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Re: [thewire] Lee Perry - a Jamaican Holger Czukay?

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  • Kristopher S. Handley
    In a recent SIGNAL TO NOISE, DJ Spooky That Ubiquitous Kid was quoted as saying, Iannis Xenakis is the Lee Scratch Perry of classical music, something to
    Message 1 of 30 , Apr 2, 2001
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      In a recent SIGNAL TO NOISE, DJ Spooky That Ubiquitous Kid was quoted as
      saying, "Iannis Xenakis is the Lee 'Scratch' Perry of classical music,"
      something to that effect. I wonder if the obverse (?) is true: is the
      Upsetter the Xenakis of Jamaican music? Does this make Shaggy the John
      Williams of Jamaican music?

      ----s, needing caffeine, badly

      P.S. To have said something useful in this post: could anyone comment on
      releases by the label Bad Vugum? Are any essential listening? I've heard
      some good things about Circle, but nothing else. Looks enigmatic.

      NP: P16.D4 - ACRID ACME OF P16.D4 (Selektion)
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    • R. Lim
      ... I wonder what he meant? ... The best things on Bad Vugum early on were the first few Liiminarina 7 es (pre-dating their full-length on Drag City) and
      Message 2 of 30 , Apr 2, 2001
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        On Mon, 2 Apr 2001, Kristopher S. Handley wrote:

        > In a recent SIGNAL TO NOISE, DJ Spooky That Ubiquitous Kid was quoted as
        > saying, "Iannis Xenakis is the Lee 'Scratch' Perry of classical music,"
        > something to that effect. I wonder if the obverse (?) is true: is the

        I wonder what he meant?

        > P.S. To have said something useful in this post: could anyone comment on
        > releases by the label Bad Vugum? Are any essential listening? I've heard
        > some good things about Circle, but nothing else. Looks enigmatic.

        The best things on Bad Vugum early on were the first few Liiminarina 7"es
        (pre-dating their full-length on Drag City) and Radiopuhelimet (who had
        some sort of comp on Alternative Tentacles in the early 90s). I believe
        the latter moved to another label and I can't really remember specifics of
        releases, etc. In fact, if anybody has a copy of KO they want to trade,
        I'm still looking for one.

        Other than that, there were a lot of seemingly weird-for-weird's sake
        records. The first Keuhkot single was kind of cool, though. I never
        really liked Circle. Liiminarina were often compared to Half Japanese, by
        the way.

        -rob
      • Robert Traxler
        ... hrm...i had heard great things about Lee Perry and i had expected him to be good...but then my friend got that Arkology comp and we all listened to it and
        Message 3 of 30 , Apr 2, 2001
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          >From: "Coral Rumsey" <coral@...>
          >As someone looking to find out more about Scratch (knowing him primarily by
          >reputation) can anyone tell me if the 'Arkology' triple-discer compilation
          >is a good 'un?

          hrm...i had heard great things about Lee Perry and i had expected him to be
          good...but then my friend got that Arkology comp and we all listened to it
          and agreed that it, in fact, sucks...but a lot of ppl think he's great and
          innovative...which i don't get in the slightest...and i like a good bit of
          reggae/dub...i was terribly disapponted and personally don't think he comes
          close to living up to his hype...but you might disagree...that box is what
          the ppl who like Lee Perry tend to say his good stuff is...which i'm sure
          you prob'ly have already heard...
          -robert
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        • Jess Harvell
          ... I would disagree heartily that Arkology and Scratch suck... Make Up Your Mind by the Heptones and its version Why Must I? on disc three are two of my
          Message 4 of 30 , Apr 2, 2001
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            >hrm...i had heard great things about Lee Perry and i had expected him to be
            >good...but then my friend got that Arkology comp and we all listened to it
            >and agreed that it, in fact, sucks...

            I would disagree heartily that Arkology and Scratch suck..."Make Up Your
            Mind" by the Heptones and its version "Why Must I?" on disc three are two of
            my favorite slices of roots/dub...I will agree, however, that anyone who's
            been hyped as much as Perry has over the last decade or so is bound to fall
            somewhat short...

            Scratch can be exceedingly spotty, even at his Black Ark peak, and has left
            a trail of work for the last twenty or so years that ranges from mediocre to
            downright appalling...his legacy is far from the perfection of, say, King
            Tubby, who was producing work of quality, if not always startling
            innovation, until the day he died...

            I suspect that Simon Reynolds hit it on the head in his recent thinkpiece on
            the roots/dub continuum: that Perry's larger than life personality and
            eccentricities (which often spill into his work...the mooing cows, for
            example) have made him a star for everyone from dour post-rockers to Grand
            Royal-fetishizing college b-boys...the word games, bizarre dress, personal
            contradictions...the've made him a celebrity even among those who profess to
            loathe celebrity...given a face to the otherwise self-effacing world of the
            Jamaican studio system...

            There are moments of Scratch, however brief, which justify every accolade
            ever heaped upon him...dub's moment as hipster music of choice has passed
            though (like krautrock and tropicalia after it) and I think he'll assume his
            place in the pantheon, a little larger and a little less deserving, than his
            more modest peers...


