Archive for January, 2014

Burning Spear – Social Living (1978)

Posted in Burning Spear, Dub, Rastafarians, Robbie Shakespeare, Sly Dunbar with tags , , , , on January 30, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

“Burning Spear’s seventh album was originally released in the U.K. by Island in 1978 and has always been difficult to find in the U.S. Blood and Fire’s reissue makes it possible for average American reggae fans to hear what they’ve been missing, and it turns out that’s quite a lot. Social Living picks up where the third Burning Spear LP, Marcus Garvey, left off — more slow, dark songs about slavery, repatriation, and, of course, Garvey himself (four of the nine songs have his name in their titles). There are still no real tunes to speak of, just immensely dense grooves that thud and rumble along slowly and relentlessly to the accompaniment of distant horns and rattling nyahbinghi percussion. If this 2003 remaster edges out the original Island release in any way, it’s in the mix: Island toned down Social Living (aka Marcus’ Children) a bit to appeal to British audiences, but the Blood and Fire version absolutely throbs with bass and echoes like drums heard across vast distances. In this context, when Winston Rodney sings that ‘Jah no dead’ it’s impossible not to believe him; when he instructs you in the specifics of ‘Social Living,’ you find yourself submitting to his instruction. It’s that kind of album.”

Soundcloud: Social Living (Video)

YouTube: Social Living, Mr Garvey, Marcus Children Suffer, Civilized Reggae, Come, Institution

YouTube: “Institution” Live 1981, Rockpalast

Lloyd Parks

Posted in Coxsone Dodd, Lloyd Parks, Ska, Studio One with tags , , , on January 30, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

Wikipedia – “Parks’ interest in music was fuelled by his uncle Dourie Bryan, who played in a calypso band, and Parks became the band’s singer. In the late 1960s, he performed with the Invincibles band (whose members also included Ansell Collins, Sly Dunbar and Ranchie McLean) before teaming up with Wentworth Vernal in The Termites. In 1967, they recorded their first single, ‘Have Mercy Mr. Percy’, and then an album Do the Rocksteady for Coxsone Dodd’s Studio One label. After recording ‘Rub Up Push Up’ for the Dampa label, Parks and Vernal split up. Parks then briefly joined The Techniques as a replacement for Pat Kelly, recording tracks such as ‘Say You Love Me’, before embarking on a solo career and later starting his own label, Parks. His second single was the classic ‘Slaving’, a moving song about the struggles of a working man. …”

“b. 26 May 1948, Walton Gardens, Jamaica, West Indies. A renowned singer and bass player, after completing his studies in music, Parks toured the north coast of Jamaica, performing on stage with his uncle. In the late 60s, Parks performed with the Invincibles band, whose personnel at that time also included Ansell Collins (organ), Sly Dunbar (drums) and Bertram ‘Ranchie’ Mclean (guitar). He then teamed up with Wentworth Vernon as half of the vocal duo the Termites, who recorded one album for Coxsone Dodd’s Studio One and enjoyed a number of hits produced by Dodd, including ‘Do It Right Now’, ‘Have Mercy Mr Percy’, ‘My Last Love’ and the legendary ‘Rub Up Push Up’. After three years, the duo split and Parks was drafted into the Techniques to replace Pat Kelly, joining Dave Barker and producer Winston Riley. Although he was only in the line-up for a brief period, he was reputed to have sung on the classic ‘You Don’t Care’, which he later recorded as a soloist in a medley of his hits. His solo recording ‘Stars’ was a minor hit but it was his version of ‘Slaving’ that won him international acclaim. The song was used by I. Roy for his classic ‘Black Man Time’ and by Big Youth for ‘Honesty’. He recorded ‘Say You Love Me’ for Riley in 1969, and played bass on Dave And Ansell Collins’ international hits ‘Double Barrel’ (1970) and ‘Monkey Spanner’ (1970). By 1970 he was recording for producers Sonia Pottinger (‘We Will Make Love’) and Harry J. (‘A Little Better’). …”


YouTube: We’ll Get Over It (Discomix), Mafia Remastered, Into the Night, LLoyd Parks and U Brown Reach Out And Dub It Deh, Slaving Remastered, A little better, Stop the War Now

Carey Johnson – Correction Train (1972)

Posted in Carey Johnson, Coxsone Dodd, DJ, Riddims, Studio One with tags , , , , on January 29, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

“Carey Johnson kicked off his recording career, like so many others, at Studio One, cutting a number of DJ discs for Coxsone Dodd at the tail-end of the Sixties. After making the studio rounds, Johnson returned to his starting point in 1972, and promptly rode the ‘Correction Train’ right into the sound systems. The title is a play on the original riddim’s, The Selected Few’s ‘Selection Train’, own, with The Soul Defenders laying down the smoldering reggae backing. Overhead, Johnson comes on strong, hurrying people into the carriages, all the while interjecting nursery rhymes and threats to bleed dry the woman he marries. Winding up the dancing crowds with his excited exhortations, the DJ soups up this song in fine style.”

