Archive for U-Roy

U-Roy – Version Galore (1971)

Posted in Riddims, U-Roy with tags , on September 17, 2017 by 1960s: Days of Rage


“‘All of a sudden, Jamaica awoke one morning and U-Roy was everywhere…’ – So read the original liner notes to this classic reggae LP, which originally hit in 1971 and washed over the island like a grooving tropical storm. U-Roy was a true reggae pioneer, dubbed The Originator for good reason. Bursting onto the Jamaican scene in the early 1970s, he pioneered the vocal approach called ‘toasting,’ which in addition to bringing Jamaican music into a new era, was also heavily influential on an American vocal style also in its infancy: rapping. This full-length, his first after a string of singles (mostly on the Treasure Isle and other Duke Reid labels, run by the famed producer and studio owner), rolls like a crazy party where a wobbly, but talented, ‘master of ceremonies’ grabs the mic and won’t let go. Speaking over and around songs that already have straight-ahead vocals on them, U-Roy shows the world why he is considered an iconoclast and trailblazer. In all honesty, there are few standouts on the album since they all run a similar course, and all are captivating in their own way. Modern listeners will especially note ‘Tide Is High,’ originally by the Paragons (featuring dulcet-toned vocalist John Holt) and recorded later as a 1980 smash hit by Blondie. Each track here is a new adventure, and while U-Roy’s approach might take some getting used to, it will eventually capture your ears as it did the entire island of Jamaica in the ‘60s and ‘70s. Sit back, drop the needle, and enjoy.”
get on down
YouTube: Version Galore (1971 Full Album)

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U-Roy – Jah Son of Africa (1978)

Posted in Dancehall, Tony Robinson, U-Roy with tags , , on March 28, 2017 by 1960s: Days of Rage


“The best way to introduce oneself to the artistry of legendary deejay U Roy would probably be to check out either With a Flick of My Musical Wrist (on Trojan) or Super Boss (on Esoldun). But another good place to start is with the impressive collection of albums he made in the late 1970s for Virgin’s Front Line imprint. When the Front Line catalog was first reissued in the early 1990s, most of the tracks on Jah Son of Africa were included on a U Roy compilation entitled Natty Rebel: Extra Version (another found its way onto a similar compilation called Version of Wisdom). Anyone who missed out on those fine collections can buy this reissue with confidence; it finds U Roy at the peak of his powers, chatting over dub versions of such classic tracks as the Wailers ‘Exodus’ and the Gladiators’ ‘Stick a Bush,’ his much-imitated whoops and interjections showcased beautifully by producer Tony Robinson (of Aswad). Highlights include the title track and the delightful ‘Tom Drunk.’ Highly recommended.”
allmusic
YouTube: Jah son of Africa, Rivers of babylon, Tom drunk, Peace and love in the ghetto, Running around town with Tom, Dick & Harry, I got to tell you goodbye, Herbman skanking, Africa for the Africans, Love in the arena,

U-Roy – Dread in a Babylon (1975)

Posted in DJ, U-Roy with tags , on April 24, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

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‘Even without the music, this album would still leap off the racks; its photo of U Roy exhaling a mushroom cloud of marijuana smoke from his ever-available pipe ranks among the all-time greatest covers, regardless of genre. However, U Roy doesn’t have any trouble coming across as a distinctive presence; his scattershot repertoire of barks, chants, and screams is as critical or more important as the deft, unobtrusive backing woven behind him. U Roy imposes his own willful style, regardless of setting. Sometimes he pulls off a positively poppy veneer on tracks like “Runaway Girl” or “Silver Bird”; other times, he extemporizes slightly ahead of the beat on “Natty Don’t Fear” or “The Great Psalms.” His lyrics run the gamut of Rastafarian concerns, from facing adversity (“Dreadlocks Dread”) to female troubles (“I Can’t Love Another”) and royalist run-ins (“Chalice in the Palace”). The uncredited musicians stay out of the way (although they get their own album-closing instrumental, “Trench Town Rock”). This album ranks among the ’70s dub masterpieces, even if the odd lyrical clinker keeps it from perfection; “Runaway Girl”‘s glistening skank can’t paper over its sexism (which suggests the girl in question “may be nice/but you’re not that smart”). Even so, sometimes an artist only needs charisma to get across, and U Roy handily wins on that score.’
allmusic