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          • Jason Witherspoon
            ... The Congas, _Heart of the Congas_. Possibly the finest jewel to come from the Black Ark. -- Jason Witherspoon ICQ #62837760
            Message 5 of 30 , Apr 2, 2001
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              At 8:45 PM -0400 4/2/01, Jess Harvell wrote:
              >There are moments of Scratch, however brief, which justify every accolade
              >ever heaped upon him...dub's moment as hipster music of choice has passed
              >though (like krautrock and tropicalia after it) and I think he'll assume his
              >place in the pantheon, a little larger and a little less deserving, than his
              >more modest peers...

              The Congas, _Heart of the Congas_. Possibly the finest jewel to come
              from the Black Ark.

              --


              Jason Witherspoon
              ICQ #62837760

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            • Rob Thornton
              ... don t have much of the Upsetter s oeuvre, but _Heart of the Congos_ is a mighty work indeed and well worth yr money. an ace Blood & Fire reissue! robt
              Message 6 of 30 , Apr 2, 2001
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                On Mon, 2 Apr 2001, Jason Witherspoon wrote:

                > At 8:45 PM -0400 4/2/01, Jess Harvell wrote:
                > >There are moments of Scratch, however brief, which justify every accolade
                > >ever heaped upon him...dub's moment as hipster music of choice has passed
                > >though (like krautrock and tropicalia after it) and I think he'll assume his
                > >place in the pantheon, a little larger and a little less deserving, than his
                > >more modest peers...
                >
                > The Congas, _Heart of the Congas_. Possibly the finest jewel to come
                > from the Black Ark.

                don't have much of the Upsetter's oeuvre, but _Heart of the Congos_ is a
                mighty work indeed and well worth yr money. an ace Blood & Fire reissue!

                robt
              • Rob Thornton
                ... Just in case, folks, we re definitely talking about the Congos. The Congas are a late 70s Perry side project with Mongo Santamaria! (belated April Fools,
                Message 7 of 30 , Apr 2, 2001
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                  On Mon, 2 Apr 2001, Rob Thornton wrote:

                  > On Mon, 2 Apr 2001, Jason Witherspoon wrote:
                  >
                  > > At 8:45 PM -0400 4/2/01, Jess Harvell wrote:
                  > > >There are moments of Scratch, however brief, which justify every accolade
                  > > >ever heaped upon him...dub's moment as hipster music of choice has passed
                  > > >though (like krautrock and tropicalia after it) and I think he'll assume his
                  > > >place in the pantheon, a little larger and a little less deserving, than his
                  > > >more modest peers...
                  > >
                  > > The Congas, _Heart of the Congas_. Possibly the finest jewel to come
                  > > from the Black Ark.
                  >
                  > don't have much of the Upsetter's oeuvre, but _Heart of the Congos_ is a
                  > mighty work indeed and well worth yr money. an ace Blood & Fire reissue!
                  >

                  Just in case, folks, we're definitely talking about the Congos. The Congas
                  are a late '70s Perry side project with Mongo Santamaria! (belated April
                  Fools, ok?)

                  robt
                • Keith McColl
                  also i dig secret laboratory from 1990 - his finest electronic reggae journey -= plus ace sleeve . its like william orbit producin lee perry - sounds shit in
                  Message 8 of 30 , Apr 3, 2001
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                    also i dig 'secret laboratory' from 1990 - his finest electronic reggae
                    journey -= plus ace sleeve . its like william orbit producin lee perry -
                    sounds shit in theory but many a post mondays blissful sunny 1990 daytime
                    spent trippin checkin the perryoid

                    ***sleep trickled down around me,and the happy tune dissolved away into my
                    dreams ***
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                    > -----Original Message-----
                    > From: Gary Atkins [SMTP:gatki@...]
                    > Sent: Monday, April 02, 2001 9:34 PM
                    > To: thewire@yahoogroups.com
                    > Subject: Re: [thewire] Lee Perry - a Jamaican Holger Czukay?
                    >
                    > Funny you mention Mr. Perry today, feeling cheerful and Springy today, I
                    > drove in to town to the sounds of "Super Ape".
                    >
                    > The Arkology comp. is a great 'un...
                    >
                    > the only problem I have with it is that the "versions" often immediately
                    > follow the actual songs, and not always being in the mood to hear three
                    > consecutive arrangements of the same track in a row--I often use the
                    > random
                    > play.
                    >
                    > But for overall content, recording quality, and packaging--it's a gem.
                    >
                    > Gary
                    >
                    >
                    > >From: "Coral Rumsey" <coral@...>
                    > >Reply-To: thewire@yahoogroups.com
                    > >To: <thewire@yahoogroups.com>
                    > >Subject: [thewire] Lee Perry - a Jamaican Holger Czukay?
                    > >Date: Mon, 2 Apr 2001 20:48:29 +0100
                    > >
                    > >As someone looking to find out more about Scratch (knowing him primarily
                    > by
                    > >reputation) can anyone tell me if the 'Arkology' triple-discer
                    > compilation
                    > >is a good 'un?
                    > >
                    > >ta
                    > >
                    > >Simon Fay
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >UNSUBSCRIBE = mailto:thewire-unsubscribe@onelist.com
                    > >
                    > >TheWire List Info Page: http://www.msu.edu/user/forddavi/wirelist.html
                    > >
                    > >Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                    > >
                    > >
                    >
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                    >
                  • Jason Witherspoon
                    ... Whoops! (Why I always got B- s on my Spanish homework-- as , os , what s the diff??) -- Jason Witherspoon ICQ #62837760
                    Message 9 of 30 , Apr 3, 2001
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                      At 8:36 PM -0700 4/2/01, Rob Thornton wrote:
                      >Just in case, folks, we're definitely talking about the Congos. The Congas
                      >are a late '70s Perry side project with Mongo Santamaria! (belated April
                      >Fools, ok?)
                      >
                      >robt

