Thursday, July 26, 2007

The Distinctly Jamaican Sounds Mento Extravaganza 2007

Judging by the underwhelming response from the dub poetry post I think it's time we change gears here and perhaps lighten the mood a little. So here for your listening pleasure I have compiled 20 seemingly light- hearted mento songs for your summer listening pleasure. All songs are borrowed from various sources and because time is tight this week I'm not going to go all out and give you an in depth synopsis of each song - just the artist, title and from what CD it's borrowed from. So kick back, lose your shoes and troubles as we embark on a trip back in time to the "Land Where the Rum Comes From" circa 1955. For maximum listening pleasure I sincerely recommend mixing yourself a rum based libation, if you are so inclined, and getting into the true spirit of things. Enjoy your trip!

You'll notice a couple songs in the mix that are "modern" recordings of mento but they have been selected because they do keep with the feel of the vintage tracks and shouldn't be a distraction.

Reggaexx's Distinctly Jamaican Sounds Mento Extravaganza 2007

1. Healing In The Balmyard - Harold Richardson - Jamaica Before Ska
2. Miss Constance - Count Lasher & Charlie Binger's Six - Boogu Yagga Gal
3. Blu-Lu-Lup - Lord Fly - Jamaica Before Ska
4. Special Amber Calypso - Lord Power & His Calypsonians - Boogu Yagga Gal
5. Nebuchadnezzar - Laurel Aitken - The Pioneer Of Jamaican Music
6. Night Food - Chin's Calypso Quartet - Dip & Fall Back
7. Broom Weed - Stanley Beckford - Stanley Beckford Plays Mento
8. Big Big Sambo Gal/Mattie Rag - Dan Williams and His Orchestra & Lord Fly - Mento Madness
9. Guzoo Doctor - Alerth Bedasse & Chin's Calypso Sextet - Take Me To Jamaica
10. Talking Parrot - Charlie Binger & His Calypsonians - Boogu Yagga Gal
11. Take Her To Jamaica - Lord Myrie, Cecil Mitchel & James Convery - Calypso Jamaica
12. Jamaica - The Hiltonaires - Trojan Jamaica Box Set
13. Bitter Cassava Killed Joe Brown - The Jolly Boys - Sunshine N' Water
14. Come Down From America - Lord Composer - Lord Composer With The Calypso Champions
15. Green Guava - Lord Tickler - Take Me To Jamaica
16. Linstead Market - Louise "Miss Lou" Bennett - Jamaica Before Ska
17. Money Is King - Alerth Bedasse & Chin's Calypso Sextet - Chin's Calypso 2
18. Come We Go Down a Unity/Old Lady O/Linstead Market - Boysie Grant & Reynolds Calypso Clippers - Mento Madness
19. Nobody's Business - Lord Composer - Lord Composer With The Calypso Champions
20. Three Little Birds - Monty Alexander & The Rod Dennis Mento Band - Concrete Jungle: The Music of Bob Marley


I found this map of Jamaica, complete with highlighted lodging and accommodations, in a book I recently picked up called "Pleasure Island - The Book Of Jamaica" edited by Esther Chapman and published by the Arawak Press in 1955. Pleasure Island is basically a very concise travel book which tells the traveler a short abridged history of Jamaica and then goes on to recommend all the sites to see, things to buy, places to eat, etc. but from a long lost, bright-eyed 1955 perspective. It makes for some entertaining reading and I breezed right through it in a couple hours, while listening to mento and sipping on a Coruba and ginger beer. If you've got an interest in pre-independence Jamaican history, with a kitschy 1950's feel, I recommend digging this one up.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

A Dub Poetry Exploration

Christian Habekost, who wrote the book "Verbal Riddim: The Politics And Aesthetics Of Dub Poetry," described dub poetry as a distinctive form of "Black Power rhetoric, Old-Testament Rasta imagery, and ghetto talk, forged into word chains with furious rhymes and fired by exploding reggae rhythms." His succinct definition goes a long way in describing this sub-genre to those who are unfamiliar but to be honest, as we look back on dub poetry some 30 years since it first raised its powerful voice, one key component of the description should be amended.