YouTube: Correction Train

The Gladiators – The train is coming back (1968)

Posted in Ska, The Revolutionaries with tags , on January 29, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

A JBig
YouTube: The train is coming back

Ranking Joe – World in Trouble (2005)

Posted in Big Youth, Black Ark, Channel One, Dancehall, DJ, Michael Rose, Ranking Joe, Twilight Circus, U-Roy with tags , , , , , , , , on January 27, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

“DJ Ranking Joe (who has also recorded under the name Little Joe, not to be confused with Little John) is a legend among the cognoscenti of old-school dancehall reggae, although his commercial career and worldwide reputation have always been overshadowed by those of his contemporaries Big Youth and, especially, the great U-Roy, who served as something of a mentor to Ranking Joe during his early career. This excellent new set finds him in the company of session greats from the early days, including trumpeter Bobby Ellis, saxophonist Dean Fraser, and guitarist Chinna Smith; since Ryan Moore (of Twilight Circus Dub Sound System fame) is behind the boards, the rhythms are thick, dark, and heavy — close your eyes and you could be back in the Channel One studio or even the Black Ark during the roots heyday of the late ’70s. And Ranking Joe himself is in top form; he’s effortlessly articulate chatting on tracks like ‘Don’t Follow Babylon’ (a fine combination track featuring singer Michael Rose) and ‘Seek Ye First,’ neither of them breaking any new ground either lyrically or musically, but both demonstrating again that Ranking Joe deserves to be rated with the very best exponents of this venerable style of reggae chatting. Highly recommended.”

Twilight Circus Dub Sound System
“Twilight Circus is the dub and reggae project of multi-instrumentalist Ryan Moore, former bassist and drummer of the Legendary Pink Dots. Twilight Circus is becoming increasingly popular and well known for Moore’s work with artists such as Big Youth, Michael Rose of Black Uhuru and Ranking Joe. He originally started off producing dub albums, before recording vocalists for inclusion on his critically acclaimed Foundation Rockers album. In the classic tradition of reggae, Moore releases 10″ vinyl record singles, often in limited edition. …”

YouTube: World In Trouble [Full Album]
00:0 – 03:46 Seek Ye First 03:48 – 08:09 Poor Man Struggle 08:12 – 12:39 Control Your Temper 12:40 – 16:26 World In Trouble 16:26 – 20:13 Wake The Nation 20:15 – 24:30 Don’t Follow Babylon 24:33 – 28:10 Nowhere To Hide 28:10 – 32:38 Don’t Try To Use Me 32:41 – 36:40 Don’t Try To Use Me Dub 36:42 – 40:31 World In Trouble (Vibronics Skaboom Remix) 40:42 – 45:34Don’t Follow Babylon

Augustus Pablo – Valley of Jehosaphat (1999)

Posted in Augustus Pablo, Dub with tags , on January 27, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

“This may be tantamount to sacrilege in roots reggae circles, but really, don’t Augustus Pablo’s albums all pretty much sound alike? There’s no denying his historical importance as a musician and producer for bringing in the melodica and popularizing, if not introducing, dub techniques into the music. Certainly King Tubby Meets Rockers Uptown and probably East of the River Nile belong in any serious reggae collection for their crucial musical innovations in mid- and late-’70s Jamaican music. But the fact is, you know what you’re going to get on any Pablo disc — melodica instrumentals with a basic backing band, some dub touches — and there’s only so much mileage you can get out of that combination. There are some different twists on Valley of Jehosaphat, like the dischords Pablo throws into his soloing on ‘Lymphatic Time’ or the blend of British and Jamaican veterans backing him. So is the vibes/celeste sound beneath the melodica and the forceful rhythm of ‘Kushites’ and ‘Kushites Dub,’ which are pretty hard to tell apart — you know, what exactly is the difference between a regular Pablo track and its dub? — except the vibes/celesta sound rings through a bit more clearly on the latter. Now, ‘Chalawa’ combines a jaunty, dubbed-out rhythm with mournful melody and a few uncharacteristic swooshes. It sounds like a programmed backing track, but it’s a very good, interesting song that transcends the usual Pablo-ness. But mostly you note which tracks have a stronger nyabinghi feel (‘Sky Gazer,’ ‘Ethiopian Binghi Drums’), bass (the title track), or bass keyboard (‘Internal Struggle’) foundation, or are unusually skanking (‘Omega Africa’) or softer and gentler (‘Sleeping Chariots,’ ‘Jah Express’) within the general framework of Pablo-ness. That’s not to denigrate the craft and effort Pablo and his musicians undoubtedly put into the music on his releases, but it’s really just nicely grooving reggae background music when you get down to it. That also means Valley of Jehosaphat, quite probably the last disc of fresh music Pablo recorded, is both nothing special and perfectly representative of the latter phase of the late melodica man’s career.”

YouTube: Valley of Jehosaphat [full album]
00:00 – 1 – Kushites 03:54 – 2 – Kushites Dub 07:55 – 3 – Valley Of Jehosaphat 16:37 – 5 – Sky Gazer 20:52 – 6 – Foggy Mountain 24:34 – 7 – Chalawa 28:25 – 8 – 3rd Generation 32:08 – 9 – Omega Africa 36:07 – 10 – International Struggle 39:47 – 11 – Sea Shell Dub 43:29 – 12 – Burning Drums 47:00 – 13 – Sleeping Chariots 51:41 – 14 – Ethiopian Binghi Drums 55:36 – 15 – Lymphatic Time

Twin Roots – Know Love (1977)

Posted in Lee "Scratch" Perry, The Upsetters with tags , on January 27, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

YouTube: Know Love, Watty Burnett ~ Rainy Night in Portland