‘… Mixing together fantastic dub beats, and also being largely responsible for the practice of “toasting,” it is due to the efforts and vision of U-Roy that there is a hip-hop genre today. While he continues to make music today, there is perhaps no better a representation of his sound, and no more important a record for so many genres then U-Roy’s brilliant 1975 release, Dread In A Babylon. As the 1960’s turned into the 1970’s, portable sound systems became more readily available, and large dance parties began to move out of the dance halls and into open, public spaces. This trend, which occurred across the globe, made the necessity of a DJ far more important. Yet, it was far more then just playing songs; the DJ had to be able to keep the crowd’s mood good with his skills on the microphone. Presenting clever rhyming and commentary, which took on the name “toasting,” this is where the entire hip-hop genre began. In fact, early hip-hop DJ’s, like DJ Kool Herc and Afrika Bambaataa were far more akin to “toasters” then they were to modern day emcees. Among all these early toasters, U-Roy was unquestionably the finest of the group, and the rhymes that he presented over early dub plates are like nothing else found at the time. U-Roy’s debut record completely changed the face of Jamaican music, proving that there was far more to the island then just the reggae sound. The cover of Dread In A Babylon has also become massively memorable, as there are actually four different versions, all featuring the same theme: U-Roy disappearing behind a giant cloud of smoke. Without question, one of the most iconic album covers in history, many make the case that, even without the fantastic music, the album would have done well simply by this cover.’
The Daily Guru

YouTube: Dread In A Babylon – runaway girl, chalice in the palace, i can’t love another, dread locks dread, the great psalms, natty don’t fear, african message, silver bird, listen to the teacher, trench town rock

U Roy – You’ll never get away (1970)

Posted in Duke Reid, Tommy McCook, Treasure Isle, U-Roy with tags , , , on April 5, 2014 by 1960s: Days of Rage

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YouTube: You’ll never get away

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

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“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.”
allmusic

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. …”
Wikipedia

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

U Roy – Call On I + DJ Special (1974)

Posted in DJ, U-Roy with tags , on December 11, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

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YouTube: Call On I + DJ Special

Rupie Edwards

Posted in Blue Beat Records, DJ, Dub, Rupie Edwards, Ska, Tommy McCook, U-Roy with tags , , , , , , on October 14, 2013 by 1960s: Days of Rage

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“Jamaica’s more eccentric producers get all the glory, but it was the less flamboyant Rupie Edwards who arguably made the biggest impact on the island’s music scene. As the inventor of the one-riddim album, and the first to popularize dub abroad, the singing producer signposted reggae’s path for posterity. Rupie was born in Goshen, Jamaica, on July 4, 1945, and his family moved to Kingston when he was 13. Talent shows beckoned, as did a career as a mechanic, but the singer was still in his teens when he cut his debut single, 1962’s ‘Guilty Convict.’ Duos were all the rage, and Edwards joined forces with Junior Menz as the Ambassadors, then added Dobby Dobson to create the vocal trio the Virtues. Their singles were sporadic, and so Rupie turned to self-production in 1966, self-producing four of the Virtues’ numbers, as well as a couple of solo cuts. By 1968 Edwards had had enough, and launched his own Success label and record shop, located at 136 1/2 Orange Street. Success’ name quickly became a self-fulfilling prophecy, with the reggae era splattered with its hits. Given his fine, warm tenor, Edwards’ stream of solo singles sold well, but he made his real mark with his productions of others. Veterans and stars-to-be both passed through his doors during the next few years, among them the Heptones, Bob Andy, Errol Dunkley, the Ethiopians, Joe Higgs, Dobby Dobson, and Dennis Alcapone. …”
allmusic

“Rupie Edwards (born Rupert Lloyd Edwards, 4 July 1945, Saint Ann Parish, Jamaica) is a Jamaican reggae singer and record producer. Rupie Edwards, an only child, moved to Kingston in 1958, where he set up his first band while still at school. His first recording was ‘Guilty Convict’ b/w ‘Just Because’, for L.S. ‘Little Wonder’ Smith in 1962, released on Melodisc’s Blue Beat label in the UK, and was paid £15 for the session. After recording a few singles, he became involved with the Virtues and, from 1968, started to focus only on his own productions. By the beginning of the 1970s, apart from releasing singles as a singer, he had recorded artists like The Heptones, Bob Andy, Johnny Clarke, Joe Higgs, Gregory Isaacs and The Ethiopians on his own record labels ‘Success’ and ‘Opportunity’. He also worked with DJs such as U-Roy and I-Roy, and released some instrumental versions with his studio band, The Rupie Edwards All Stars. The group included musicians such as saxophonist Tommy McCook, trombone player Vin Gordon, drummer Carlton ‘Santa’ Davis, guitarist Hux Brown, pianist Gladstone Anderson, bassist Clifton ‘Jackie’ Jackson and organist Winston Wright.”
Wikipedia

YouTube: The Yamaha Skank, – U Roy Junior – The Yamaha Skank – – Water House (King Tubby & Rupie Edwards) – Doctor Satan Echo Chamber — Shortie the President – President A Mash Up The Resident — Joe White – President Rock — Underground People – Rebel Dina (version) — The Uniques – My conversation, My little red top 12″, Rise And Fall / Rise In Dub (1976), Give me love and affection, I’m Gonna Live Some Life