For me, the "Black Power" reference really dismisses a lot of the varied topics explored in this art form and in fact does little but categorize dub poetry as being one dimensional. I know that the original "Black Power" movement emphasized racial pride as well as promoted the advancement of black values and black collective interests and I for one have no problem with that and applaud the movement and what it accomplished. But unfortunately for some the use of the term Black Power in 2007 tends to have a negative connotation. I believe that a large segment of the population, who doesn't share the African complexion, hears the expression and immediately begins thinking of violent racial separatists whose racist ideologies mirror that of the subhuman Ku Klux Klan. Now I don’t proclaim to be an authority or even an expert on the subject but the vast majority of what I’ve heard is definitely not expressing the modern-day perceived definition of "Black Power." To clarify Dub Poets tend to present messages that are essentially calls for black equality, expressions of black self-pride, appeals for black cultural and historical awareness and often times the need for defiance or revolt in response to racist laws or political policies that segregate, denigrate or persecute...essentially... Black Power. But to me dub poetry definitely relates to the old definition before it was clouded and bastardized. I personally have never heard or even perceived that any dub poet’s message was racist or separatist - for the most part Dub Poets are too intelligent to be categorized with those who subscribe to a racist and flawed thought pattern. As for amending Habekost's definition, I'd use a term such as Black Consciousness Rhetoric instead. But enough about that... we're here to talk music not taboo topics on race that in this day and age some might feel uncomfortable discussing.

A little of my background... I first heard dub poetry about 20 years ago when I was first trying the waters of reggae music and happened across the Island/Mango compilation LP called Reggae Greats – Linton Kwesi Johnson at a used record store in Baltimore. I of course was unaware of what I was in for when I plopped down my $3.00 and brought it home. Being a new reggae listener I was really only familiar with Bob Marley and Peter Tosh and any records I scored from any artists besides the ones I was already listening to were true adventures. I couldn’t wait to get home and give my new records a spin and so was the case with LKJ. I read the back of the sleeve which had a pretty decent write-up and needless to say my curiosity was piqued. LKJ said...
"I coined the phrase 'dub poetry' years ago in talking about reggae DJs because I was trying to argue in some article that what the DJs in Jamaica were actually doing is poetry, is improvised, spontaneous, oral poetry and I called it 'dub poetry'. But since then Oku Onoura and others have developed this idea of 'dub poetry' as a description of what he and Michael Smith and Muta and myself and other people do. But I think I'll be quite happy to just call it poetry."
As soon as I dropped the needle I was almost immediately blown away! The rhythms were rootsier and smoother than any of the music I already knew and LKJ’s laid back delivery, engaging story telling skills and vivid alliterations made this record an absolutely compelling piece of art! Initially I have to admit that I had a difficult time understanding some of the patois but nonetheless I listened to side A three times before I even bothered to give the B side a spin.

But that's enough of my reminiscing… let’s get to what you’re going to hear. I did this mix in a different style and I hope you enjoy the results.

First, we start with Linton Kwesi Johnson and his poem "Reggae Sounds" from his 1980 Island Records release Bass Culture. Now instead of just cramming the song in its entirety in the mix, I chopped it into sections and provided spoken stanzas from Johnson’s 1998 album LKJ A Cappella Live, available on LKJ Records. During the instrumental bridge in Johnson’s track you’ve got Mutabaruka providing the second poem., "Sit Dung Pon De Wall" from his 1983 album Check It on Alligator Records!

The third track is courtesy of Jean "Binta" Breeze and its taken from the 1983 Heartbeat various dub poet release Word Soun’ ‘Ave Power and her poem called "Aid Travel With A Bomb." Breeze was born in 1957 in Jamaica and while studying at the Jamaican School Of Drama alongside Michael Smith and Oku Onoura she began writing poetry. Eventually she started recording in the late 70’s early 80’s and is still actively writing today.

