The Rough Guide to Ska

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
In keeping with the Rough Guide standard, this single-disc compilation of tracks from producer Vincent "Randy" Chin's personal stash is nothing less than stellar. While there are many well-known acts here -- the Skatalites three selections and the pre-reggae Maytals two -- there are plenty of obscurities here. In fact, 12 of the album's 21 tracks have not been reissued since they were first recorded and released as singles. Some of the rarities include Rico Rodriguez's "Rico Special" from 1961 and the jump blues-derived "A Little Mashin'" by Bunny & Skitter from that same year. The early-'60s material is special because it shows how wide-open the ska scene was to ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
In keeping with the Rough Guide standard, this single-disc compilation of tracks from producer Vincent "Randy" Chin's personal stash is nothing less than stellar. While there are many well-known acts here -- the Skatalites three selections and the pre-reggae Maytals two -- there are plenty of obscurities here. In fact, 12 of the album's 21 tracks have not been reissued since they were first recorded and released as singles. Some of the rarities include Rico Rodriguez's "Rico Special" from 1961 and the jump blues-derived "A Little Mashin'" by Bunny & Skitter from that same year. The early-'60s material is special because it shows how wide-open the ska scene was to embracing anything and everything it could adapt -- check out "Blockade" from 1961, a boogie-woogie number twisted and turned through a horn section headed by Rodriguez into a slow ska burner. And then there's Basil Gabbidon's unique use of the electric guitar in "Iveree" from 1962. Smooth-voiced Alton Ellis is featured here in one of his earliest sessions with Eddie Parkins in a doo wop performance set to a ska rhythm -- killer stuff. Cornel Campbell's sweet vocal on "Make Hay" from 1963 offers a hint of what was to come, with him bringing the spirits of Frankie Lymon and Dion into his singing style. In all, this is thoroughly enjoyable, with great liner notes and sequencing. Audiophiles may have a tough time with some of this, as Jamaican recording studios were hardly state of the art, but the sound is more than adequate and the performances far outweigh any shortcomings in the masters. Rock-solid.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/22/2003
  • Label: World Music Network
  • UPC: 605633108323
  • Catalog Number: 331083

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Malcolm X (2:31)
  2. 2 Rico Special - Rico (3:20)
  3. 3 A Little Mashin' (2:08)
  4. 4 Iveree (2:19)
  5. 5 Blockade - Dizzy Johnny (2:23)
  6. 6 Let Me Dream - Alton Ellis & Eddy Perkins (1:49)
  7. 7 Leave Out Babylon (1:43)
  8. 8 Rico Farewell - Rico (2:51)
  9. 9 Make Hay (2:51)
  10. 10 Blow Roland Blow (2:26)
  11. 11 Someone's Going to Bawl (2:08)
  12. 12 Skaramont (2:10)
  13. 13 Woman of Samaria - Naomi Adams (2:24)
  14. 14 Ska-Racha (2:13)
  15. 15 Don't Stay Out Late (2:40)
  16. 16 Sam the Fisherman (3:10)
  17. 17 Revelation - Stranger & Ken (1:38)
  18. 18 Freedom Ska (2:29)
  19. 19 Lost Penny (2:15)
  20. 20 Baby Elephant Walk (2:53)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Don Drummond Trombone
Roland Alphonso Tenor Saxophone
Richard Ace Piano
Gladstone Anderson Piano
Baba Brooks Trumpet
Raymond Harper Trumpet
Lloyd Knibbs Drums
Tommy McCook Tenor Saxophone
Jackie Mittoo Piano
Johnny "Dizzy" Moore Trumpet
Ernest Ranglin Guitar
Lester Sterling Alto Saxophone
Rico Rodriguez Trombone
Harold McKenzie Guitar
Arkland "Drumbago" Parks Drums
Stanley Ribbs Tenor Saxophone
Carl Bryan Alto Saxophone
Bobby Gaynair Tenor Saxophone
Charlie Organaire Organ, Harmonica
Technical Credits
Lawrence Cedar Mastering
Steve Barrow Sleeve Notes
Clive Chin Licensing
Graeme Goodall Engineer
Vincent "Randy" Chin Producer
Wildcat Artwork
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