The Wailing Wailers


The Wailing Wailers is the debut album by The Wailers published on the Studio One label. Originally released in very late 1965 and compiled from various recordings made over the years 1963-1965, it compiles what Clement Coxsone Dodd considered the best Wailers recordings from this period. It is not a studio album in the conventional sense but was the first full length LP released of the band’s work. The album has remained in print since its release, but after the first release (which has a different cover) each release of the album was newly overdubbed to fit with musical trends of the time. The album has never been released on CD with the original tracklisting or cover but all tracks (with and without overdubs) are available across various compilations released by Heartbeat Records in the 1990s and 2000s. The front cover’s band photo was also an inspiration for Walt Jabsco, the unofficial logo for 2 Tone Records, the drawing was created by Jerry Dammers and Horace Panter and is based on Peter Tosh (right).

Bob Marley & The Wailers were a Jamaican reggae, ska and rocksteady band formed by Bob Marley, Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer in 1963. Additional members were Junior Braithwaite, Beverley Kelso, Cherry Smith and Aston and Carlton Barrett. The band came to an end with the death of Bob Marley in 1981.

They were known variously as The Teenagers, The Wailing Rudeboys, The Wailing Wailers and finally The Wailers. By 1966 Braithwaite, Kelso and Smith had left the band, which then consisted of the trio Livingston, Marley and Tosh (Neville Livingston being the birth name of Bunny Wailer).

Some of The Wailers most notable songs were recorded with Lee “Scratch” Perry and his studio band The Upsetters. During the early 1970s The Upsetters members Aston “Family Man” Barrett and his brother Carlton (Carlie) Barrett,[1] formed the Wailers Band, providing instrumental backing for The Wailers.

The Wailers recorded groundbreaking reggae songs such as “Simmer Down”, “Trenchtown Rock”, “Nice Time”, “War”, “Stir It Up” and “Get Up, Stand Up”.
The Wailers disbanded in 1974 due to Tosh and Livingston’s refusal to tour. Bob Marley formed Bob Marley & The Wailers with Bob Marley himself as guitarist, songwriter and main singer, the Wailers Band as the backing band, and the I Threes as backup vocalists. The Wailers Band included the brothers Carlton Barrett and “Family Man” Barrett on drums and bass respectively, Junior Marvin and Al Anderson playing lead guitar, Tyrone Downie and Earl “Wya” Lindo playing keyboard, and Alvin “Seeco” Patterson playing percussion. The I Threes, consisted of Bob Marley’s wife Rita Marley, Judy Mowatt and Marcia Griffiths.
Bob Marley & The Wailers, Peter Tosh, and Bunny Wailer all enjoyed considerable success as reggae music continued to gain popularity during the 1970s and 1980s.
Several of the group’s members have died subsequent to Marley’s death in 1981: Carlton Barrett and Tosh in 1987, Braithwaite in 1999, and Smith in 2008.[2] Bunny Wailer and Beverley Kelso are the only surviving members of the group’s original line-up.

The Maytals

Toots and the Maytals, originally called simply The Maytals, are a Jamaican musical group and one of the best known ska and reggae vocal groups. According to Sandra Brennan at Allmusic, “The Maytals were key figures in reggae music. Formed in the early 1960s when ska was hot, the Maytals had a reputation for having strong, well-blended voices and a seldom-rivaled passion for their music. Frontman Hibbert’s soulful style led him to be compared to Otis Redding”.[1]
Contents [hide]
1 Career
2 Discography
2.1 Studio albums
2.2 Live albums
2.3 Compilation albums
2.4 Other Contributions
3 Contemporary usage
3.1 Covers
3.2 Samples
3.3 Soundtrack appearances
4 See also
5 References
6 External links
[edit]Career