Oku Onoura, who is credited as the Father Of Jamaican Dub Poetry gives us the next piece. It's a short but powerful poem from his 1984 release called "Last Night" off the album Pressure Drop.

The late Michael Smith is next from his only album, the masterful Mi Cyann Believe It from 1982 and the poem/song called "It A Come." Again I use the instrumental version at the end of Smith's track for another Mutabaruka spoken piece called, "Prisoner" from his 1984 album Outcry.

Back we go to Linton Kwesi Johnson and the eulogistic poem to Blair Peach, a New Zealand born teacher who was killed by members of the London Metropolitan Police's Special Patrol Group on April 23, 1979 while he attended an anti-Nazi demonstration. This one is called "Reggae Fi Peach" also coming from the Bass Culture album and it ranks right up there as one of my all-time favorite reggae tracks ever. The poem is so defiant and rightfully outraged while the rhythm, driven by a fantastic horn riff, flows along in agreement. To me it is a textbook example of the powerful spoken word and hardcore roots reggae that makes dub poetry so compelling. I mixed this up with "Peach Dub" from the 1980 companion album LKJ In Dub and toward the end I throw in another Oku Onoura spoken word poem. This one is "We'll Keep On Struggling" from his CD called Dubbin' Away.

Up next is a poet named Glenville Bryan, who I can't find any background on, and a piece called "Blood Shout" from the Heartbeat Word Soun' 'Ave Power album.

Benjamin Zephaniah is next with the poem called "13 Dead" from his 1983 album Rasta which was originally released by a label called Workers Playtime. The drumming and sparse instrumentation definitely bring to mind the revolutionary and Black Nationalist sounds of the late 60's era group the Last Poets. Rasta is one of those albums that I've been dying to hear for years and thanks to the miracle of the modern Internet I was finally able to track it down in time for this mix. There are conflicting sources on whether Zephaniah was born in England on April 15, 1958 and spent part of his childhood in Jamaica or if he was born in Black River Jamaica and emigrated to England when he was a child - being that he's still around and active you'd think someone would be able to find out from him which is accurate. I would tend to go with the born in England theory considering his exact date of birth is known and in Jamaica in those days birth records tended to be a little sketchy especially if he was from a rural region and born at home, as was customary. Zephaniah first published his work in a book called Pen Rhythm in 1980 and went on to record Rasta in '83. An interesting note, in 2003 Zephaniah was offered the honor of Officer Of The Order Of British Empire which he declined by saying that it reminded him of generations of oppression and he rather impolitely responded by telling, "Mr. Blair and Mrs. Queen" to stick it! You've got to admire his uncompromising principles!

Next up is another LKJ accapella and original version "mash-up" if you will. This is called "Sonny's Lettah" from the LKJ A Cappella CD and the track from his 1979 Island/Mango album Forces Of Victory. Again we let Dennis Bovell provide the rhythm for Mutabaruka and his thoroughly compelling piece called "Dis Poem" from his 1986 Shanachie album The Mystery Unfolds.

Finally we let Mutabaruka have a track all his own, sorry Muta for taking so long, and its a good one called "Rememberance" from the Outcry album. Much has been written about Mutabaruka and if you want to read more you can check him out at his website by clicking here. On a personal note, I got the chance to see Mutabaruka perform in Baltimore about 100 years ago, I'm exaggerating a little it's easier then trying to narrow down the exact year, and he was the nicest guy. Before the show he was sitting outside the nightclub without his shirt or shoes, which I believe he never wears, and he talked with my friend Nick and I for a good 15 minutes. He is a true reggae legend and we were honored he would spend time with a couple of fans without being forced into it by an oppressive record label or a manager. Let's see a non-reggae artist like Bono do that!

Michael Smith is up next with his poem "Black And White" and it segues nicely into an Oku Onoura track called "Decolonization" from his Pressure Drop album which also has a Last Poets feel.

Oliver Smith, another relatively unknown dub poet from the Word Soun' 'Ave Power album is up next with his piece called "Sign Of The Times."

