Ranking Joe (born Joseph Jackson, 1959) got into the music business as a youth originally calling himself DJ Jolly. At 15 he went to Studio One where he received a name change to Little Joe and cut "Gun Court," his first hit for Coxsone. As with most DJs of the day he spent a considerable amount of time bouncing from one studio and producer to another cutting tracks for anyone who wanted him. In the mid 70's he hooked up with U-Roy's King Stur Gav Hi Fi and it was there he developed his trademark tongue twisting delivery. It's beginning to sound like a broken record with me but here goes... Ranking Joe went on to further success with Junjo Lawes in the early 80's with the LP "Saturday Night Jamboree" released internationally on Greensleeves.
I've got a decent amount of Ranking Joe's better known music but when I decided to do this post I really wanted to share something the majority of listeners might not have heard. I came across these two singles "They Don't Know" and "Sing Along" on the back of the bottom shelf and at realized I had forgotten all about them and how nice they are... then I knew that they would work perfectly.
When I came across these records about 10 years ago in Ernie B's snail mail listing of records I hesitated buying them. Sure the price was cheap but I didn't, and still don't for that matter, know anything about the singers Carl Dryden or Hubert Lee but I knew with a DJ like Ranking Joe these had to be some hidden treasures. When they arrived amongst a stack of other more expensive vinyl they actually turned out to be some of the best records I bought that month. So for your listening pleasure I present these 12" singles both on the Waistline label circa mid-80's featuring the DJ talent of Ranking Joe. Oddly enough Carl Dryden who sings on "They Don't Know" is also the producer of both singles... it's too bad that I can't find out anything else about him.