Frederick “Toots” Hibbert, the frontman of the group, was born in May Pen, Clarendon, Jamaica in 1945, the youngest of seven children. He grew up singing gospel music in a church choir, and moved to Kingston in 1958 at the age of thirteen.
In Kingston, Hibbert met Henry “Raleigh” Gordon and Nathaniel “Jerry” Mathias, forming in 1961[2] a group whose early recordings were incorrectly attributed to ‘The Flames’ and ‘The Vikings’ in the UK by Island Records. The Maytals first had chart success recording for producer Clement “Coxsone” Dodd at Studio One. With musical backing from Dodd’s house band, The Skatalites, the Maytals’ close-harmony gospel singing ensured success, overshadowing Dodd’s other up-and-coming vocal group, The Wailers. After staying at Studio One for about two years, the group moved on to do sessions for Prince Buster before recording with Byron Lee in 1966.[1] With Lee, the Maytals won the first-ever Jamaican Independence Festival Popular Song Competition with their original song “Bam Bam” (later covered in a Dancehall style by Sister Nancy, and also by Yellowman in 1982).[1][3] However, the group’s musical career was interrupted in late 1966 when Hibbert was arrested and imprisoned for 18 months.[1] He stated that he was not arrested for ganja, but whilst bailing a friend.[4] He also stated that he made up the number 54-46 when writing “54-46 That’s My Number” about his time in jail.[5]
Following Hibbert’s release from jail towards the end of 1967, the Maytals began working with the Chinese Jamaican producer Leslie Kong, a collaboration which yielded a string of hits throughout the late 1960s and early 1970s.[1] These included “Do the Reggay”, one of several songs released in 1968 to first use the word ‘reggae’ (spelled ‘reggay’) in a Jamaican recording;[6] “Pressure Drop”; “54-46 That’s My Number” the 1969 Jamaica festival’s popular song winner; “Sweet and Dandy”;[7] and “Monkey Man”, the group’s first international hit in 1970.[1] By 1971, they had not only become the biggest act on the island, they were also (thanks to signing a recording contract with Chris Blackwell’s Island Records) international stars.[1] In 1972 they won their third Jamaica festival popular song with “Pomps and Pride”.[7] The group was also featured twice in the soundtrack to The Harder They Come, the 1972 film starring Jimmy Cliff, named as one of Vanity Fair’s Top 10 soundtracks of all time.
After Kong’s death in 1971, the group continued to record with Kong’s former sound engineer, Warrick Lyn. Their re-instated producer Byron Lee renamed them Toots & the Maytals.[1] The group released three best-selling albums produced by Lyn and Blackwell of Island Records, and enjoyed international hits with Funky Kingston in 1973 and Reggae Got Soul in 1975. Following the release of Reggae Got Soul, Toots & the Maytals were invited to tour as the opening act for The Who during their 1975-76 North American tour.[8] The tour went poorly and Toots & the Maytals never went on to the success of Bob Marley or Peter Tosh in the U.S.[9]
Toots and the Maytals’ compositions would be given a second airing in 1978-80 during the reggae punk and ska revival period in the UK, when The Specials included “Monkey Man” on their 1979 debut album and The Clash covered “Pressure Drop”. They were also included in the lyrics to Bob Marley & The Wailers song, “Punky Reggae Party” – “The Wailers will be there, The Damned, The Jam, The Clash, The Maytals will be there, Dr. Feelgood too”. In 1982, Toots & the Maytals’ “Beautiful Woman”, reached number one in New Zealand, but the group had already broken up.[1]
They reformed in the early 1990s to continue touring and recording successfully.[1]
In 2005, the group released True Love, an album consisting of re-recorded versions of their earlier hits, alongside Bonnie Raitt, Willie Nelson, Eric Clapton, Keith Richards, Trey Anastasio, No Doubt, Ben Harper, The Roots, and Shaggy. The album won the Grammy Award that year for best reggae album.
In 2006, they recorded a reggae/ska version of Radiohead’s “Let Down” for the tribute album, Radiodread, by the Easy Star All-Stars. The album was a song for song makeover of the English rock band’s album OK Computer into reggae, dub and ska. In August 2007 Toots & the Maytals released Light Your Light, which featured re-workings of older songs such as “Johnny Cool Man”, as well as new material. The album was nominated in 2008 for a Grammy in the best reggae album category.
Toots & the Maytals hold the current record of number one hits in Jamaica, with a total of thirty one.[citation needed]
In March 2009 it was announced that Toots & the Maytals would be performing alongside Amy Winehouse, for their shared record label, Island Records’ 50th anniversary. Winehouse had covered the band’s “Monkey Man”, and the act were supposed to support her at the Shepherds Bush Empire in London on 31 May 2009.[10] However, Winehouse was forced to cancel, leaving the Maytals to play at the more intimate Bush Hall, round the corner from the Empire, to a sell-out crowd.
In the summer of 2009, Toots and the Maytals performed at the Mountain Jam festival at Hunter Mountain, New York.
On 8 July 2011, Toots and the Maytals played the Winnipeg Folk Festival to an outdoor dancing crowd of thousands.
In August 2011, Toots and the Maytals are due to appear at a small number of outdoor events, including Rhythm Festival[11]

The Godfather of Rocksteady

Alton Ellis

 
 

