Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Day 228 of 365 Day Jamaican Music Challenge - The Gladiators - Looks Is Deceiving

Albert Griffiths founded The Gladiators as a vocal group in 1966 with childhood friends David Webber and Errol Grandison.  Supposedly the band's name was suggested by a fellow passenger on a bus when they were on their way to their first recording sessions.  Two years later they scored their first hit with "Hello Carol," which was recorded at Studio One.  Soon after illness caused Webber to leave the band to be replaced by Clinton Fearon and Grandison too went his separate ways in 1972 being changed-out for Dallimore Sutherland.  Like the vast majority of reggae artists during the 70s the band cut records for a wide variety of producers and labels before releasing Trenchtown Mix Up for Virgin Records, a reworking of a heaping handful of previously released singles.  And that brings us to today's tune, the 227th in the 365 Day Challenge, "Looks Is Deceiving" from the aforementioned album.  What is interesting about the Gladiators and what separates them from a lot of groups in the roots era was the fact that they played their own instruments, whereas a lot of the music at the time was driven by a vocal group backed by a studio band.  Virgin suggested to the group in 1980 for their album Gladiators to leave the musicianship to someone else and it was a huge flop which resulted in their recording contract with the company being terminated.  But the Gladiators picked up their instruments and continued on, cutting as many as 18 albums in the decades that followed.  But let's get to the song!

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