Archive for Big Youth

Keith Rowe – Stop that train / Groovy situation / Living My Life (1967-77-78)

Posted in Big Youth, Dancehall, Dub, Lee "Scratch" Perry with tags , , , on December 16, 2017 by 1960s: Days of Rage

Keith & Tex are the Jamaican rocksteady duo of Keith Rowe and Phillip Texas Dixon, best known for their 1967 hit ‘Stop That Train‘. Keith Rowe (Born Keith Barrington Rowe) grew up in the Washington Gardens area of Saint Andrew Parish, across the road from Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry’s home and future studio, on the outskirts of Kingston. Phillip Texas Dixon grew up in the Pembroke Hall area and they were introduced by a mutual friend. Starting out as a five man group singing on the corner, they were encouraged to try to get recorded. They soon began auditioning for local producers but were rejected by Prince Buster, Coxsone Dodd and Duke Reid, the group having lost confidence broke up leaving two. Keith and Tex were left and auditioned for Derrick Harriott where they eventually found success. …  Rowe joined the US Army in 1972, staying in for twenty years, but also found time for music, recording as a solo artist, working with producer Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, releasing tracks such as ‘Groovy Situation’ and ‘Living My Life’, and recording further singles in the US, including a few on his own KEBAR label. …”
YouTube: Stop that train – Keith, Tex & Friends, Groovy situation, Living My Life

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

Jah Stitch – Original Ragga Muffin (1975-1977)

Posted in Barrington Levy, Big Youth, Bunny Lee, DJ, Dub, Jah Stitch, King Tubby with tags , , , , , on October 28, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

“With the great King Tubby dubbing legendary producer Bunny Lee, and the results crowned by the deejay stylings of Jah Stitch himself, Original Ragga Muffin: 1975-1977 works on multiple levels. You are able to marvel at any one element (Lee’s rugged rhythms, Tubby’s fantastic versions, Stitch’s vocals) or simply bask in the glory of the overall product. Though initially pegged as an imitator of the great Big Youth (both were once employed by Jamaica’s Tippertone sound system), Stitch clearly has his own style. Maintaining more of an even keel than Youth, Stitch works his themes through repetitive chanting, punctuating phrases with ‘Huh!’ shouts that demand your attention. On ‘African People (3 in 1),’ he presents a three-part acronym breakdown of the words ‘Africa,’ ‘Zion,’ and ‘Ethiopia’ to wonderful effect. Unfortunately, Stitch fails to main the lyrical creativity on the material that follows. But anything the deejay lacks in poetic ingenuity he makes up for in the dedication to his subjects: ‘Watch Your Step Youthman,’ ‘Sinners Repent Your Soul,’ ‘Militant Man,’ and ‘Real Born African’ being particularly revealing titles. Other highlights include two vocals over Johnny Clarke’s ‘Crazy Baldhead’ (one a humorous jibe at rival producer Joe Gibbs) and ‘No Dread Can’t Dread.’ On the latter, Stitch sounds like he’s jogging to the pace of the great, chugging rhythm, chanting ‘Natty dread a-the stal-a-wart.’ Guests include Vivian ‘Yabby U’ Jackson, who contributes two productions, and Horace Andy: Stitch follows up the singer’s great ‘Zion Gate’ vocal with his own ‘Every Wicked Have to Crawl’ discourse. The overall results of the deejay’s plain-speak over Tubby’s bass-heavy reductions create an appropriately dark, smoky atmosphere. Combined with the five Stitch cuts on Blood and Fire’s If Deejay Was Your Trade compilation, Original Ragga Muffin provides the best overview of an underrated performer.”

YouTube: Give Jah The Glory (Burning Spear – Wadada), African People, Sinners Repent Your Soul, Militant Man, No Dread Can’t Dead, Ragga Muffin Style, Real Born African, Cool Down Youthman, Prophets & African Queen (Reverse Disco), King of the Arena

Big Youth – Natty Universal Dread, 1973-1979 (2000)

Posted in Big Youth, DJ, Dub, Joe Gibbs with tags , , , on September 20, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

“It should come as no surprise that the first collection to do full justice to the career of reggae DJ Big Youth was released by the Blood & Fire label, which has already distinguished itself with an exquisite catalog of reissues and collections designed to bring the music of reggae’s classical period (the early to mid-’70s) back into the marketplace. This three-disc box set includes 51 tracks from Big Youth’s most productive period, beginning with the early singles recorded for Joe Gibbs and on his own Negusa Nagast label (which included the charming ‘Hot Cross Bun’ and ‘Hot Stock,’ a collaboration with Gregory Isaacs and Leroy Smart), and ending with the topical “Can’t Take Wah Happen on a West” (written in the wake of the disastrous Westmoreland Flood of 1979) and the blistering ‘Political Confusion,’ which name-checks Margaret Thatcher and Jimmy Carter. This is also the period that found him releasing his bizarre and wonderful cover versions — ‘Hit the Road Jack,’ ‘Proud Mary’ (titled ‘River Boat’ here), and, best of all, ‘Sugar Sugar.’ As always, the digitally restored sound is exquisite, but this set does mark the first time that Blood & Fire has messed up on packaging. It’s beautiful and the booklet is jam-packed with rare photos and extensive liner notes, but the individual disc sleeves are equipped with annoying and self-destructing styrofoam spindles. Don’t let that fact dissuade you from buying this marvelous collection, but be forewarned.”

Natty Universal Dread 1973–1979 is a 3-CD-Box-set by Big Youth, released in 2001.”

