Somwe of the best Dancehall toasters took on the names of famous Hollywood stars in the '70's such as Lee Van Cleef. Charlie Chaplin and of course, Clint Eastwood. He is the younger brother of well-known Roots DJ Trinity and a good friend of Dillinger, another famous name in the genre of Reggae DJ. These tracks are produced by Bunny Lee and all of them are mixed by King Tubby. The music was played by the Aggrovators (Sly & Robbie) in 1979. Clint Eastwood has his own style of toasting. It is influenced by his elder brother Trinity, but definitely he's got his own. His rolling pronunciation of the "R', Kung-Fu style of breathing (in the style of Dillinger) and variety of subjects make this record a very welcome addition to your Roots and Culture collection.
Desmond Dekker unleashed a flood of fine singles across the '60s and early '70s, all under the aegis of producer Leslie Kong. Taking a chance on an untried youngster barely into his teens, who'd already been shown the door by Coxsone Dodd and Duke Reid, Kong nurtured Dekker to international stardom, only to die suddenly in 1971, two years after the singer's breakthrough. In those nine years, however, the singer and producer recorded a canon of music that remains untarnished by time, a vast catalogue that continues to enrapture new generations of fans. Inevitably with time, lazy labels tended to pick from an ever-shrinking pot of songs, making for a growing pile of bewildering compilations that all seemed to feature many of the same numbers -- which is what made Intensified such a treat. Light on the hits, lighter still on the heavily represented songs, this compilation hones in chiefly on the rocksteady and early reggae age, making it a must for all Dekker fans. A wonderful set.
A DJ as famous as his gangster namesake, Dillinger was one of the second wave of Jamaican toasters who sprung up in the wake of the success of U-Roy, Big Youth, and Dennis Alcapone. By the mid-'70s the young Dillinger had rapped his way to the top of the pack, winning international acclaim. Renowned for his quick wit, irreverent raps and whacked sense of humour, the DJ remains one of the most innovative and humorous toasters of any era.. Between 1977 and 1979, Dillinger released a slew of domestic hits recorded with producer Bunny Lee collected on this album along with a number of King Tubby dub versions.
Trombone master Don Drummond was among the seminal figures behind the evolution of ska - a founding member of the legendary Skatalites, he was the genre's most prolific composer, with well over 300 songs to his name before his brief career ended in tragedy. Drummond's genius did not come without a price, however - a notoriously eccentric man who suffered from bouts of manic depression, his erratic behaviour earned him the nickname "Don Cosmic" from Dodd, and it was a moniker he rarely failed to live up to. Still, when Studio One musical director Jackie Mittoo set about assembling the Skatalites in 1964, he did not hesitate to bring Drummond aboard, and he quickly emerged among the group's creative and spiritual leaders. After leaving Studio One and the Skatalites, Don Drummond joined forces with Duke Reid for his Treasure Isle label for which these classic titles were recorded.
God rest Jackie's soul, taken from us at the age of 42. A Caribbean innovator, a funky, soul-reggae organ groover, a keyboard king, a keyboard nut, this is the four-lettered word in smouldering instrumental reggae and dub by a sadly departed master. Jackie Mittoo, Hammondiste non-pareil of Jamaica, leaves essential 60s-early 70s Studio One (where much smoke was burned onto wax, including backing Bob Marley on piano while with the Skatalites) and, some years on in seventies, teams up with essential Bunny "Striker" Lee, producer of Johnny Clarke, Cornel Campbell, U Roy and much great essential Tubby's Dub. This album operates on two levels at once: the riveting dub phenomenon (held metronomically by the aforementioned Riddim Twins Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare and others), and Jackie's innovative keyboard prowess, spinning Leslies, melodic sense and klassik compositions. If you don't know who Jackie Mittoo is, it's time to find out.
Old-time toaster Jah Stitch began his career with the Tippertone and Black Harmony sound-systems before cutting his first sides for Flabba Holt and the ubiquitous Bunny "Striker" Lee, who produced all the tracks here. One of a number of cultural Dee-Jays who rose to prominence in Big Youth's slipstream circa 1976 - with Jah Yout' subsequently replacing him as Tippertones lead MC - Stitch had the distinct advantage of riding some of the era's toughest rhythms. Mixed by King Tubby and (then) Prince Jammy with the Aggrovators as musicians.
His recording career began with the legendary West Indian record producer Clement "Coxsone" Dodd. After leaving Coxsone, Boothe recorded for Keith Hudson and Leslie Kong. He then formed the group 'Conscious Minds' with B.B. Seaton. Boothe was known as "Mr. Rocksteady" for his prominence during the late 70's. The 'Freedom Street' album is a special compilation of hit singles released on the Beverley's record label. It includes the universally inspired title track, along with a series of other popular singles. Produced by Leslie Kong and Warrick Lyn. Backed by the Beverly's All Star and Conscious Minds Band.
A master of love songs and roots material, Leroy Smart has been on the reggae scene since the early '70s. He was raised in Kingston's Alpha Catholic Boys Home and began recording in the early '70s. Smart worked with such producers as Gussie Clarke, Joe Joe Hookin, and Bunny Lee who produced the tracks collected here, mixed by King Tubby and Prince Jammy at Channel One studios.
Linval Thompson is a reggae singer with a firmly conscious lyrical bent and a sweet, supple voice. This album, 'Cool Down', contains tracks produced by dancehall King Bunny Lee, with Striker's trademark powerful one-drop and trebley hi hats throughout, and the great Aggrovators as musicians. The message is righteous and the arrangements are pure Channel One.
The Skatalites are a music group from Jamaica that played a major part in popularising ska. Consisting of some of the best musicians in Jamaica, they played together initially between 1963 and 1965 but recorded many of their best known songs in the period they recorded for Duke Reid's 'Treasure Isle' label. This album is a brilliant sampler of some of the best sides the group cut for producer Duke Reid during the last days of Jamaican R&B and the early ska period. Featuring several players who would later people a number of Reid's rocksteady and early reggae studio bands -- namely tenor saxophonist Tommy McCook -- the material takes in such ska milestones as "Eastern Standard Time," "Don-De-Lion," and "Yard Broom." And besides some stellar shots by McCook, there are plenty of choice contributions from tenor saxophonist Roland Alphonso, pianist Jackie Mittoo, trombonist Don Drummond, and trumpeter Johnny "Dizzy" Moore.
The lines between Trinity (born Wade Brammer), Dillinger, Yabby You, and myriad other reggae figures began to blur with the rise of DJs and talk-over artists. Here's Trinity, at 22, riffing so that he'd not be forgotten. His voice sounds startlingly like Dillinger's, especially when he's talking gravelly and with exclamations, jumping around the reverb-soaked instrumental track in a way that's simultaneously meaningful as narrative and as rhythm. There are obvious shadings provided by U-Roy and Big Youth, but even as an early twenty something, Trinity could go from a near-shout talk-over to a sweet R&B-tinged vocal warble--sometimes over a threadbare bass and drums track--and make it all sound coherent and compelling.