Benjamin Zephaniah is next in the mix with a surprisingly catchy track called "Dis Policeman Keeps Kicking Me To Death" from the Rasta album. I defy you to listen to this one and not find yourself bobbing along to Zephaniah's sing-songy delivery. I almost felt guilty because the subject matter is definitely not danceable.

Linton Kwesi Johnson gives us "Five Nights Of Bleeding (For Leroy Harris)" from the 1978 Virgin album originally credited to Poet And The Roots which is called Dread Beat An' Blood. Another powerful piece - the vivid lyrics and amazingly paced delivery make this another textbook example of dub poetry. I highly recommend seeking out the accapella version because it allows you to fully understand and appreciate the skill involved in crafting this poem.

Oku Onoura gives us another spoken piece. This one is called "Tears" and comes from the Rohit Records Dubbin' Away CD.

Still active poet Malachi Smith gives us "Victim" from the aforementioned Heartbeat album. I can kick myself for not researching this post further in advance because Malachi has recorded and released a couple CDs of current dub poetry in the last few years, which after a bit of digging online was able to find available for purchase. Oh well, maybe we'll revisit Malachi Smith in the future. Smith has an interesting background, the son of a preacher and a retired detective corporal for the Jamaica Constabulary Force, and now a dub poet!

Mutabaruka is next with another track and this one is "De System" from the Check It album. I love the breakdown in the middle of the track where they go into an impromptu version of Bob Marley's "Them Belly Full (But We Hungry)" it's probably as close as you'll ever get to hearing Muta singing. I also remember a live version, that I have somewhere, when the band breaks off into an all-out disco beat instead of the Marley tune which makes for an awesome transition once the one drop kicks back in. But I digress.

Michael Smith is next with his poem which is also the title track from his Mi Cyann Believe It album.

Oku Onoura follows that up with a piece called "Wat A Situashan" from the 1993 CD release of material recorded in 1982 and called I A Tell... Dubwise & Otherwise on the ROIR label. This is one of my favorite Oku tracks and his "weeping" delivery makes you feel his pain and desperation and in turn allows this one to stand out as another prime example of good dub poetry.

Tomlin Ellis, another dub poet who I can't find any background on, from the Heartbeat Word Soun' 'Ave Power LP gives an anti-drug message called "Drop It."

Benjamin Zephaniah follows Ellis with the next spoken word piece and it's called "I Love My Mudder" again from his Rasta album. This track serves two purposes for me; it shows that dub poetry is capable of exploring subjects not limited to "Black Power" and it serves as a nice transition into a poem about giving birth, obviously from a female perspective.

Lillian Allen give us the next song and it is called appropriately "Birth Poem" from her 1986 album Revolutionary Tea Party. Allen uses repetition to emphasize how hard birthing labor can be and it actually works pretty well by making the listener feel a mother's struggle and agonizing desperation when bringing a life into the world. You can read more about Lillian Allen here.

Sticking with the female perspective we've got another piece from Jean "Binta" Breeze and again taken from the Word Soun' 'Ave Power LP, this one is called "To Plant."

The last instrumentally backed track in the mix comes from Linton Kwesi Johnson and also makes a strong point in emphasising the versatility of this sub genre. This one is called "More Time" and comes from the 1999 album of the same name released on the LKJ label. This one is more a poem lamenting the fact that all people, no matter race, color or creed need more time to enjoy their lives outside of work. A great upbeat song with a positive aspiration, and Steve Gregory's smooth flute solos throughout, make this a nice tune to wrap up the mix.

The final spoke word piece is from Oku Onoura and is called "Defiance" and was swiped from his album Bus Out which was originally released in 1984 and re-released on CD in 2003. It's a good summation of this dub poetry exploration and after writing all this I'm spent.