                      Whoops! (Why I always got B-'s on my Spanish homework-- "as", "os",
                      what's the diff??)

                      --


                      Jason Witherspoon
                      ICQ #62837760

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                    • Jan Miloszewski
                      Perry s prolific output as artist and producer over a 35 year period is very patchy indeed - but his best stuff certainly justifies the hype and his influence
                      Message 10 of 30 , Apr 3, 2001
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                        Perry's prolific output as artist and producer over a 35 year period is very
                        patchy indeed - but his best stuff certainly justifies the hype and his
                        influence on other artists is incalculable. he was at his peak in the mid to
                        late 70's though there's plenty of good records before then, but I'd be very
                        wary of anything from the 80's onwards. "Arkology" has some great tracks on
                        it but suffers from containing too much filler material. if you want to hear
                        some more - out of the millions of albums available you could do a lot worse
                        than these....

                        Super ape
                        (classic mainly instrumental/dub album from the mid 70's)
                        Return of the super ape
                        (excellent album from 1978, also reissued as "The original super ape" with
                        extra tracks)
                        The Congos - Heart of the Congos
                        (his best album as a producer, superbly reissued/repackaged by Blood & Fire)
                        Revolution dub
                        (there's a huge number of mostly very average Lee Perry dub albums on the
                        market but this is a good one and is available at budget price on various
                        labels)
                        Voodooism
                        (good compilation album on Pressure Sounds)

                        rgs

                        jklm
                        co sie polepszy to sie popiepszy


                        ----- Original Message -----
                        From: Gary Atkins <gatki@...>
                        To: <thewire@yahoogroups.com>
                        Sent: Monday, April 02, 2001 9:33 PM
                        Subject: Re: [thewire] Lee Perry - a Jamaican Holger Czukay?


                        > Funny you mention Mr. Perry today, feeling cheerful and Springy today, I
                        > drove in to town to the sounds of "Super Ape".
                        >
                        > The Arkology comp. is a great 'un...
                        >
                        > the only problem I have with it is that the "versions" often immediately
                        > follow the actual songs, and not always being in the mood to hear three
                        > consecutive arrangements of the same track in a row--I often use the
                        random
                        > play.
                        >
                        > But for overall content, recording quality, and packaging--it's a gem.
                        >
                        > Gary
                        >
                        >
                        > >From: "Coral Rumsey" <coral@...>
                        > >Reply-To: thewire@yahoogroups.com
                        > >To: <thewire@yahoogroups.com>
                        > >Subject: [thewire] Lee Perry - a Jamaican Holger Czukay?
                        > >Date: Mon, 2 Apr 2001 20:48:29 +0100
                        > >
                        > >As someone looking to find out more about Scratch (knowing him primarily
                        by
                        > >reputation) can anyone tell me if the 'Arkology' triple-discer
                        compilation
                        > >is a good 'un?
                        > >
                        > >ta
                        > >
                        > >Simon Fay
                      • R. Lim
                        ... Agreed, though his more song-focused production work stands up pretty well from a consistency perspective. E.g. the 70s Upsetters singles (several 2CD
                        Message 11 of 30 , Apr 4, 2001
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                          On Mon, 2 Apr 2001, Jess Harvell wrote:

                          > Scratch can be exceedingly spotty, even at his Black Ark peak, and has left

                          Agreed, though his more song-focused production work stands up pretty well
                          from a consistency perspective. E.g. the 70s Upsetters singles (several
                          2CD volumes in a handsomely bound book package) and earlier rude boy
                          material (compiled on various CDs, my favorite of which is Chicken Scratch
                          on Heartbeat- actually the Wailers but released under Perry's name). It's
                          not 100% dub, but it is 100% great- I never really understood how someone
                          could listen only to dub and neglect all of the other fine offerings from
                          Jamaica.

                          Dubwise, I'll second the recommendation for Voodoism and also put in my
                          vote for Blackboard Jungle Dub, whose title track (version 1) is one of
                          the finest examples of dub murk around. A friend once remarked that she
                          likes that album because it doesn't really sound like anything else she's
                          ever heard and I agree. It's been reissued as part of the 2fer CD Scratch
                          Attack, on Ras.

