Tag Archives: Skatalites

Funky and fun from Jamaican Jazz Orchestra

avatars-000061799624-ir5f3y-t500x500Wouter Rosseel – guitarist in Lee Perry-influenced Belgian reggae band Pura Vida – has another project, a project with hardly any Lee Perry influences. The members of Jamaican Jazz Orchestra are instead worshipping The Skatalites and the early sounds of Jamaica led by Don Drummond, Ernest Ranglin, Tommy McCook and others.

And this ten piece band has recently dropped a self-titled six track EP free for download over at Soundcloud.

When listening to it my foot starts tapping and my head starts nodding reflexively. They have a tasteful mix of reggae and ska rhythms spiced with a jazzy brass section and a groove-oriented organ player.

It’s loose, funky and fun and well-worth checking out, even though I could have made it without the rapping on G13.

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A great relaunch from Studio One and Soul Jazz

Many artists, producers and labels in the world of reggae music aspire on being the founder of the genre. Who invented reggae and where it was invented could probably be a topic for near endless discussions.

One man who would certainly pop up in such a conversation is Clement “Coxsone” Dodd, producer and founder of Studio One, a business that covered almost every aspect of the music industry – soundsystem, pressing plant, auditioning, recording studio, publishing house and more.

Under his tutelage several singers and groups rose to international prominence and virtually every artist in Jamaica wanted to work for Coxsone in the 60’s and 70’s.

Among the artists that recorded at Studio One you’ll find some of the household names in reggae music. You name them and they’ve probably cut at least one track 13 Brentford Road in Kingston 5, where the studio was located until it closed down in 1979, when Coxsone got tired of the violence and moved to Brooklyn, New York.

Some of the most acclaimed artists that recorded at Studio One is featured on the compilation The Legendary Studio One Records: Original Classic Recordings 1963-80 out now on Soul Jazz Records. It has been three years since the latest Studio One issue from Soul Jazz. And it is more than welcome.

It contains a total of 18 tracks that covers ska, rocksteady, reggae, dub and dancehall and is something a sampler with well-known and lesser known artists and tunes.

Included are The Skatalites scorching Ball of Fire and Michigan & Smiley’s pulsating Rub a Dub Style in a brilliant extended version complete with sound effects.

Other highlights include Prince Jazzbo’s haunting Rock Fort Dub and guitar virtuoso Ernest Ranglin’s beautiful instrumental Ranglin Doodlin’.

This compilation is a great relaunch of a very fruitful collaboration and according to the press release there are more to come in the end of the year. Bring it on!

The Legendary Studio One Records is available on CD, 2xLP and digital download.

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