A Dub Poetry Exploration

Friday, July 13, 2007

Father Reggaexx's Big Mix Of Jamaican Nursery Rhymes

I was on the way to work with my usual 45 minute commute with no one but the Ipod to keep me company. I think about 80% of my posts were devised behind the wheel usually with a potentially dangerous flourish of scribbling notes or brainstorming of titles that pop in my head, on any available scrap of paper floating around the front seat and all the while steering with my knees and keeping my eyes on the road of course. So yesterday in mid-commute with the Ipod doing its work on the shuffle mode up popped the Melodians’ “Little Nut Tree” followed immediately by Eek A Mouse’s “Georgie Porgy.” And I got to thinking… hey; there are a lot of Jamaican songs based on Nursery Rhymes. You hear people complaining about other drivers devoting too much of their attention to their cell phones? Anyone behind me would be complaining, “would you look at this asshole playing with his Ipod!” Well I found another one while doing the double knee Andretti and was content with what I thought was a basis for a great post.

This morning I did some more digging and sure enough… there was plenty for the mix that I’m presenting. I could have added a few more but I didn’t want to just grab 10 songs off Trojan’s Reggae For Kids and call it a day – I only used 3! You’ll see from the tracklisting that I put some serious effort into this!
The criteria was simple, the song had to include at least one line from the actual nursery rhyme it was covering or have a title that was dead-on with its childhood predecessor. Oddly enough I think all but two are devoid of true nursery rhyme stanza goodness. So here for you and your children’s (if you have any that is) listening pleasure is “Father Reggaexx’s Big Mix Of Jamaican Nursery Rhymes.” And you can be assured it is kid friend because I made the wise decision to avoid any risqué versions of “I Love Little Pussy,” or “Ride A Cock Horse” that may exist… and I’m pretty sure they probably do.

You get a nice sampling of a few varied eras of Jamaican music in the mix and I think you’ll enjoy it!

1. Hey Diddle Diddle – Kent Brown & Sir Dee’s Group

2. Old King Cole – Dennis Alcapone

3. Mi Have Fi Get You – Josey Wales

4. Come Into My Parlor – The Bleechers

5. Put Your Right Foot In – Admiral Bailey

6. Solomon Gundie – Eric Morris

7. Georgie Porgy – Eek A Mouse

8. Riddle I This – Scotty

9. Three Blind Mice – Leo Graham

10. Humpty Dumpty – Eric Morris

11. Little Boy Blue – Pat Kelly

12. Michael Row The Boat Ashore – Max Romeo

13. Eni Meeni Mini Mo – Tenor Saw

14. London Bridge Has Fallen – Ras Michael & The Sons Of Negus

15. Little Nut Tree – The Melodians

16. Simple Simon – Eric Morris

17. Jack Sprat – Yellowman & Fathead

18. Old McDonald Ska – The Granville Williams Orchestra

19. Curly Locks – Junior Byles

20. Farmers In The Den – The Bleechers

Of note – Man! With three of his tracks inside the mix, Eric Morris must have been a reggae Father Goose! I’d have my kids listening to him any day over most of that irritating, mind-numbing, parentally torturous crap they pass off as kid’s music today!

Speaking of that it’s also interesting to note, and if you’ll excuse me for going a bit off topic here, but when researching this post I came across an interesting news article that basically said that nursery rhymes are in danger of dying out because parents are singing pop songs to their children instead. A study suggested that 40% of parents with small children cannot recite a single rhyme all the way through. And even more disturbing was that 44% were singing pop songs and, get this, TV theme tunes instead. TV Theme tunes?! Now maybe I’m just old-school but you’re telling me that parents would rather have their children singing the theme to the Love Boat than a nursery rhyme?! Why don’t they force TV’s mindless sludge further down the throat of today’s youth?! And they wonder why kids in the United States are obese and want nothing more than to sit around the “idiot box” watching cartoons or playing video games while stuffing their faces with Twinkies or whatever junk is being spoon-fed to them and their impressionable minds in between episodes of Sponge Bob. For the love of God people teach your kids a friggin’ nursery rhyme, get them off the sofa, out of the air-conditioned house and let them discover what real fun they can find outdoors! I’ll step off my soapbox now, I’ve got to hone up on my nursery rhymin’ skills.

