Yabby You’s dub album Beware has been unavailable for about 25 years, but has thanks to Pressure Sounds been restored and reissued complete with no less than six superb bonus cuts.
Beware – which collects version sides from various singles – was originally released in 1978 and reissued in 1981 and 1991. The new version is greatly expanded with two fascinating and previously unreleased dubplate cuts, one is the eerie Conquering Lion, which is even more dread in its dubplate disguise, and the other one God is Watching You. This version is haunting with deep harmonies and nyabinghi drumming.
Other stellar cuts include Tommy McCook’s beautiful Sensimena and the powerful Peace with its smattering percussion, relentless bass line and bright saxophone.
King Tubby and Prince Jammy handled mixing duties and as expected it’s clever and innovative spotlighting the bass and drums, yet highlighting other prominent instruments, such as horns and keys.
A key dub album that still sounds powerful.
In 2008 U.S. label Shanachie released a four disc Augustus Pablo box set titled Mystic World of Augustus Pablo: The Rockers Story Box Set. It was a stunning set including both classics and insanely rare material.
About a month ago the same label released a similar box set, but this one focused on another cornerstone of roots reggae music – Yabby You, a producer and singer that is the sheer essence of spiritual and devoted roots reggae from the 70s.
Dread Prophecy: The Strange and Wonderful Story of Yabby You collects a hefty 56 cuts spread across three discs and comes with a booklet that’s almost equal to an ordinary book. It tells the fascinating and touching story that is Yabby You, but it also give details on almost each track.
This collection is spectacular as it collects classics like Conquering Lion, Jah Vengeance, Run Come Rally and Deliver Me From My Enemies along with ridiculously rare singles, dubplates and previously unreleased material from both Yabby You and protégés like Michael Prophet and Wayne Wade. Apparently 30 tracks are new to CD and ten are previously unreleased.
This collection has been hugely anticipated for a long time. And even though there have been a number of extremely strong Yabby You compilations in recent years – two on Pressure Sounds and one on Blood & Fire – this one might just outshine all three.
So don’t even think for a second that you can sleep on this epic collection of mystic, powerful and anti-establishment music where Yabby You and his friends chant down Babylon again and again and again.
Another long lost gem has been made available. Unification: From Channel One to King Tubby’s is the title of a set by Willie Williams produced together with legendary producer Yabby You, who is responsible of some of the most haunting roots reggae ever released.
Willie Williams is probably best known for his Armigideon Time, produced by Clement “Coxsone” Dodd in the early 80s. Apart from that tune Willie Williams is usually under the radar for most listeners, even though he has put several strong albums, including his debut set Messenger Man.
Unification is a hard and relentless set and contains several songs that has already been available but spread out on several different compilations over the years. And according to a recent interview with Willie Williams several of these releases are pirated, so it’s nice to have a proper album with timeless roots reggae.
The set was recorded in 1979; a chaotic time in Jamaica, when a general election was just around the corner. And this is reflected in the music – provided by an all-star cast led by Sly & Robbie of The Revolutionaries – and the thoughtful lyrics. It’s consciousness from start to finish with songs like Free Dem, Righteousness, Unification and Rally.
Willie Williams has a laid-back singing style similar to Don Carlos, and sometimes it’s hard to separate them. It’s almost half-spoken at times and very meditative, which clashes with the rock-hard bass lines.
The sound quality is well-above par compared to other releases of long forgotten albums, and it’s not every year you get to hear a previously unreleased Yabby You production, so head over to your nearest retailer and give it a listen. Satisfaction (most likely) guaranteed.
I was very excited when I realized that Pressure Sounds was about to drop a new Yabby You album, a set following his Deeper Roots released in 2012.
Deeper Roots Part 2 takes up the mantle of exploring the late Yabby You’s extensive back catalogue and is packed with previously unreleased mixes of one of Jamaica’s most unique producers.
He started his musical career in the early 1970s just as a new wave of Jamaican artists and producers were starting to dominate the local music scene. And from the very beginning his music stood outside of the mainstream of reggae music.
