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Tetrack: Never Too Late to Get Started

Tetrack: Never Too Late to Get Started

Classic reggae album sees reissue, featuring early work of Carlton Hines

Forty years have provided more than enough perspective to confirm the name Augustus Pablo as a standard bearer in the world of dub reggae. With a catalog of over 40 albums and 200 singles, Pablo rates among the great artist-producers (musicians who ran their own recording sessions versus being strictly financiers or executives). Despite his stature, Pablo was not a prolific producer of full-length vocal LPs, so his handful of efforts in that format are significant. His Hugh Mundell album Africa Must Be Free By 1983 has rightly achieved iconic status among reggae LPs. Tetrack’s lesser-known Let’s Get Started, recorded at the same time with many of the same musicians, matches Africa Must Be Free By 1983 artistically and arguably surpasses Mundell’s album in terms of the songwriting. This is due largely to the contributions of Carlton Hines, whose later writing credits would include Gregory Isaacs’ “Rumours.” Story Continues After The Jump…
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HEAR THIS: Willi Williams ft. U-Roy “Miss Cutie Cutie”

HEAR THIS: Willi Williams ft. U-Roy "Miss Cutie Cutie"

Foundation Artists In Action

Singer-songwriter Willi Williams’ 1979 hit “Armagideon Time” is forever enshrined in the reggae canon. Perhaps the most famous song on Studio One’s immortal Real Rock rhythm, Williams’ original was covered by seminal UK punk band The Clash that same year. Now the foundation singer has teamed up with the godfather of Jamaican deejays, U-Roy, and the Studio One house band the Soul Vendors for a new single “Ms. Cutie Cutie,” released through Williams’ own Drum Street label. This contemporary lovers rock track is a combination version of Williams’ “Natural Beauty,” both of which are available from all major digital distribution services and will be included on a full length release later this year, all backed by the Vendors. “My first recording was ‘Calling’ at Studio One in the late 1960s, and the Soul Vendors were Mr. Dodd’s house band at the time, working with every major act and helping create the Jamaican song book,” Williams explained. “The Vendors played on tracks from my Studio One album Armagideon Time, but this was the first time since then that we got in the studio and really worked together. I’ve been friends with U-Roy since the early 70s but we’ve never recorded together.” Audio After The Jump… Read more »

“Forgive Them Lord” Did Led Zeppelin T’ief The Hook For Their Reggae Hit “D’Yer Mak’er”?

"Forgive Them Lord" Did Led Zeppelin T'ief The Hook For Their Reggae Hit "D'Yer Mak'er"?

B.B. Seaton’s Tune Hit UK Dancehalls in 1971; Led Zep’s Tune Hit The Worldwide Charts In ’73

A friend of mine recently slapped me in the Facebook with an article about Led Zeppelin being the “Greatest Song Thieves In Rock History.” Ouch! It’s no secret that in addition to being a reggae lunatic, I’m a big-time Zeppelin appreciando. I’ve spent enough time listening to Led Zep live to be able to identify concert dates and venues blindfolded. Don’t test me. I’ve also listened to enough music and read enough about the band to know of their tendency to, ahem, adapt the work of others. Judge For Yourself After The Jump… Read more »

Johnny Osbourne “We Need Love” Live

Reggae Legend Rocks Out In Harlem Backed By The Full Watts Band
Photograph by Paul Holgerson

Ten-thirty p.m., Saturday, May 19, in Harlem. I’m sitting at a table in Ginny’s Supper Club below the Red Rooster, 125th and Lenox. Across this art deco revival Harlem nightclub, the funky rounded edges of the window to the deejay booth frames esteemed reggae producer Clive Chin and his operator Fidel ‘Twice’ Luna. My friend Sam leans to me and says, “Can you believe we’re sitting in a place like this, listening to music like this?” Ginny’s stands in obvious contrast to the Brooklyn basements and warehouses and lofts with bare walls and bare lightbulbs where we usually have to stay up until 3 a.m. to hear reggae from the vinyl deep. Twice drops the needle into a Clive Chin-produced cover of “Mission Impossible,” the right track played at the right time. The pot is bubbling… Read more »