Father Reggaexx's Big Mix Of Jamaican Nursery Rhymes

Monday, July 09, 2007

The Godfather Daddy U Roy

The man U Roy, born Ewart Beckford in 1942, started his career spinning tunes as a DJ for the sound system called Doctor Dickies in 1961. In his early years Beckford was inspired and in turn emulated DJ Winston "Count" Machuki who had worked for both Coxsone Dodd and Prince Buster and by the time U Roy worked his way up to DJ'ing for King Tubby's Home Town Hi-Fi around 1967, he was well on his way to becoming the King Of DJs. The legend goes that while working with Tubby in the early stages of dub and the instrumental versions, that would become the mainstay of B-sides on Jamaican 45's for decades to come, Tubby thought it would spice things up a bit by adding DJ toasting in the gaps of the now vocally-stripped, popular rhythm tracks in which he was working. Tubby went on to record U Roy riding these tracks on acetate discs suitable for play on his sound system and back then whenever the needle would lock into those grooves the crowds would go berserk! U Roy went on to record for Lee Perry, Keith Hudson and Duke Reid in the early part of his career and amazingly it was riding the Duke's rocksteady productions from '66 and '67 that he would cause quite a stir on the Jamaican music charts. His songs "Wake The Town," "Rule The Nation" and "Wear You To The Ball" held the top three slots for 12 weeks during the early 1970's. Of course after this success, scores of other DJs made the leap from sound system to record and thanks to U Roy, Jamaican music would never be the same.

Of course U Roy went on to record lots more during the 70's with slews of other producers and even had time to start-up and operate his heavily influential Stur-Gav sound system where other DJs like Ranking Joe, Josey Wales and Charlie Chaplin first made a name for themselves. I could go on and on... but I won't, so before I spend the next four hours recapping U Roy's career until now, I'll just get to the music. Here is my tribute to the Godfather that I know you'll enjoy!

1. "Wake The Town" from the Virgin CD Version Of Wisdom
2. "No. 1 In The World" from the 1989 Greensleeves various artists LP Dubble Attack
3. "Runaway Girl" from the 1975 Virgin LP Dread In A Babylon
4. "Sound Of The Wise" from the 1992 Heartbeat CD called Lloyd Daley's Matador Productions 1968-1972 - Reggae Classics From The Originator
5. "Bury The Razor" from the 2001 I Sound CD The Lost Album: Right Time Rockers
6. "Come Fe Warn Them" from the 1987 Prince Jazzbo produced RAS Records LP Music Addict
7. "Train From The West" from the 2001 Blood & Fire various artists CD Microphone Attack
8. "The Hudson Affair" from the 2004 Trojan double CD set of Keith Hudson productions called appropriately The Hudson Affair - Keith Hudson & Friends
9. "Kingston 12 Shuffle" featuring Bob Marley & The Wailers from a 2003 Trax On Wax 10" Single - a great record ironically I found it by chance in a record store that specializes in punk rock.
10. "Control Tower" from the 1977 Rasta Ambassador LP released by Virgin
11. "Hard Feeling" from the 1994 Trojan various artists CD called U Roy & Friends - With A Flick Of My Musical Wrist
12. "Behold" from the 2004 Metro Music various artists CD set called The Story Of Treasure Isle
13. "Nana Banana" from the Alvin Ranglin GG Sampler LP from Heartbeat named Holy Ground
14. "Jah Son Of Africa" from the 1976 Virgin LP called Natty Rebel
15. "Everybody Bawling" from the Virgin CD Version Galore
16. "The Higher The Mountain" from 1988 Trojan LP Keep On Coming Through The Door
17. "Wet Dream (Version)" from the 2004 Jet Star 4 CD set The Bunny 'Striker' Lee Story
18. "Earthquake" from the 1998 Trojan Records CD set called The Complete UK Upsetters Single Collection Vol.3
19. "Full Time" again from the I Sound CD The Lost Album: Right Time Rockers
20. "Dreamland" from the 1999 Trojan Tribute To Bob Marley boxset