                          -rob
                        • jamello@aol.com
                          In a message dated 01-04-02 17:47:18 EDT, you write:
                          Message 12 of 30 , Apr 4, 2001
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                            In a message dated 01-04-02 17:47:18 EDT, you write:

                            <<
                            P.S. To have said something useful in this post: could anyone comment on
                            releases by the label Bad Vugum? Are any essential listening? I've heard
                            some good things about Circle, but nothing else. Looks enigmatic.
                            >>

                            There are at least a half dozen wonderful Circle CDs, check the online
                            catalog at Aquarius Records for details. Haven't heard anything else on the
                            label, I believe they release stuff long ago (probably out of print) from
                            pre-Sahko Jimi Tenor's early band.
                          • R. Lim
                            ... Oh yeah- the album is out of print (recorded under the name Jimi Tenor and His Shamans), but there s a couple of exclusive tracks on the in-print
                            Message 13 of 30 , Apr 4, 2001
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                              On Wed, 4 Apr 2001 jamello@... wrote:

                              > catalog at Aquarius Records for details. Haven't heard anything else on the
                              > label, I believe they release stuff long ago (probably out of print) from
                              > pre-Sahko Jimi Tenor's early band.

                              Oh yeah- the album is out of print (recorded under the name Jimi Tenor and
                              His Shamans), but there's a couple of exclusive tracks on the in-print
                              compilation "Surprising Encounters." I haven't heard any of it, but I
                              just wanted to mention that the Dr. Gunni 7" with Doktor Motterfokker (or
                              whatever) is pretty sweet- it's also on a 7" on the pre-606 Vinyl
                              Communications which was a "sampler" of the two Bad Vugum singles.

                              -rob

                              ps- Heart of the Congos is an amazing album
                            • Kristopher S. Handley
                              ... I m having a bit of trouble finding this; what s it called, how available is it, what label, etc.? Thanks, ...
                              Message 14 of 30 , Apr 5, 2001
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                                >From: "R. Lim" <r-lim-1@...>
                                >E.g. the 70s Upsetters singles (several
                                >2CD volumes in a handsomely bound book package)

                                I'm having a bit of trouble finding this; what's it called, how available is
                                it, what label, etc.?

                                Thanks,

                                ---s
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                              • Jess Harvell
                                ... Agreed, of course, so let s get into the one area which no self-conscious Wire hipster seems to talk about...modern Jamaican dancehall... I ve really
                                Message 15 of 30 , Apr 5, 2001
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                                  >I never really understood how someone
                                  >could listen only to dub and neglect all of the other fine offerings from
                                  >Jamaica.

                                  Agreed, of course, so let's get into the one area which no self-conscious
                                  Wire hipster seems to talk about...modern Jamaican dancehall... I've really
                                  gotten into this stuff over the last couple of years...mostly through
                                  compilations like Greensleeves "Best Ragga Dancehall Of [Insert Year
                                  Here]"... Aside from the obligatory gat popping and ho slappin, I'm amazed
                                  at how completely funked up the rhythms are... Beenie Man's "Moses Cry" is
                                  like '91 Belg-core techno slowed down to 1/3 the speed... There's an
                                  Elephant Man track that's basically hard acid...wouldn't sound completely
                                  out of place in a Richie Hawtin set... Even at their worst, the rest have a
                                  similar skittery, fitful energy as the best Swiz Beats or Timbaland track...
                                  Am I alone here in my facinated flirtation with this stuff??

                                  -Sprout
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                                • Ryan Whitehead
                                  ... not at all. beyond roots and dub most people have no concept of the depth of jamaican music . . . even the fact that all jamaican music is referred to as
                                  Message 16 of 30 , Apr 5, 2001
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                                    >Am I alone here in my facinated flirtation with this stuff??

                                    not at all. beyond roots and dub most people have no concept of the depth of
                                    jamaican music . . . even the fact that all jamaican music is referred to as
                                    "reggae" when, one could argue, the true "reggae" period was built up
                                    to--from mento, to ska, to rocksteady, through the rebel period, to early
                                    reggae, and true reggae--and then moved beyond--through dub, deejays,
                                    dancehall, ragga, conscious ragga, etc.

                                    a continuation of this can be seen in the fact that those viewed as the
                                    paragons of jamaican music in the world at large--bob marley and lee
                                    perry--were actually unique figures standing, in many ways, outside of
                                    jamaican musics more dominant threads of sound systems, dancehalls,
                                    prominent producers, etc. this is particularly true of Marley . . . But
                                    that's a result of what i call the marlification of reggae (i've probably
                                    exposed this theory on list before)--"everyone" thinks Marley is synonymous
                                    with reggae, they hear reggae and ask if it's marley even if it sounds
                                    nothing like marley.

