Monday, 4 June 2018
Trojan Classic Reggae
First off, all these Trojan releases (of which there are many) are excellent in their sound quality. Nowhere is this more apparent on here, this wonderful double CD that shows just what a contribution the small island of Jamaica has made to music. From the early ska/rocksteady/bluebeat days of "007 (Shanty Town)", "Rudy, A Message To You", "Train To Skaville" and "Liquidator" these classics are remastered wonderfully - as good as I have ever heard them. Full and bassy, as reggae should be, but on many of the recordings, imperfections seem to have been ironed out.
The hits just go on and on, from Desmond Dekker's "Israelites" through Toots & The Maytals' "Monkey Man" and Symarip's "Skinhead Moonstomp" to Bob & Marcia's iconic, inspirational "Young, Gifted & Black" to the similarly so "54-46 Was My Number" from Toots & The Maytals.
Then there is the "UK pop reggae" of Ken Boothe's "Everything I Own" and John Holt's "Help Me Make It Through The Night" and the rootsy "Uptown Top Ranking" from Althea & Donna and the dubby "Ire Feelings" from Rupie Edwards. Reggae turns to Ragga by the end of this wonderful musical journey.
Thanks, Jamaica. Irie!