs by that time but had not yet started on the 7′s. (more…)