Little John (born John McMorris, 1970) first recorded “51 Storm” at the age of nine with Captain Sinbad for the Youth In Progress label and from that point on he was seldom off the charts. Many claimed that he was the first true dancehall singer because like the best DJs he could ride any rhythm. By the time he turned 17 he had become a superstar.
Originally Little John started singing with the Romantic Hi Fi, and then went on to Killamanjaro, Gemini and the mighty Volcano Hi Power where he honed his skills by performing constantly. During this period he was also recording for any producer in Jamaica who was willing to put his voice to tape; In other words, I pity anyone who wants to undertake putting together Little John’s complete discography.
I have compiled 5 Little John singles for your listening pleasure… all but one comes directly from vinyl. As you’ve probably learned to expect from me the majority included were Junjo Lawes productions and they are top notch… at least I think so. The first track is “United We Stand, Divide We Fall” circa 1983 produced by Junjo on the Jah Guidance label and also includes a smooth Roots Radics version towards the end. The second track is “Little Girl” which was produced by Toyan, recorded at Channel One, backed again by the Roots Radics, mixed at King Tubby’s and released internationally on the Greensleeves label (wow that was a hell of a lot of info off one 12” label!) The third single is an absolutely killer song with Little John teaming up with Al Campbell. The song is called “Mash It Already” released on Junjo’s Volcano label and I absolutely love the Radics’ dub mix toward the end of the disk, it’s so good I think you’ll be able to ignore the record hiss. Fourth we have a track called “Spin You Roll” recorded at Channel One and released on a pretty decent CD called “Grapevine/Dynamite Records Vault Classics Vol. 2”. The last track I’m sharing today is probably one of my all-time favorite DJ/Singer combination records, it’s called “Dance And Studio” and pares Little John with DJ Josey Wales and was released on George Phang’s Powerhouse label. The two just work so well together on this record and the Little John lyrical variation on “The First Cut Is The Deepest” just flows beautifully. I love this song!! To be honest… I love all these songs! Maybe I need to find and buy some more Little John! Enjoy!