Archive for the Riddims Category

I Roy – Trust No Shadow After Dark (1979)

Posted in Bunny Lee, Channel One, I-Roy, Joe Gibbs, Riddims with tags , , , , on August 17, 2017 by 1960s: Days of Rage


“The late, great I Roy will forever be remembered for his phenomenal work for producers like Gussie Clarke, Lee Perry and Bunny Lee. Or his association with the Channel One studio. Or his famous feuds with Prince Jazzbo, which were recorded and released in a series of very entertaining records. Or maybe even for the tragic end of his life: when I Roy left this world he was suffering from ill health, was homeless and had just found out his son was killed in prison. Being the legend he was, all material recorded by the man is definitely worth checking out, but in all fairness: his greatest work was captured by other producers and he won’t be remembered for his output for Joe Gibbs. I Roy didn’t record much for Joe to begin with, a few good tunes here and there and an album produced by Bunny Lee in 1979 (which is pretty good, Johnny Clarke sings the melody parts) and that’s it. That said, this recording from 1975 is quite a gem. I Roy sounds upbeat and seems well at home riding the awkward stepping riddim, which updates the Meditations’ ‘Woman is like a shadow.’ Laughing, growling and toasting his way through the track, this makes for one of the finer obscure I Roy records out there. It’s one of those overlooked recordings that turn out a catch when you find it and makes you wonder why it isn’t featured on more compilations out there. In the case of I Roy the answer to that question might be because his back-catalogue of hits is just too large and this isn’t one of them. Don’t let that bother you, though. It makes it all the more worthwhile to track this 7 inch down. …”
Pressure Beat (Audio)
YouTube: Trust No Shadow After Dark

Jah Walton – Gourmandizer / Mighty Two – Mandizer Rock (1976)

Posted in DJ, Joe Gibbs, Pressure Sounds, Riddims with tags , , , on April 7, 2017 by 1960s: Days of Rage


“I once saw some raw footage of a, sadly unfinished, documentary about life in Jamaica. The snippet showed an elderly, proud rastaman who declared that it’s nearly impossible to die of starvation on the island. The country indeed produces a very rich and great variety of fruits and vegetables and it may come as no surprise that many also have a song of praise to their name. The mighty Gourmandizer is one such tune. Gourmandizer also marked the debut of a new dj on the scene. Born in St. Ann, a son of the legendary drummer Count Ossie, the consistently sharp dressed Jah Walton quickly made waves with his vegetarian lifestyle promosong and never looked back. … After which the Joe Gibbs version of the ‘Unchained’ riddim is unleashed (a next cut to ‘Schooling the beat’ off of African Dub part I) with Jah Walton explaining he ‘nah deal wid pork.’ It’s hard to believe this is the first recording of this dj, as it is delivered in such a fine and confident style, you’d expect the man on the mic to be more experienced. I guess it’s fair to say Jah Walton is a natural talent. …”
Pressure Beat (Video)
YouTube: Jah Walton – Gourmandizer

Barrington Levy – Love Your Brother Man: The Early Years (2005)

Posted in Barrington Levy, Dancehall, Dub, Riddims, Studio One with tags , , , , on May 23, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

MI0002019605
“Since acquiring Trojan’s deep catalog, Sanctuary has done a very good to excellent job with the seminal reggae label when it comes to single-artist collections. With vibrant and informative packaging, a crucial track list, and some 12” mixes that are truly stunning, Love Your Brother Man falls into the ‘excellent’ category. Covering Barrington Levy’s early years, what you have here is the blueprint for dancehall singing that held on strong up until the gruff badmen made things much more frantic in the mid-’80s. Levy took the standard roots croon and added a bouncy hiccup to it that emphasizes emotion and allowed singers a totally new, less mannered way to show off their skills. Levy made delivery much more important than pitch control; here, you can listen to how it happened. Slang-filled, feel-good numbers intermingle with righteous spiritual tracks with Levy’s effervescence holding it all together. Familiar riddims from Henry Lawes and Alvin Ranglin fill the disc with one cut from producer Whitfield Henry hinting at Levy’s digital future. Later, a confident and more cultural Levy would have bigger hits than the ones here, but Love Your Brother Man is hungry and anxious Levy. Listening to him change dancehall music is fascinating.”
allmusic