Biography

Ellis was born in 1938 and grew up in Kingston’s Trench Town district. Born into a musical family, he learned to play piano at a young age.[6] He attended Ebeneezer and Boys’ Town schools, where he excelled in both music and sport.[7] He initially sought fame as a dancer, competing on Vere Johns’ Opportunity Hour.[8] After winning a couple of competitions, he switched to singing, starting his career in 1959 as part of the duo Alton & Eddy with Eddy Perkins.[9] Ellis and Perkins recorded for Coxsone Dodd at Studio One, initially in the R&B style, having a massive hit with “Muriel” (from Dodd’s first commercially-oriented recording session at Federal studios),[10] a song Ellis had written whilst working as a labourer on a building site[7] and recording follow-ups with “My Heaven”, “Lullabye Angel”, “I Know It All”, “I’m Never Gonna Cry” and “Yours”.[7] The duo also recorded a few tracks for Vincent Chin’s Randy’s label, but came to an end when after winning a major talent contest, Perkins moved to the United States.[9] Ellis remained in Kingston, working as a printer and after losing his job, he restarted his music career, initially forming a new duo with John Holt.[7] When Holt joined The Paragons, Ellis formed a new group, The Flames. Ellis continued to work for Dodd and also recorded for his arch-rival, Duke Reid on his Treasure Isle label.[9] By the mid 1960s, ska was moving on and the beat was slowing down to rocksteady and becoming associated with the violent rude boy subculture in Jamaican dancehalls. Many artists made records referring to the rude boys, including Ellis, although his records were consistently anti-rudie, including “Don’t Trouble People”, “Dance Crasher”, and “Cry Tough”, in contrast to artists such as Bob Marley, whom Ellis blamed for glorifiying the rudies.[10] Recording with The Flames (the varying line-up of which included his brother Leslie Ellis, David “Baby G” Gordon and Winston Jarrett), Ellis scored big with the hits “Girl I’ve Got a Date”, “Cry Tough” and “Rock Steady”, which was the first song to refer to the name of the newer genre. As rocksteady dominated the Jamaican airwaves for the next two years, Ellis continued to score hits for Treasure Isle, working with artists such as Lloyd Charmers, Phyllis Dillon and The Heptones. His Mr Soul of Jamaica album is regarded as one of the definitive rocksteady albums.[9]
During the late 1960s and early 1970s, Ellis recorded for some of Jamaica’s top producers, having two huge hits with Lloyd Daley in “Deliver Us” and “Back to Africa” and recording for Bunny Lee, Keith Hudson, and Herman Chin Loy.[9] Ellis toured the United Kingdom in the 1967 with Ken Boothe and Studio One session band the Soul Vendors and on his return to Jamaica he worked with Dodd, recording the tracks that would be released as his debut album Alton Ellis Sings Rock & Soul.[7] He also began to produce his own records, including “My Time Is The Right Time” and “The Message”.[7]
Ellis regularly returned to England, working with several London-based producers and after spending a few years in Canada, from 1972 he based himself permanently in the UK.[9] Ellis continued to record and perform regularly, recording in the early 1980s for emerging producers including Henry “Junjo” Lawes, Sugar Minott, and King Jammy.[10] He also opened up the All-Tone record shop in South London, and started a record label of the same name.[3][11]
The “Mad Mad” riddim, first recorded by Ellis in 1967 would later be recycled in more than one hundred other songs. The instantly recognizable three-note descending horn line was reinterpreted by Henry “Junjo” Lawes and eventually became known widely as the “Diseases” reggae riddim. “Diseases” is notably utilized in Yellowman’s hit song “”Zungguzungguguzungguzeng”, which has in turn has been sampled and reinterpreted by a long list of popular hip hop artists including KRS-One, The Notorious B.I.G., Tupac Shakur and Blackstar. This constant reinterpretation and referencing has made Ellis a major but little-known influence in the trajectory of dancehall, reggae and hip hop.[12]
Ellis continued to be active on the reggae scene until his health began to deteriorate.[13] His latest works include performing all over Europe with a French backing-band called ASPO (About Some Precioux Oldies) at the beginning of the 21st century. Recorded in Bordeaux, France, Live with Aspo: Workin’ on a Groovy Thing is the only live album Alton Ellis ever published (2001).
In 2004, Ellis was awarded the Order of Distinction by the Jamaican government in recognition of his achievements.[7]
In December 2007, he was admitted to hospital in London for treatment of cancer of the lymph glands, but he returned to live performance after receiving chemotherapy.[2][14]
Ellis died on 10 October 2008 at Hammersmith Hospital, west London, of cancer.[15] His death prompted a statement from Jamaica’s Minister of Information, Culture, Youth and Sports, Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange, who said “even as we mourn the great Alton Ellis, we must give thanks for his monumental contribution to the development of Jamaica’s popular music”.[16] A funeral service and celebration of his life was held on the 3rd of November, attended by family, fans, music industry personnel and government ministers, with tribute performances from stars including Winston ‘Fix It’ Francis, Tinga Stewart, George Nooks, Tony Gregory, Ken Boothe, Judy Mowatt and Carlene Davis.[17]
He was the older brother of the late Hortense Ellis, and the father of more than twenty children including Noel Ellis and Christopher Ellis, who are both reggae singers.[2]
[edit]Discography