                                    with that brief rant out of the way, i'd like to point to a couple of
                                    producers around the legendary time of Perry that are equally worthy of
                                    investigation: Niney the Observer and Keith Hudson. Niney's Blood and Fire
                                    collection is unstopable, as are Keith Hudson's Pick A Dub and Studio Kinda
                                    Cloudy. I hear his Flesh of My Flesh is a frightful murk--in a good
                                    way--but i've yet to find a copy. A couple song oriented lee perry
                                    production to augment the recommendation of the Congoes--a pause for the
                                    congoes to stress that this is one of the greatest pieces of jamaican music
                                    ever recorded, particularly the two disc reissue of Blood and Fire--are the
                                    Junior Byles collections Curly Locks and Beat Down Babylon, and the Max
                                    Romeo discs Open the Iron Gate and War Inna Babylon.

                                    But this started on the ragga front. In a perverse way, the interest to
                                    wire-ites makes sense: check the Ambush records releases (particularly the
                                    comp Mash Up The Place, a reference to the dancehalls), anything by DJ Scud
                                    (the 7" on Machinebau, "total desctruction"), and the fantastic 7"s on Scuds
                                    Jah Vengeance label (Bloodclaat Gangsta Youth's--aka Dj Scud--"Kill Or Be
                                    Killed" and Jah Vengeance's--aka I-Sound--"No Light"). All fuse noizecore
                                    with wicked ragga sounds. Pull out the recommendations for wicked ragga . .
                                    . I don't think I'm the only one that's interested.


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                                  • Jason Witherspoon
                                    ... What s the Niney Blood & Fire collection called? I can t find any info on their seemingly-otherwise-up-to-date website-- Completely agreed on the _Pick a
                                    Message 17 of 30 , Apr 5, 2001
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                                      At 4:17 PM -0700 4/5/01, Ryan Whitehead wrote:
                                      >Niney's Blood and Fire
                                      >collection is unstopable, as are Keith Hudson's Pick A Dub and Studio Kinda
                                      >Cloudy.

                                      What's the Niney Blood & Fire collection called? I can't find any
                                      info on their seemingly-otherwise-up-to-date website--

                                      Completely agreed on the _Pick a Dub_-- great great album. I've also
                                      been very heavily into the Chantells & Friends _Children of Jah_ B&F
                                      comp; it's basically a comp of Roy Francis' tiny but excellent Phase
                                      One label from '77-'79. The best stuff on here reminds me much of
                                      the Congos, & there's a smattering of neato moogy action which makes
                                      it all the more excellent, though the meat of the matter is the
                                      wonderful songs.

                                      --


                                      Jason Witherspoon
                                      ICQ #62837760

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                                    • Ryan Whitehead
                                      Oops-- couple errors. I too misspelled Congos . . . and Dj Scud s label is Full Watts, not Jah Vengeance. As I said, Jah Vengeance is a nome-de-stylus of
                                      Message 18 of 30 , Apr 5, 2001
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                                        Oops--

                                        couple errors. I too misspelled "Congos" . . . and Dj Scud's label is Full
                                        Watts, not Jah Vengeance. As I said, Jah Vengeance is a nome-de-stylus of
                                        I-Sound . . . Just the lunacy of a late night at work.

                                        The Niney album is actually titled "Blood And Fire: Niney and Friends". It's
                                        on Trojan. Sorry for the misleading comment . . . There's just so damned
                                        much blood and fire and jah swirling around when one speaks of jamaican
                                        sounds that it's hard to keep it all straight.

                                        ryan


                                        >From: Jason Witherspoon <arzachel@...>
                                        >Reply-To: thewire@yahoogroups.com
                                        >To: thewire@yahoogroups.com
                                        >Subject: Re: [thewire] Lee Perry - a Jamaican Holger Czukay?
                                        >Date: Thu, 5 Apr 2001 16:34:57 -0700
                                        >
                                        >At 4:17 PM -0700 4/5/01, Ryan Whitehead wrote:
                                        > >Niney's Blood and Fire
                                        > >collection is unstopable, as are Keith Hudson's Pick A Dub and Studio
                                        >Kinda
                                        > >Cloudy.
                                        >
                                        >What's the Niney Blood & Fire collection called? I can't find any
                                        >info on their seemingly-otherwise-up-to-date website--
                                        >
                                        >Completely agreed on the _Pick a Dub_-- great great album. I've also
                                        >been very heavily into the Chantells & Friends _Children of Jah_ B&F
                                        >comp; it's basically a comp of Roy Francis' tiny but excellent Phase
                                        >One label from '77-'79. The best stuff on here reminds me much of
                                        >the Congos, & there's a smattering of neato moogy action which makes
                                        >it all the more excellent, though the meat of the matter is the
                                        >wonderful songs.
                                        >
                                        >--
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Jason Witherspoon
                                        > ICQ #62837760
                                        >
                                        > ---------
                                        > ----O----
                                        > --- ---
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                                        > ---------

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                                      • jamello@aol.com
                                        Message 19 of 30 , Apr 6, 2001
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                                          < not at all. beyond roots and dub most people have no concept of the depth of jamaican music . . . even the fact that all jamaican music is referred to as
                                          "reggae" when, one could argue, the true "reggae" period was built up to--from mento, to ska, to rocksteady, through the rebel period, to early
                                          reggae, and true reggae--and then moved beyond--through dub, deejays, dancehall, ragga, conscious ragga, etc. >

                                          Exactly the point I was going to make. I have the kind folks at Soul Jazz for opening my eyes, the four "Dynamite" comps have literally no dub tracks and clued me in to some wonderful examples of various "reggae" styles. Hell, I even went out and bought a Prince Buster compilation recently!

