Sunday, May 15, 2016

Day 197 of 365 Day Jamaican Music Challenge - Lyn Taitt & The Jets - Nice Time

Born Nerlynn Taitt in San Fernando Trinidad in 1934, Lyn Taitt got started playing in steel drum bands before picking up the guitar at age 14.  In 1962, Taitt formed his own band and came to Jamaica to join-in with the independence celebrations, afterward he decided to stay in Jamaica.  He worked with a handful of groups throughout the ska era and in 1966 he formed The Jets along with Hux Brown, Headley Bennett, Hopeton Lewis, Gladstone Anderson and Winston Wright, the group in which his name would become synonymous.  It was during the rocksteady age that Lyn Taitt & The Jets became some of the busiest musicians in Jamaica, sometime performing up to five sessions a day for producers like Coxsone Dodd, Duke Reid, Sonia Pottinger, Joe Gibbs and Bunny Lee.  It's interesting to note that fans of rocksteady have pondered which song was actually the first of the new genre... some say it was Hopeton Lewis' "Take It Easy," Alton Ellis' "Girl I've Got A Date" or Derrick Morgan's "Tougher Than Tough" but regardless of which track holds the distinction one thing is certain; Lyn Taitt played guitar on all three of them!  Today's track "Nice Time," an instrumental version of the Bob Marley classic, originally came as a 7" on the Merritone label in 1967 and it serves as a nice showcase of Taitt's unconventional though highly in-demand rhythmic guitar playing that made rocksteady sound so damn good.

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