Monday, July 02, 2007

It's Time To Take Five

You've heard "Take Five." Even if your knowledge or appreciation of jazz is extremely limited and you're sure you haven't I'd almost be willing to bet it sounds familiar. If you hear the first track in this mix and it doesn't ring any bells you definitely need to get out more often! "Take Five" is one of those trademark jazz tunes that no matter where your musical interests lie you need to know this song... it's essential listening. Now remember this recommendation is coming from a pretty big Dave Brubeck fan so if you're a real jazz aficionado and strongly disagree don't bother writing to argue your point 'cause I ain't listenin'! :-)

Anyway, a little background, the song originally appeared on the Dave Brubeck Quartet's 1959 album of the same name and over the course of the last 48 years the actual facts about the tune have been muddied. Dave Brubeck's "trademark" song wasn't composed by Dave Brubeck, "Take Five" was actually written by saxophonist Paul Desmond. Now you're probably wondering, "has Distinctly Jamaican Sounds gone jazz?" My answer to that is not
completely Daddy-O. I'm going somewhere with this and it ain't to Squaresville cats and kittens. It hasn't been thoroughly documented but sometime in 1968 the late tenor sax man Val Bennett (born Lovall Bennett) recorded his interpretation of "Take Five" for producer Bunny Lee and gave it the name "The Russians Are Coming." Immediately it was turned around into a Derrick Morgan vehicle for professing Bunny Lee's superiority over Clement "Coxsone" Dodd in an entertaining musical "mini-drama" called "Great Musical Battle." "Take Five" then went on to become a fairly popular riddim used by some throughout the 70's and provided some surpisingly excellent backing for some serious roots reggae in that era.

We start off the mix with the Dave Brubeck classic from the 1959 album "Take Five." Second we have Val Bennett with the "Russians Are Coming" followed directly with Derrick Morgan's "Great Musical Battle" both from the CD boxset the Bunny "Striker" Lee Story from Jet Star. Next we have U-Brown with a track called "Blow Brother Joe" from his self-produced 1978 LP Weather Balloon on Gorgon Records.
Linval Thompson follows that up with his take on Take Five and the song called "12 Tribes Of Israel" from the excellent Blood & Fire release Ride On Dreadlocks. Next we have Dillinger from his 1977 Bunny Lee produced album called Superstar on the Weed Beat label and the song called "Jah Love." Barry Brown follows it up with another Bunny Lee product and a tune from 1978 called "Natty Roots Man" from the album The Best Of Barry Brown on the UK based Culture Press label. King Tubby provides the instrumental/dub interlude with "Take Five Dub" borrowed from the 2004 Jamaican Recordings CD Dub Mix Up. Back to the vocals is the killer himself Jacob Miller and a fine tune called "Standing Firm" from the 1995 release called Jacob Miller Meets The Fatman Riddim Section on Crocodisc. Next we've got a Winston Riley production from the sweet voiced Madoo called "Hands In The Air Girl" from the album Best Of Madoo on the Techniques label of course. Tony Tuff's track "Round The World" from the Sonic Sounds release 20 Super Hits follows up Madoo. Barrington Levy, with production courtesy of my man Junjo Lawes, wraps up the vocals with his 1979 song "Captivity" from the Burning Sounds LP Shine Eye Gal. Herman Marquis does his interpretation of Take Five with the track "Take Five" (imagine that) taken from the 2001 various artists CD called Beres Hammond And Friends on the Ejaness label. We end this mix with another Dave Brubeck version. This is a 1970 live version of "Take Five" from the 1970 Columbia album Dave Brubeck Trio & Gerry Mulligan - Live At The Berlin Philharmonie and as the album's title would indicate it features Mulligan on sax. You see after the initial success of "Take Five" Paul Desmond figured he could parlay its success into his own group... but that's a subject I'm saving for another blog.

Take Five And Dig It Dad!