Something Special: Ska Hot Shots

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richie Unterberger
No single compilation could fairly represent the breadth of Alphonso's career -- so often did he record as a solo artist, bandleader, band member, and session musician. This, however, is an excellent 20-song retrospective of vintage sides from 1958-68 released largely under his own name; if they weren't, they were by groups in which Alphonso was the leader or principal player. Actually, he recorded in a staggering variety of guises, and this anthology includes cuts that were billed to Roland Alphonso & the Alley Cats, Roland Alphonso & the Studio One Orchestra, Roland Alphonso & the Soul Brothers, just the Soul Brothers, Rolando & His Group, Soul ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Richie Unterberger
No single compilation could fairly represent the breadth of Alphonso's career -- so often did he record as a solo artist, bandleader, band member, and session musician. This, however, is an excellent 20-song retrospective of vintage sides from 1958-68 released largely under his own name; if they weren't, they were by groups in which Alphonso was the leader or principal player. Actually, he recorded in a staggering variety of guises, and this anthology includes cuts that were billed to Roland Alphonso & the Alley Cats, Roland Alphonso & the Studio One Orchestra, Roland Alphonso & the Soul Brothers, just the Soul Brothers, Rolando & His Group, Soul Vendors, Clue J & His Blues Blasters, Rolando & the Sharks, and so on... you get the picture. The important thing is that these are exciting, seminal ska and reggae instrumentals, with styles traversing ska roots to rock steady and soul-influenced reggae. There's more variety to be heard here than with almost any other single-artist ska compilation -- from ska takes on spy movie themes and witty novelties like "Rollie Pollie" to the cooking "Do It Good" which is as close to early American funk-soul as it is to reggae. Alphonso plays imaginative, jazzy sax throughout, and unlike many of the ska brassmen, was not prone to a wobbly or out-of-tune squeak. Among the dozens of other musicians heard on this collection are numerous major ska-reggae figures: Tommy McCook, Rico Rodriquez, Ernest Ranglin, Rita Marley, Clement Dodd, Jackie Mittoo, and even Lee Perry. The liner notes, recording and release dates, and session personnel are amazingly comprehensive for an early reggae reissue. Three of the songs were previously unreleased.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/18/2000
  • Label: Heartbeat / Pgd
  • UPC: 011661772823
  • Catalog Number: 617728

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Four Corners (2:41)
  2. 2 From Russia With Love (4:19)
  3. 3 Dr. Ring Ding (3:05)
  4. 4 Jack Ruby (2:41)
  5. 5 El Pussy Cat Ska (3:16)
  6. 6 Federal Special (2:43)
  7. 7 Do It Good (3:18)
  8. 8 Jah Shakey (2:05)
  9. 9 Pepe To (2:57)
  10. 10 You Trouble Me - Soul Vendors (3:06)
  11. 11 Rollie Pollie (2:17)
  12. 12 Proof Rum (3:25)
  13. 13 James Bond - The Soul Brothers (2:59)
  14. 14 Provocation (2:19)
  15. 15 Grand National (3:00)
  16. 16 Hully Gully Rock (2:52)
  17. 17 Something Special (3:27)
  18. 18 Rolando Special (3:22)
  19. 19 Groovy Sax (3:14)
  20. 20 Maria Elena (3:49)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Roland Alphonso Primary Artist, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Rita Marley Vocals
Aubrey Adams Organ, Piano
Lloyd Brevett Bass
Karl Bryan Alto Saxophone
Fred Crossley Bass
Clement "Coxsone" Dodd Percussion, Vocals, Hand Clapping
Bobby Ellis Trumpet
Lloyd Knibbs Drums
Cecil Lloyd Organ, Piano
Tommy McCook Tenor Saxophone
Ernest Ranglin Guitar
Lloyd Robinson Drums
Lester Sterling Alto Saxophone
Dennis Sindrey Guitar
Errol Walters Guitar
Soul Vendors Track Performer
Ken Williams Drums
Joe Isaacs Drums
Bryan Atkinson Bass
Technical Credits
Clement "Coxsone" Dodd Producer, Engineer, Liner Notes
Sylvan Morris Engineer
Toby Mountain Mastering
Brian Keyo Liner Notes
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