Burning Spear x EB Reggae

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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby Uncle Chig E » Fri Mar 02, 2012 4:01 am

I saw some Wailers and Aswad mixed in with African hip hop bootleg cds at the Muea Market near Buea, Cameroon. No Spear. Folks can do a good job of making fake money. Album art shouldn't be much harder with today's availabe tools. I missed the earlier thread about some Clocktower/Abraham lps. I have a couple I bought in Seattle. Good to know information.
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby Ernie B » Fri Mar 02, 2012 7:47 am

i have a great idea. why not send me 1 of every item in stock and i'll check them all out for any signs of bootlegging, on a no return basis of course


Great idea but then your $1,000 gift card would be useless since you'd have everything already. Keep thinking...

Thank you for the laugh I can use it!
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby Ernie B » Fri Mar 02, 2012 7:56 am

http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/-Spear--jabs-at-distributor_10928189

Some misquotes I'd like to point out from the above referenced article:

On another website http://www.clintonlindsay.com, Ernie B disputed Spear's allegations. He said during the 19 years he has conducted business with the Grammy winner, he has never seen an illegal copy of Spear's music pass through his warehouse.


I never said I've conducted business with Burning Spear for 19 years.. Also, I did not respond on the website http://www.clintonlindsay.com. That website partially copied the quoted from another website.


"We continue to hold a deep respect for Spear's legendary works and hope that they will decide to start".


They truncated the last four words of the sentence! The sentence should read:
"We continue to hold a deep respect for Spear's legendary works and hope that they will decide to start selling the music again".


Many leading Jamaican artistes and producers have distribution deals with the company.


We don't have "distribution deals". We simply ring up an artist, producer or label and ask them to ship "X number" of records and then we pay them. Contracts are not needed. I guess you could say we have verbal deals; simply stated it would be "you ship the records, we send you the money."


He is just one of many Jamaican artistes who have had knotty issues over royalties with record companies.


True however it should be noted that their claim is not for royalties due from Ernie B (we have nothing to do with royalties; we're a reseller not a manufacturer). The claim is outright counterfeiting, which would be a criminal matter (royalty disputes are civil matters).
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby Chaz » Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:05 am

Another good example came to my attention today. If you look at Daddy Kool Records website (a USA store, unrelated to Daddy Kool in England) you will find the CD Chezidek - Sly & Robbie Presents I Grade. The listing shows that label is ERNIE B! This item has nothing to do with us.


A while back I bought a CD on Amazon on the RAS label and they showed the label as being Ernie B too! I wonder if this situation has fed into the misunderstanding Ernie?
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby Ernie B » Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:29 am

A while back I bought a CD on Amazon on the RAS label and they showed the label as being Ernie B too! I wonder if this situation has fed into the misunderstanding Ernie?


The basis for typical misunderstandings are usually far less "deep". Not speaking about any artist in particular, but there are some artists that are contentious and the misunderstandings basically go like this:
Artist: How many did you sell?
EB: 100 copies
Artist: What? My records sell off in one day! I sell 100 copies at every show myself!
EB: Mail-order sales are far different than at shows. Some CD's sell mail-order, some at shows, some both, some neither. I have CD's by bands that sell 2 copies per year on the website but the band sells 50 copies at every show.
Artist: You must have sold 100,000 copies, I see your website all over the world!
EB: Yes the website can be accessed from everywhere and we do have customers in practically every country. However our company sells a moderate quantity of a a lot of titles, not a lot of copies of a few titles.
Artist: Every record store I call says they already bought some from EB so they don't need any from me now!
EB: Maybe they bought some, maybe they didn't. That might be their way of telling you that they don't want to buy your CD from you because they don't think they can sell any.
Artist: What? My records sell off in one day!
EB: I am sorry, we are going in circles. I told you how many I sold and there's no point in trying to explain it further.
Artist now gets angry and the conversation ends, with the artist suspecting that we sold 100,000 copies (the 100 that we bought from them, plus 99,900 more that we manufactured).

Luckily we see this mindset in less than 1% of the artists (or producers) that we buy from. In every "dispute" of this nature the common denominator is that they are always very, very short on specific facts or data. It's usually a general feeling that their records sell "millions" and we must be lying. Thankfully this line of thought is not common.
Last edited by Ernie B on Fri Mar 02, 2012 10:44 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby David » Fri Mar 02, 2012 5:19 pm

I've just been to jamaica once, but I assume it isnt too easy to deal with jamaicans if ..... lets say you have a common north european or american mentality. I dont intend this as a racist statement, but with very different cultural backgrounds you easily end up with missunderstandings.
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby Ernie B » Fri Mar 02, 2012 11:07 pm

but I assume it isnt too easy to deal with jamaicans if ...


I have to politely disagree. The overwhelming majority of the dealings I've had are very positive and trouble-free. My estimation is that about 90% of the artists/producers/labels we have dealt with will give EB a glowing review and are genuinely thankful for the business. Perhaps 9% don't really care one way or another, they have bigger fish to fry so they are indifferent about selling records and therefor (understandably) they don't place a lot of value in having us sell their records. About 1% (or less) can not be pleased no matter what you do. If they owe you $1,000, they will turn that around into you owing them $2,000. I know of one producer who licensed records to an acquaintance of mine, and this producer runs around claiming they never got a single dollar however I know that they were paid over $50,000! So there you have it, I'd say 90% love us and treat us like gold, the rest are indifferent and then you have that 1% that is found in all walks of life.