                                          RE: dancehall, Simon Reynolds' web page has a "faves of 2000" article with an entire section devoted to the genre. He too points out how the riddims are wack, merging elements of techno and hiphop (The Elephant Man CD even concludes with a take on a DMX track.)

                                          Of course, you still have to get over the playa/gangsta lyrics on some tracks, but overall a fun spin.
                                        • JacobM
                                          when the subject turns to ragga it always seems to end with someone mentioning Dj scud/ambush i d love to hear of any genuine ragga records that feature harder
                                          Message 20 of 30 , Apr 6, 2001
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                                            when the subject turns to ragga it always seems to end with someone
                                            mentioning Dj scud/ambush

                                            i'd love to hear of any genuine ragga records that feature harder than hard
                                            sounds..
                                            bashment records, bass saturated Dj mix tapes, etc..
                                            one to look out for..
                                            elephant man- cd killa-- voice processing cd skipping effects..

                                            any other sugestions?

                                            -----Original Message-----
                                            From: Jess Harvell [mailto:dubplatestyle@...]
                                            Sent: 05 April 2001 22:41
                                            To: thewire@yahoogroups.com
                                            Subject: Re: [thewire] Lee Perry - a Jamaican Holger Czukay?


                                            >I never really understood how someone
                                            >could listen only to dub and neglect all of the other fine offerings from
                                            >Jamaica.

                                            Agreed, of course, so let's get into the one area which no self-conscious
                                            Wire hipster seems to talk about...modern Jamaican dancehall... I've really
                                            gotten into this stuff over the last couple of years...mostly through
                                            compilations like Greensleeves "Best Ragga Dancehall Of [Insert Year
                                            Here]"... Aside from the obligatory gat popping and ho slappin, I'm amazed
                                            at how completely funked up the rhythms are... Beenie Man's "Moses Cry" is
                                            like '91 Belg-core techno slowed down to 1/3 the speed... There's an
                                            Elephant Man track that's basically hard acid...wouldn't sound completely
                                            out of place in a Richie Hawtin set... Even at their worst, the rest have a
                                            similar skittery, fitful energy as the best Swiz Beats or Timbaland track...
                                            Am I alone here in my facinated flirtation with this stuff??

                                            -Sprout
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                                          • R. Lim
                                            ... The Complete Upsetter Singles Collection, vols 1-3 (a fourth is due next month- I haven t had a chance to hear the third one yet). They re on Trojan, so
                                            Message 21 of 30 , Apr 6, 2001
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                                              On Thu, 5 Apr 2001, Kristopher S. Handley wrote:

                                              > >From: "R. Lim" <r-lim-1@...>
                                              > >E.g. the 70s Upsetters singles (several
                                              > >2CD volumes in a handsomely bound book package)
                                              >
                                              > I'm having a bit of trouble finding this; what's it called, how available is
                                              > it, what label, etc.?

                                              The Complete Upsetter Singles Collection, vols 1-3 (a fourth is due next
                                              month- I haven't had a chance to hear the third one yet). They're on
                                              Trojan, so they should run you about $30/each.

                                              -rob
                                            • Ryan Whitehead
                                              Oh, correction: this has not ended up with someone mentioning DJ Scud, but begun with someone mentioning DJ Scud. I m not sure if this is saying everyone
                                              Message 22 of 30 , Apr 6, 2001
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                                                Oh, correction: this has not ended up with someone mentioning DJ Scud, but
                                                begun with someone mentioning DJ Scud. I'm not sure if this is saying
                                                "everyone knows this stuff . . . don't mention it" or "it's crap . . . don't
                                                mention it" or just "hey, look, you mentioned it". Anyway, I think that the
                                                releases I mentioned are excellent and there aren't many other people
                                                currently integrating ragga into adventurous music--please correct me if i'm
                                                wrong. Sure, in the days of old, jungle and the bristol stuff took up
                                                dancehall/ragga and ran it well into their chosen genre's burst seams. But
                                                today it's mostly 2 Step Garage which, though a guilty pleasure of mine, is
                                                VERY conservative--morally, philosophically, musically, etc.

