Archive for Peter Tosh

Equal Rights – Peter Tosh (1977)

Posted in Bob Marley and the Wailers, Peter Tosh with tags , on June 18, 2017 by 1960s: Days of Rage


Equal Rights was to be the album that propelled Peter Tosh to the top of the reggae world — the rival to onetime fellow Wailer Bob Marley. Time has shown that this lofty aspiration was not borne out, but Equal Rights remains among the handful of best, and most influential, reggae albums ever recorded. Tosh was always the most militant of the original Wailers and this album reflects that outlook. Whether it is preaching about the unity of the African diaspora (‘African’), protesting conditions in South Africa (‘Apartheid’), or giving a more general call to arms (‘Get Up, Stand Up’), Equal Rights is a political album. This is at times crippling, as some tracks are more effective as political statements than they are as songs. This, in fact, is a primary difference between Tosh and MarleyMarley‘s political statements never overwhelmed his songs. Unfortunately, this is not always the case with Tosh. That being said, ‘Downpresser Man’ (based on a folk standard), ‘Stepping Razor,’ and his definitive version of ‘Get Up, Stand Up’ are as good a trio of songs as you will find on any album, reggae or not. Tosh‘s singing is angry and forceful and the music is intricate and distinctive. On these three tracks you can see why people thought that Tosh could become a transcendent international star. The rest of the album, however, shows why he never quite lived up to that potential.”
allmusic
W – Equal Rights
YouTube: Equal Rights 1:10:15

“Simmer Down” – The Skatalites (1963)

Posted in Bob Marley and the Wailers, Coxsone Dodd, Peter Tosh, Ska, Studio One with tags , , , , on December 27, 2016 by 1960s: Days of Rage

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“‘Simmer Down’ was the first single released by The Wailers, accompanied by the ska supergroup, The Skatalites, and produced by Clement ‘Coxsone’ Dodd in 1963. It was the number one hit in Jamaica in February, 1964. The song was directed to the ‘Rude Boys’ of the ghettos of Jamaica at the time, sending them a message to cool down or ‘Simmer Down’ with all the violence and crime going on in Kingston. The subject matter of ‘Simmer Down’ made The Wailers stand out amongst their contemporaries. The Wailers at this time contained Bob Marley, Bunny Wailer, Peter Tosh, Junior Braithwaite, Cherry Smith, and Beverley Kelso. It was Bob Marley’s first hit and his career as a songwriter and performer took off from there. Although ‘Simmer Down’ was a hit, Peter Tosh, one of the three original Wailers, has said in an interview that he hated it.”
Wikipedia

“The Skatalites are a ska band from Jamaica. They played initially between 1963 and 1965, and recorded many of their best known songs in the period, including ‘Guns of Navarone.’ They also played on records by Prince Buster and backed many other Jamaican artists who recorded during that period.[1] They reformed in 1983 and have played together ever since.The founders of the Skatalites were Tommy McCook (died 1998), Rolando Alphonso (died 1998), Lloyd Brevett (died 2012), Lloyd Knibb (died 2011), Don Drummond (died 1969), Jah Jerry Haynes (died 2007), Jackie Mittoo (died 1990), Johnny Moore (died 2008) and Jackie Opel (died 1970). These ten musicians started to play together from 1955, when Kingston’s recording studios started to develop. Tommy McCook was the first member of the band to record, though not for commercial release: he played with Don Hitchman’s Group in 1953. In spring 1964, The Skatalites recorded their first LP Ska Authentic at Studio One in Kingston and toured Jamaica as the creators of ska. …”
The Skatalites – Simmer down

YouTube: Simmer down, I Don’t Need Your Love

Peter Tosh – Vampire/Dracula (1976)

Posted in Dub, Peter Tosh with tags , on September 5, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

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“Another in the steam of Peter Tosh’s self-produced militant singles from the mid-Seventies, “Vampire” was as haunting as it’s title. Set to a tough rhythm, all snapping cymbals and heart pulsing bass, filled with eerie electro-effects, as dense and ominous as a fog filled night, Tosh takes on the neck biting beast, an allusion to the bloodsuckers of Babylon. Released in Jamaica only in 1976, on the artist’s own Intel Diplo HIM label in 1976, ‘Vampire’ was a masterful, and popular, roots rocker. Eleven years later, Tosh again battled the creature of the night on his No Nuclear War album. Much had changed musically in the interim, and now the artist gives the song a light dancehall sheen. However, the rhythm is just as insistent and militant, the wolf still bays across the intro, but the sweet female backing vocals and lush keyboards takes the chill off. And so, Tosh fights valiantly on, trying to stake this wicked blood sucker once and for all. And while the earlier version was certainly more atmospheric, this time around the vampire hunter definitely had more international appeal.”
allmusic

YouTube: Vampire/Dracula