This 16 track compilation – with audio quality sometimes a bit below par since some tracks were sourced from vinyl – focuses on the more instrumental and dub infused productions of Yabby You and offers several exclusive mixes. Some of the tracks were given directly to the label by Yabby You, while others have come from exclusive dubplates.
Sipping I & I Chalice comes in two versions and was only ever previously released on 7”. Thirty pieces of Silver has been deconstructed and reduced to a thundering and powerful instrumental. Psalm 16 is another highlight with its ruthless percussion and overall dread mood.
And that mood actually goes for the full album. It has that eerie sound that Yabby You is probably best known for. If that sound is something you like, you should definitely check this set. More than 50 minutes worth of music – most of it exclusive to Pressure Sounds – and sleevenotes by label boss Pete Holdsworth and focus on his own personal experiences of dealing with Yabby You from the mid 90s.
A worthy follow-up and definitely well in line with the first volume.
Deeper Roots: Dub Plates And Rarities 1976 – 1979 is a collection of tracks by the late producer and singer Yabby You and is the latest release on Pressure Sounds. As implied by the title, the 19 track album collects extremely rare singles, previously unknown mixes and dub plates only heard by loyal sound system followers.
Many of Yabby You’s greatest achievements were originally pressed in tiny numbers and reissue giants Blood & Fire’s compilation Jesus Dread was more than welcome when it was put out 15 years ago.
Now the baton is handed over to Pressure Sounds and they dig deeper in his vaults of highly spiritual and eerie archives and have found tracks that celebrate his unique partnership with legendary mixing engineer King Tubby alongside obscurities such as Lazy Mood, an organ cut of the classic Conquering Lion, Barrington Spence’s Don’t Touch I Dread, Smith & The Prophets’ Valley of Joeasaphat and Don D Junior’s trombone led instrumental Milk Lane Rock.
Yabby You was a sufferer growing up in poverty and this is reflected in much of his music. He’s roots reggae in its purest sense and this testament of his golden period reflects the core and the peak of profound Jamaican rasta music.
Deeper Roots is available on vinyl, CD and digital download.
Flera källor, bland annat United Reggae och Reggae-Vibes, rapporterar att sångaren och producenten Vivian ”Yabby You” Jackon avlidit i sviterna av en stroke. Han dog i tisdags och blev 63 år gammal.
Yabby You var under 70-talet en av reggaens bästa producenter och ligger bakom kända riddims som Beware, Conquering Lion och Jah Venegance. Hans produktioner var ofta mörka med tydliga domedagsteman.
Han började karriären på 60-talet med bandet Sons of Negus. Under följande decennier arbetade han huvudsakligen på egen hand, både som sångare och producent.
Samlingen Jesus Dread på skivbolaget Blood & Fire är en av de bästa reggaesamlingarna som getts ut. Har du inte den i skivsamlingen är det nu ett utmärkt tillfälle att fylla på med klassiska låtar som Run Come Rally, Carnal Mind och Love Thy Neighbour.
BMC är en holländare som regelbundet mixar reggae. Han lägger ut sina mixar här. Jag är en stor fan av det han gör, mycket tack vare att han har bra smak vad gäller både modern och gammal roots reggae.
Efter drygt två månaders frånvaro är han tillbaka med en ny grym mix. Den här gången har han gått lös på legendariske deejayn Dillinger.
Den nya mixen blandar Dillingers deejayande med många kända sångares versioner, bland andra skönsjungande Pat Kelly, Dennis Brown och Sugar Minott. Musiken är producerad av kändisar som Yabby You, Bunny Lee, Clement Dodd och Lee Perry. Inga dåliga namn med andra ord.
Och ja, det är Dillinger som gjort 70-talshiten Cocaine in my brain. Men nej, den är inte med i den här mixen. Det är däremot mindre kända klassiker som Kung fu fighting (nix, har inget att göra med Carl Douglas discohit med samma namn), Dread called Fred och Natty Bsc.
Följ mitt goda råd och ladda ner den nya mixen. Har du inte de andra mixarna föreslår jag att du tankar ner dem också.