                                                When diving into "true" ragga, I often feel like i've just missed that
                                                energy that overwhelms the best Ambush/full watts/noizecore ragga tracks.
                                                some older stuff that's not as fried as we're looking for, but excellent
                                                nonetheless: Bounty Killer's "My Xperience", Ninja Man's "Bounty Hunter",
                                                the "Hardcore Ragga" compilation, and maybe the "Ragga Essentials: In A
                                                Dancehall Style" compilation. Though uniformly excellent, most of these are
                                                less packed with insanity than I want. I have the impression that the truly
                                                wild stuff is hidden throughout the mass production of tracks, the broken
                                                down wax factories of jamaican ghettos--am I off the mark here?

                                                Though someone already mentioned it, Simon Reynold's site does point to many
                                                promising sounding compilations. I've got the "Dancehall 101" compilations
                                                on VP, packed with good tracks and the occassional cage rattling rhythm, and
                                                several of the "Strictly The Best" compilations, which follow the same
                                                unpredictable good/great pattern. I used to be turned off by these
                                                compilations because the covers are so incredibly tacky . . . don't let that
                                                discourage. The Rough Guide to reggae also has chapters on Ragga and
                                                Dancehall that pull out the historical inflection points.

                                                rw out*

                                                >when the subject turns to ragga it always seems to end with someone
                                                >mentioning Dj scud/ambush
                                                >
                                                >i'd love to hear of any genuine ragga records that feature harder than hard
                                                >sounds..
                                                > bashment records, bass saturated Dj mix tapes, etc..
                                                >one to look out for..
                                                >elephant man- cd killa-- voice processing cd skipping effects..
                                                >
                                                >any other sugestions?
                                                >
                                                >-----Original Message-----
                                                >From: Jess Harvell [mailto:dubplatestyle@...]
                                                >Sent: 05 April 2001 22:41
                                                >To: thewire@yahoogroups.com
                                                >Subject: Re: [thewire] Lee Perry - a Jamaican Holger Czukay?
                                                >
                                                >
                                                > >I never really understood how someone
                                                > >could listen only to dub and neglect all of the other fine offerings from
                                                > >Jamaica.
                                                >
                                                >Agreed, of course, so let's get into the one area which no self-conscious
                                                >Wire hipster seems to talk about...modern Jamaican dancehall... I've
                                                >really
                                                >gotten into this stuff over the last couple of years...mostly through
                                                >compilations like Greensleeves "Best Ragga Dancehall Of [Insert Year
                                                >Here]"... Aside from the obligatory gat popping and ho slappin, I'm amazed
                                                >at how completely funked up the rhythms are... Beenie Man's "Moses Cry" is
                                                >like '91 Belg-core techno slowed down to 1/3 the speed... There's an
                                                >Elephant Man track that's basically hard acid...wouldn't sound completely
                                                >out of place in a Richie Hawtin set... Even at their worst, the rest have
                                                >a
                                                >similar skittery, fitful energy as the best Swiz Beats or Timbaland
                                                >track...
                                                >Am I alone here in my facinated flirtation with this stuff??
                                                >
                                                >-Sprout
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                                              • Jess Harvell
                                                ... No, I think you re bang on...that was kinda what I was trying to say when I started (this end) of the thread...(I guess in the vain hopes that there would
                                                Message 23 of 30 , Apr 7, 2001
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                                                  >I have the impression that the truly
                                                  >wild stuff is hidden throughout the mass production of tracks, the broken
                                                  >down wax factories of jamaican ghettos--am I off the mark here?

                                                  No, I think you're bang on...that was kinda what I was trying to say when I
                                                  started (this end) of the thread...(I guess in the vain hopes that there
                                                  would be someone here that was inordinantly expertised in the genre)...I
                                                  think to find the truly out there one offs you have to be "living the life,"
                                                  i.e. scouring dingy record stores wallpapered with little 7" singles...it's
                                                  like any subculture, throw a newbie into the mix and he's not gonna be able
                                                  to distinguish DJ Hype from Aquasky, Napalm Death from Stryper...except by
                                                  listening, exploring, yadda, yadda...also, I think we're missing a lot of
                                                  the impact of these songs listening to them on the frictionless digital
                                                  surface of a CD...namely: the bass intensive club sound system, the crowd,
                                                  the drugs, the mix (such as it is...there ain't a lot of seamless/banal
                                                  Oakentroll trance mixing goin on in the dancehall), basically the vibe...

                                                  >I used to be turned off by these
                                                  >compilations because the covers are so incredibly tacky . . . don't let
                                                  >that
                                                  >discourage.

                                                  I use to feel the same way...but a decade of house & jungle comps (is it de
                                                  rigeur for these things to have uniformly awful covers?) and hardcore rap
                                                  (alla those post-No Limit glittering, fisheyed letters..) - not to mention
                                                  all the metal I listen to as a teen - cured me of that...sometimes you just
                                                  gotta swallow your taste and your pride...;)

                                                  -Sprout

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                                                • trommer
                                                  a side note... ...jamaica isn t the only source for dancehall, ragga, etc.... toronto has the largest concentration of jamaicans outside of kingston, and has
                                                  Message 24 of 30 , Apr 7, 2001
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                                                    a side note...
                                                    ...jamaica isn't the only source for dancehall, ragga, etc....
                                                    toronto has the largest concentration of jamaicans outside of kingston,
                                                    and has always quite a thriving scene with many small labels, vinyl
                                                    cutters, a shit-load of little mom & pop hole-in-the-wall record stores
                                                    (on eglinton ave: the black uhuru song 'youth of eglinton' is about the
                                                    neighbourhood and michael rose has since relocated there)
                                                    when d&b was in its infancy (when it was still popularily known as
                                                    'jungle') there was alot of wicked hard raw ragga-jungle coming out of
                                                    that scene...the whole dancehall scene is still very active here as
                                                    well...

