Smugg Records

 Various Artists - Ready When You Ready - Smugg Records - 2 CD

The early eighties 'Dancehall' era was the last time that the studio bands of Jamaica ruled. In this case it sounds like the High Times Band and the Youth Promotion players. What was different about this era was that the singers and dj's on this set sung over rhythms (although by all accounts Studio One was using this technique in the sixties). The talent on this set were all very good at putting new lyrics to old rhythms.

Featured over the 24 tracks on this excellent two cd set, are the likes of Tenor Saw with 'Golden Hen' a big hit for the late and great youth. Nitty Gritty 'Duppy Come Again' once again a much missed talent who always had something to say. Junior Reid 'Original Foreign Mind' was another mega hit and rightly so for the Firehouse youth. Sugar Minott busts outs with 'All Kinda People' on Disc 2. Which also contains great songs from the late great Freddy McKay 'Someone Is Watching You' an all digital tune and the xtra talented Willy Williams with 'Natty Natty' .

Various Artists - Ready When You Ready Two - Smugg Records - CD

More eighties Dancehall runnings bringing together productions from Youth Promotion including Tenor Saw, Barry Brown, Trevor Junior, and Junior Reid. As well as productions from King Tubby - Gregory Isaacs - the fantastic 'Warning' taken from the album of the same name. Other great tunes on this 19 track set include Jack Wilson aka Jack Radics 'Six Street'. Alton Ellis 'Lonely' and a great reality tune from Frankie Paul 'Who Issue The Gun' the only thing missing from this CD - and all of them is production credits!

Various Artists - Ready When You Ready 3 - Smugg Records - CD

After the eigthies ragga scene, came the digital roots era of the nineties. Man like Garnett Silk and Luciano had the hits and got the credit - but others were always working away in this field. The late and much missed Devon Russell was one teaming up with the Firehouse Crew - the two tunes here sound like they could have come from sessions with the band. Other great singers found on this excellent 19 track set include the outspoken Admiral Tebbit with 'Live The Life' Candyman - with 'Hungryman' and Echo Minott with 'Sharpshooter'. The set is not all roots though - and so you find great tunes from Dennis Brown, Cornell Campbell and Alton Ellis and Sugar Minott.

Various Artists - Triple Dons 1 - Smugg Records - CD

Was never that keen on the two artist concept album, with the arrival of the CD - it was expected to reappear - but thankfully its not, perhaps due to a glut of various artists set. This 3 artist set is something of a bit of both. Some really good tracks from all there artists - but it needs some kind of theme to make sense. If they all came from the same producer or the same time - or were all unreleased - anything. Having said that, some great tunes from all three artists and they are of course All Dons. And have been for many many years.