[edit]Albums
Mr Soul of Jamaica (Treasure Isle, 1967)
Sings Rock and Soul (Studio One, 1967)
The Best Of (Coxsone, 1969)
Sunday Coming (Coxsone, 1970)
Greatest Hits (Count Shelly, 1973)
Later released as Cry Tough (Heartbeat, 1993)
Still in Love (Horse, 1977)
A Love to Share (Third World, 1979)
Showcase (Studio One, 1984)
Slummin’ (Abraham, 198?)
A New Day (Body Music, 1983)
Daydreaming (Silver Camel, 1983)
25th Silver Jubilee (Sky Note, 1984)
Continuation (All Tone, 1985)
Jubilee Volume 2 (Sky Note, 1985)
Here I Am (Angella, 1988)
Family Vibes (All Tone, 1992)
Man From Studio One (All Tone, 1994)
Change My Mind (Orchard, 2000)
More Alton Ellis (T.P., 2001)
Live with Aspo: Workin’ on a Groovy Thing (Belleville International/Patate Records, 2001)
With the Heptones
Mr Ska Bean’a (Cha Cha, 1981)
Alton Ellis Sings, Heptones Harmonise (1978–80) (Jet Star, 19??)
With Hortense Ellis
Alton & Hortense Ellis at Studio 1 (Heartbeat, 1990)
[edit]Compilations
All My Tears (1965–68) (Brook, 2006)
Arise Black Man (1968–78) (Moll Selekta, 19??)
Be True to Yourself (196?-7?) (Trojan, 2004)
Get Ready for Rock Reggae Steady (1967–74) (Jamaican Gold, 1999)
Many Moods of Alton Ellis (1978–80) (Tele-Tech, 1980)
My Time Is the Right Time (1966–71) (Westside, 2000)
Reggae Valley of Decision (197X) (House of Reggae, 1996)
Soul Groover (Trojan, 1997)
Reggae Max (Jet Star, 1997)
The Duke Reid Collection (Rhino, 1999)
Soul of Jamaica (Bianco, 2001)
It Hurts Me So (Essential Gold, 2006)
Reggae Chronicles (Hallmark, 2006)
Muriel (All Tone, 2007)

Hep Cat

 

Hepcat’s debut album, Out of Nowhere was released in 1993 on New York-based ska label Moon Records. Two years later, they followed it up with Scientific on BYO Records. In 1998, after signing with Epitaph Records subsidiary HellCat Records, they released Right on Time, scoring a modest hit with the swinging “No Worries” and scored a spot on the Vans Warped Tour. 2000 saw the release of Push n’ Shove, their first album without founding members Raul Talavera and Alex Désert, although the latter appears as a guest vocalist on two tracks.
The band went on a short hiatus after 2000, then reunited in March 2003, bringing back members of the “Scientific” lineup, sans alto sax Raul Talavera.
In early 2004, a remastered version of Out of Nowhere was released with two additional bonus tracks—an early version of “Nigel” and “Club Meditation”—both of which appeared on their first single.
Hepcat has since continued to play occasionally, with most appearances close to their home in Los Angeles. New songs have been written since their reunion, and an album is in the works.
On September 22, 2007, it was reported via the band’s MySpace profile and corresponding blog that long-time bassist David Fuentes had died. No details were given, and as such, the band has taken to grieving the loss.[1]
A few members of Hepcat have also participated in other endeavors. Trumpeter Kincaid Smith formed Soul Traffic, a five-piece funk band. Drummer Scott Abels has played with the Rancid side project Lars Frederiksen and the Bastards and the southern California reggae act The Aggrolites. Vocalist Alex Desert has had a successful career in film and television, appearing in the movies PCU, Swingers, and High Fidelity; and the television shows Boy Meets World and Becker.
The term “Hepcat” originates from an early slang term (1930–35) pertaining to an admirer or devotee of jazz, esp. swing, or one that was “hep”, or a hipster. The band is actually named after a cat once owned by vocalist Alex Desért, named “Hep.”
[edit]Discography

Out of Nowhere (1993), Moon Ska Records
Scientific (1996), BYO Records
Right on Time (1998), Hellcat Records
Push ‘n Shove (2000), Hellcat Records
Out of Nowhere (Hellcat re-release with two bonus tracks) (2004)
Live at The Whiskey a Go-Go (2011), Whatevski Records