YouTube: Mosiah Garvey (extended), Can’t Take Wah Happen On A West + Dub, Political Confusion, Downtown Kingston Pollution / Give Praises / Hot Cross Bun, Children Children / Mr Buddy, Battle Of The Giants Part 1&2, The Wise Sheep, Jah Jah Love Them (Extended)

Errol Dunkley – Movie Star (1974)

Posted in Big Youth, Dub, Errol Dunkley, Gregory Isaacs with tags , , , on May 27, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

“In one of those sad twists of fate, today most reggae fans are more familiar with the DJ version of this song, than Errol Dunkley’s impassioned original, thanks to the success of Big Youth’s ‘Every Nigger Is a Star’, which hit big in both Jamaica and the UK. A pity, because Dunkley’s vocal version is absolutely sublime. Not released until 1975, the song was actually cut a few years earlier, back when the singer and Gregory Isaacs were sharing studio time to further the fortune of their newly launched label African Museum. In fact, ‘Movie Star’ was cut at the pair’s first joint session. The smokiest of brass, elegant piano, jangles of lead guitar, bubbly organ, and compulsive rhythm guitar riff, all propelled by the propulsive drums and bass line made this riddim a star, and one which continues to be versioned to this day. But as fabulous as the backing is, it’s the singer that made this song unforgettable, as Dunkley vows his love to his nobody of a girl. Lack of fame or fortune is meaningless to him, and even if her dress sense is equally bereft, he adores her regardless, a sentiment he makes clear with every word he passionately sings. That empowering emotion, the heart-felt, semi-cultural lyrics theme, and the sensational backing all combined into this phenomenal masterpiece. Dunkley released a deluge of stellar singles, this was one of the most crucial.”

YouTube: Errol Dunkley – Movie Star

Prince Jazzbo (1972)

Posted in Big Youth, Bunny Lee, Channel One, Coxsone Dodd, Dancehall, DJ, Lee "Scratch" Perry, Prince Jazzbo, U-Roy with tags , , , , , , , , on May 23, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

“… Prince Jazzbo is one of the survivors of reggae music. While he has never been as important as other 70s DJs such as U-Roy or Big Youth, it is Jazzbo who retains a charismatic personal style and a reasonably healthy following through his label, Ujama, for which he produces and occasionally records. Like many others, Jazzbo first recorded for Coxsone Dodd’s Studio One label in the early 70s. Legend has it that Jazzbo had come to Kingston from the countryside and was initially passed over by Dodd, who expected little from the skinny youth. However, Jazzbo eventually pestered his way into the studio and took the microphone.”

“Prince Jazzbo (born Linval Roy Carter, 3 September 1951, Clarendon, Jamaica) is a Jamaican reggae and dancehall deejay and producer. Prince Jazzbo began recording with Coxsone Dodd’s Studio One label in the early 1970s. He went on to work on his own releases with Bunny Lee, producing as well in collaboration with many artists as a vocalist and producer for labels including his own, Ujama. His best work was probably done in collaboration with legendary producer Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry.”

YouTube: Prince Jazzbo – Crab Walking, Mr Harry Skank, Ital Corner, Skylarking riddim mix, Crime don’t pay

Spotify: Prince Jazzbo & Ujama Music

Dennis Alcapone – Rub up a daughter + version (1972)

Posted in Big Youth, Dennis Alcapone, DJ, Dub with tags , , , on April 1, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

YouTube: Rub up a daughter + version

Big Youth – Screaming Target (1973)

Posted in Big Youth, DJ with tags , on January 29, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

“Achieving his first success on wax with ‘S 90 Skank’ for producer Keith Hudson in 1972, Big Youth recorded Screaming Target, his debut full-length, one year later for Gussie Clarke. That album, along with a handful of 45s from the period, was largely responsible for bringing the DJ art form forward after U-Roy’s innovations. Here, in place of hip, jive-derived phrases, listeners find Big Youth ruminating on themes that exemplified the new consciousness of the 1970s. The set-opening title track, for instance, finds the DJ promoting literacy and general positivity, Youth-style, over K.C. White’s ‘No No No.’ Similarly, he chants down slavery and calls for equal pay for equal work on ‘Honesty’.”

“When people hear the term ‘island music,’ most immediately think of the reggae sound, and go no further in the thought process. Though the reggae style dominated for years, the reality is, like anywhere else in the world, there many other musical styles in play beyond just reggae. In many ways, the dancehall/dub style of music had more impact throughout the world than reggae, as it can be seen as the catalyst for the SKA movement, hip hop scene, and had a large influence on many areas of the punk scene as well. Though the dub style is based in reggae, and it often shares the political and social overtones, the dub style has its own distinctive feel, and produced its own list of music legends. Among this list is one of the loudest and most well respected voices in the history of Jamaican music, Big Youth. Though he gained the nickname long before he picked up a microphone, Big Youth (real name: Manley Augustus Buchanan) has one of the most distinctive sounds ever, and has been cited as an influence by artists across genres, perhaps most notably, The Clash. Setting the standard in vocal delivery, lyrical content, as well as DJing style and skills, few artists share as much talent as Big Youth, and his resulting albums remain some of the most stunning ever recorded. After gaining success though a few hit singles, Big Youth entered the studio and recorded his monumental 1972 debut record, Screaming Target.”
The Daily Guru

YouTube: Screaming Target, Pride and Joy Rock, Be Careful, Tipper Tone Rocking, One of these fine days, Screaming Target (Version), Solomon A Gunday, Honesty, I Am Alright,
Concrete Jungle