The Wailing Souls, originally known as the Renegades, first consisted of Lloyd “Bread” McDonald, George “Buddy” Haye and Winston “Pipe” Matthews. The trio provided backing vocals for Ernest Ranglin before they broke up in 1968. McDonald and Matthews then teamed up with Oswald Downer and Norman Davis, recording “Gold Digger” for Lloyd “Matador” Daley. Their next move was to Coxsone over at Studio One where they recorded some of their greatest early work. Eventually as Pipe and the Pipers they recorded a couple classic tunes at Tuff Gong in the early 70’s and in effect became the first artists signed to Bob's fledgling label. In 1974 Downer and Davis left the group, and former Renegade George Haye returned for a short while but it was short-lived. Throughout the rest of the decade the line-up changed on nearly a weekly basis with vocalists including Joe Higgs and Garth Dennis of Black Uhuru fame joining the ranks for short stints. But that’s enough discussion of the many who have passed through the revolving door that has been the Wailing Souls; we’ll get to the music.
To be honest with you I can’t ascertain exactly who was recording with the group when the tracks we’re going to hear were recorded. All I know is that I’m beginning to sound like a broken record here, these tracks, all from the early 80’s were recorded for a certain producer whose first name begins with an H and last name begins with an L… still don’t know who I’m talking about? Check out many of the previous posts if you’re still unsure. I feel kind of bad about featuring so much Volcano/Junjo because it has always been my intention to provide a decent cross-section of all era of Jamaica music but I’ve really been listening and rediscovering a lot of music from the early 80’s as of late. Besides if my record collection is any indication I’d say it’s my favorite era.
Featured today are 4 real nice tracks from the Wailing Souls all backed by the incomparable Roots Radics… all but one direct from vinyl. The track “A Fool Will Fall” is from the “Firehouse Rock” CD that I also have on vinyl but I’m lazy and wanted to make things easy on myself, I don’t think anyone minds which format it came from anyway! Included in the zip is the Jah Guidance 12” “Baby Come Rock,” followed by the excellent “Kingdom Rise, Kingdom Fall” 12” released on Greensleeves in 1980. Third I’ve got “A Fool Will Fall” from the excellent “Firehouse Rock” CD – if you don’t own this album go get it immediately; essential reggae! Finally I’ve got a track called “Oh What A Lie” from the 1982 LP “Inchpinchers” which is also a pretty good album! Enjoy!
I hate to have to use the rereleased CD image because they junked the hell out of it by placing that special price proclamation in the corner! Unfortunately my wife took the digital camera to work today so I can't get a decent photo of the original cover! Oh well...