“This album showcases The Radics at their peak — sparse, dark and aggresive and it showcases Barrington’s distinctive vocal style which was so strong and influential as to go on to influence many up and coming ragga artists a few years later. Scientist, King Tubby’s and Henry ‘Junjo’ Lawes are behind these stripped down primal rhythms and conscious vocal styles. It is at the heart of it, a re-issue of Levy’s earlier ‘Bounty Hunter’ album with a few extras thrown in. ‘Collie Weed’ versions Slim Smith’s ‘My Conversation’ with its hypnotic piano hook. ‘Looking My Love’ versions Cocoa T’s excellent ‘Rocking Dolly’ and is chanted over the same Studio One rhythm. ‘Bounty Hunter’ is another high point, with its monolithic linear dub and enigmatic chant about being hunted for over 2,000 years — as Style Scott’s thunderous snares collapse, tense and reform in the echo chamber. This is good music — but Trojan do not dig up any deep vault rarities here, or obscure discomix 12’s here — which is a shame, because there are a number of rarities from Barrington Levy which do need re-issue.”
Reggae Vibes

YouTube: Love Your Brother Man – The Early Years

soundcloud: Love Your Brother Man: The Early Years Mix
01. Shaolin Temple (aka Pretty Looks) (0:00) 02. I’m Not In Love (1:50) 03. Run Come Ya (4:34) 04. Black Heart Man (7:44) 05. Full Understanding (9:50) 06. Wedding Ring (12:04) 07. Whom Shall I Be Afraid Of (12:43) 08. Skylarking (16:31) 09. Love of Jah (21:17) 10. Time is So Hard (24:18) 11. Jah Life (27:17) 12. Looking My Love (30:10) 13. A Yah We Deh (34:35) 14. Ragga Muffin (37:04) 15. Under Mi Sensi (40:45) 16. Jah is With Me (44:57) 17. Many Changes in Life (48:17) 18. Poor Man Style (50:44) 19. Mary Long Tongue (53:47) 20. Lost and Found (56:21) 21. Murderer (58:27) 22. Mind You Hurt My Mom (1:02:00) 23. Now-A-Days (1:02:29) 24. Revelation (1:02:58) 25. Captivity (1:06:32) 26. Collie Weed (1:07:15) 27. Look Youthman (1:08:16) 28. 21 Girls Salute (1:11:14)

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-correction-train-money-disc
“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.”
allmusic

YouTube: Correction Train

Welton Irie / Sylford Walker – Ghettoman Corner (1979)

Posted in Dancehall, DJ, Dub, Glen Brown, I-Roy, King Tubby, Riddims with tags , , , , , , on December 27, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

WeltonIrie-GhettomanCorner1977
“Welton Irie nices up the ‘Ghettoman Corner’ on the title track to his 1979 Glen Brown produced and King Tubby mixed album. Recouping once again the money he laid out for Lloyd Parks’ seminal ‘Slaving’ single, for the title track Brown oversees yet another fabulous cut on the riddim. There again, ‘Slaving’ was good enough to support them all, with this version remixed by King Tubby in steppers style. Obviously thrilled with the result, Irie lets loose with a superb stream of consciousness toast that’s as propulsive as the riddim itself. Bouncing from cultural themes to the religious realm, Irie bustles about, pumping up the excitement, even when he inexplicably tosses in a counting song that sends ever more men to mow a meadow. ‘Corner’ was a DJ spectacular, inevitably entitling the DJ’s 1979 Brown produced album.”
allmusic

YouTube: Ghettoman Corner, Black Man Get Up Tan Up Pon Foot (Give Jah The Glory) b/w King Tubby’s – Version, Sylford Walker-Chant Down Babylon, Welton Irie-Ghettoman Corner, I Roy-Black Man Time, Money Man Skank, Mr Irie, Greetings, Give Jah The Glory

Prince Alla – Only Love Can Conquer (1976-1979)

Posted in Prince Alla, Rastafarians, Riddims with tags , , , , , on December 9, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

B+F-Prince-Allah-sfw
“This collection of singles by the relatively obscure roots-reggae singer Prince Alla (backed by the Soul Syndicate, the preeminent reggae studio band of the seventies) is a revelation. Imagine someone with the tone of a young Johnnie Clarke and the expressiveness of Sugar Minott at his best, and then take away the lover’s rock and you’ve got Prince Alla: an angel’s voice with an apocalyptic edge. If you want a good distillation of the Rastafarian message, look no further. It’s all here, from the condemnation of materialism (‘They Never Love,’ complete with a dub version) to the unapologetic sexism (‘Lot’s Wife,’ ‘Lady Deceiver’) and the political rabble-rousing (‘Youthman in the Ghetto’). Through it all, the Soul Syndicate burns with a thick, slow one-drop groove that never lets up the pressure. If you don’t own this disc, repent now.”
allmusic