                                                    worth checking out.
                                                  • ZURAW,BRYAN LAWRENCE
                                                    ... i think yr right about this and it goes even further. it s been a long time since i went to dances (in montreal, and not all that much) but it was an
                                                    Message 25 of 30 , Apr 7, 2001
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                                                      > surface of a CD...namely: the bass intensive club sound system, the crowd,
                                                      > the drugs, the mix (such as it is...there ain't a lot of seamless/banal
                                                      > Oakentroll trance mixing goin on in the dancehall), basically the vibe...
                                                      >
                                                      i think yr right about this and it goes even further. it's been a long
                                                      time since i went to dances (in montreal, and not all that much) but
                                                      it was an ear-opening experience. the records are like dj tools - they're
                                                      mixed with a live DJ (ie MC) and soemtimes a live singer too and cut in
                                                      with lots of dubplates etc... i've never heard any dj scud/ambush stuff yr
                                                      discussing, but the dancehall performance of a good sound seems
                                                      to approach that density. if you can find good reggae radio shows -
                                                      you also get a taste of this experience. i find this is the case with
                                                      club oriented scenes generally - the records as is only give part of
                                                      the flavour of the aural experience in the club, even discounting the
                                                      lights, dancers and drugs and the pa.

                                                      bryan

                                                      ps. i live in la, and if anyone knows of such a radio show out here,
                                                      please inform.
                                                    • Jason Witherspoon
                                                      ... I dunno-- a comp like _Family Planning_ really points to an outer edge for the whole 2 Step vibe-- or is that comp more shiki shiki ? -- Jason Witherspoon
                                                      Message 26 of 30 , Apr 7, 2001
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                                                        At 11:06 AM -0700 4/6/01, Ryan Whitehead wrote:
                                                        >But
                                                        >today it's mostly 2 Step Garage which, though a guilty pleasure of mine, is
                                                        >VERY conservative--morally, philosophically, musically, etc.

                                                        I dunno-- a comp like _Family Planning_ really points to an outer
                                                        edge for the whole 2 Step vibe-- or is that comp more "shiki shiki"?

                                                        --


                                                        Jason Witherspoon
                                                        ICQ #62837760

                                                        ---------
                                                        ----O----
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                                                      • Jess Harvell
                                                        ... Yeah...which is why most of these musics have yet to dent the American pop scene...rock crits are too blindered by devotion to the album format, deriving
                                                        Message 27 of 30 , Apr 7, 2001
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                                                          >i find this is the case with
                                                          >club oriented scenes generally - the records as is only give part of
                                                          >the flavour of the aural experience in the club, even discounting the
                                                          >lights, dancers and drugs and the pa.
                                                          >
                                                          Yeah...which is why most of these musics have yet to dent the American pop
                                                          scene...rock crits are too blindered by devotion to the album format,
                                                          deriving "meaning" from music in the standard, approved, literary way...and
                                                          many tracks which can sound amazing "en mix" sound pitiable heard in
                                                          isolation...so much of my favorite jungle (of the jump-up/hardstep variety)
                                                          sounds thin and smallish as tracks...a sing songy bassline and a million
                                                          Amen variations...dancehall even goes one step further...all those hundreds
                                                          of tracks with a simple variation on the same riddim, like
                                                          "doorslam"...dancehall radio shows in the US, at least the ones I've heard
                                                          on NYC's Hot 97 and Philly's Power 99, tend to sound more like a pirate or a
                                                          live mix: rowdy, party in studio vibe, if not "mixing" per se...certainly
                                                          more energy than yer average MOR station...I think all music...the further
                                                          it moves away from its "intended" (the club, the concert hall, the tightly
                                                          focused pair of headphones) loses something, either in sound or vibe or
                                                          both...and home listening of any sort is usually an approximation...

                                                          -sprout

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                                                        • Ed Lynch-Bell
                                                          Speaking of Lee Perry. Has anyone written a good bio on him? Ed -- Ed Lynch-Bell mailto:dali@zerointegrity.co.uk http://www.zerointegrity.co.uk/ ICQ:100711886
                                                          Message 28 of 30 , Apr 9, 2001
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                                                            Speaking of Lee Perry. Has anyone written a good bio on him?

                                                            Ed
                                                            --
                                                            Ed Lynch-Bell
                                                            mailto:dali@...
                                                            http://www.zerointegrity.co.uk/
                                                            ICQ:100711886
                                                            tel:(+39) 0348 855 8586
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