“A superb set showcasing the vocal talents of Prince Alla, the archetypal roots singer and ghetto sufferer. Voiced and mixed at King Tubby’s studio by Scientist (who also contributes a couple of extended dub mixes) and Tubby himself. This compilation includes the original vocal cuts of ‘Stone’, ‘Lot’s Wife’ and ‘Bucket Bottom’ which appeared in their dub versions on Freedom Sounds In Dub.”
Blood and Fire

YouTube: Lot’s Wife, Only Love Can Conquer, They Never Love, Lady Deceiver + Version, Youthman in the Ghetto (discomix), Stone, Black Rose (Stone Riddim), Bucket Bottom

Lee “Scratch” Perry – Arkology (1997)

Posted in Black Ark, Dub, Lee "Scratch" Perry, Riddims with tags , , on August 14, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

perry_arkology
“Purportedly the definitive Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry compilation, the three-CD set Arkology is loaded with good intentions and is carefully constructed, but with a back catalog like Perry’s — where it’s nearly impossible to find out what’s what — definitive in this case is a dream. Still, the compilers have done a fine job of providing an overview of Perry’s career that makes sense musically, historically, and culturally. For those who want to jump headlong into Perry’s world, this is the way to go. (Otherwise, buying two to three individual releases would be recommended.) Arkology’s foundation is the 1979 anthology Scratch on the Wire; the compilers took those tracks and added a significant number of remixes and a few previously unreleased dub tracks to give it some weight. And that is perhaps the set’s biggest drawback; it doesn’t cover quite enough of Perry’s career. Remixes are nice, but a representative sampling of the early, mid-, and late periods at Black Ark would have been better, as well as a few of the early-’60s ska tracks that didn’t make it onto Heartbeat’s excellent Chicken Scratch compilation. There are also some irritating audio considerations here; sometimes reggae reissues lose that warm, extremely loud bass sound that is crucial to the riddims. That’s not always the case on this release, but there are some moments when you wish there was just a little more blood coming from the speakers. So, all that said, is Arkology worth it? Absolutely. Don’t think that this large purchase will give you all the crucial Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry recordings; it provides a good overview and is an excellent introduction, but consider it the start, rather than the completion, of your journey with Scratch and the Upsetters.”
allmusic

“Work your way back through everything you know about hip-hop, electronica, punk rock and post rock, and somehow, some way, you always end up at Black Ark. It was at Black Ark, a four-track studio in the suburbs of Kingston, Jamaica, where, in the mid-and late 1970s, producer, songwriter and indie-label entrepreneur Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry transfigured reggae’s loping cadence and R&B heart into something darker, holier and more dangerous — a music of visionary rhythmic textures and biblical-warrior vengeance. Many of the dub, sampling and remix techniques routinely exploited by the Beastie Boys, Wu-Tang Clan and the Chemical Brothers were forged by Perry on the humble, overstressed Black Ark console. And Perry, now in his 60s, was broadcasting the heavy manners of premillennial, black-exile tension on classic Black Ark productions like Max Romeo’s ‘War In a Babylon’ and ‘Police and Thieves,’ by Junior Murvin, when Tricky was little bigger than a spliff. …”
Rolling Stone

“Arkology is an anthology of Black Ark treasures collected and annotated by Perry experts Steve Barrow and David Katz, a magnificent four hour set of music that is an absolutely essential collection for both old and new Lee Perry fans. A 52 page booklet is included, featuring a biography of Perry nicely punctuated by many unpublished interview quotes, an annotated track listing, terrific photos, and an earthy graphic design. It’s one of those sets that makes you feel that you’re buying something with the weight of history. Each CD of Arkology is made to look like a reel of master tape – a nice graphic touch. Perhaps Perry would have named them scrolls. Like Biblical scrolls, the music resonates with wisdom, righteousness, and – of course – an almighty groove….”
Reggae Vibes

YouTube: THE CONGOS – Don’t Blame On I, MAX ROMEO – War In A Babylon/THE UPSETTERS – Revelation Dub, Police & Thieves – Junior Murvin, Vibrate On – Augustus Pablo, Bird in Hand, THE CONGOS – Congoman, THE HEPTONES & LEE PERRY – Why Must I Version / THE HEPTONES – Make Up Your Mind