I was recently in a record store in Long Beach, a small used record shop. I didn't expect to see any reggae. I walk in and the first thing I see is a stack of 80's 12" (Firehouse, Power House, etc.). Holy cow what's the deal?! They had just bought about 4,000 12" reggae from an auction from a storage facility (I guess someone didn't pay their storage bill). So I am plowing through records with 3 other customers, all reggae vinyl bloodhounds, and a guy says to another "hey Ernie look what I found", I look up and another guy answers (his name was Ernie too). I said "my name is Ernie too, I bet we're the only two Ernie's around here who are this deep into reggae". He said "No man, I know a guy Ernie B and that's where I get ALL MY STUFF FROM!!" The other two customers said "hell yes that's the place, Ernie B knows his stuff!". I laughed and said "I am Ernie B" and we shook hands. All three were longtime customers. One was the drummer for Shinehead. He gets Shinehead on the phone and says "you won't believe who is in the store, it's ERNIE B man!" So he hands me the cell phone and me and Shinehead talk for 20 minutes. He was so polite, humble and excited. I was awestruck. He actually wanted to speak to me, which I could not fathom!! So I basked in my 15 minutes of fame, picked through the rest of the records, spent $700 on some unreal 12", and later reflected that it's nice to know that many artist (and customers) hold my company in this high regard. So when I run into that 1% element I always tell myself that the 90% have them vastly outnumbered.

By the way, Shinehead has a way with words that you would not believe. I didn't want to talk at all, because I was feeding off of his witticisms and one-liners on the phone. I wish I could remember them. One of them was "Yo Ernie B, I stopped smoking and I am riding my bike 40 miles a day, blowing out the carburetor and clearing my head. My new CD is a blasted bullseye. These other guys can't hit the broadside of the lyrical barn!" It was like that for 20 minutes straight on the phone. This guy has some amazing talent and charisma. So there's the encounter with the 90%. It more than makes up for the 1%.
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby solomonic » Sat Mar 03, 2012 4:18 pm

this has been an interesting read and reasoning to say the least.

hard one to wrap my head around because Spear seems like one of the most level headed old time artist.. Same time EB has always been nothing but professional from times when I was just ordering personally or when we ordered wholesale for our online store back in the day (recordkingdom.com if u remember us ernie)...

I am not sure how this situation with copyright expiration that kicks in next year will affect all of this... check this article for one side of the story: http://gizmodo.com/5889748/why-mastered ... -time-bomb

i first heard about this copyright thing @ a year ago and saw it as a potential way that these old artists could regain control over their works that are in the limbo state now... perhaps ernie since it will affect you potentially anyway in regards to sales, it might be good to figure out how the artists could benefit from this and you could help to establish a new method for them to claim rights... knowing that most of these artists don't know much about the actual legal side anyway, maybe if you can help them out it will at least counter the misunderstandings that exist.

i don't know, just a thought I had. that said, i am not sure I would want to be the poster child of who helped take forward the rights of all these artists that had been swindled for 40 yrs... having hard time dealing with artists? been there. fighting against billionaire money men with zero morals? ummm wouldn't really want to face that battle myself honestly :)

anyways prayers that somehow this all work out for good. i wish that all this energy and time could go to spreading reggae music to a more people... somehow i feel like the rulers of darkness in high and low places are sitting back and laughing at the situation...
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby kingj » Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:31 pm

Hey Ernie
I have dealt with you from the very start - we traded record after record....Consider me high in that 90% range you speak of. Always great product, super service- unbeatable really, just an all around pleasure , period. By the way if I see something reissued , I basically only get them through you - if you dont have it, its worth the wait.
Don't stop what you are doing , and most of all , dont let ANYONE tear you down. Lot of sick people in the world you know, and nothing we can do about it.
PS Im in CT Ernie- I still have lists of yours from 94!!
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby jah_vaults » Tue Mar 06, 2012 1:55 am

solomonic wrote:this has been an interesting read and reasoning to say the least.


This situation resolved yet or is it going to court?
CLICK THE LINK TO BUY more items NOW ADDED. Ska, Studio one, Rocksteady, Coxsone, Lee Perry, Treasure Isle, Dancehall, Digital, Dub, Roots Reggae & Ragga C.D.s & Vinyl http://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/jah_vaults/m. ... 4340.l2562
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby lightningclap » Wed Mar 07, 2012 7:53 pm

I've been following this with some interest, thanks to EB for contributing. A little off-topic, but I have always thought Shinehead was one of the greatest MCs ever in reggae OR hip hop. The last time played here a few years back to a tiny crowd, I didn't bother to chat him up, but he is a brilliant rapper, gifted mimic of other singers and MCs and like a human sampler, throwing out lines of movie dialog, etc. I'd like to see some of those BS pop rappers do what Shine has been doing for YEARS. Respect!
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby alonsoreggae » Thu Aug 09, 2012 7:02 am

What a cool thread with such cool stories! I was one of the people that followed BS on this matter, without knowing the facts.

I bought a few vinyls from Ernie B a few years ago and had no problem with them.
I'm sure lots of people on this forum could tell specific names of artists (the 1 %) that constantly do what Mr. Rodney is doing now, not only to Ernie, but like he said,to a lot of other distributors. It would be so hard to calculate how much of BS material is actually bootlegged and sold on the streets around the world. I can say from personal experience that in South America the bootleg biz is so big it never ends, and it includes musicians of all genres. That "million" number BS is thinking of reflects on what he sees on the net (social media) and how he conducts his business. Poor MR Rodney, his traditional way of thinking is sinking him in his own pool and halting the hopes of his eager fans. But I, now, completely agree with Ernie B and defend him 100%, I get it, you are just a reseller, as simple as that.

PS: BS just asked his fans to boycott Trojan...
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby blakbeltjonez » Thu Aug 09, 2012 1:26 pm

Ernie B wrote:http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/-Spear--jabs-at-distributor_10928189

Some misquotes I'd like to point out from the above referenced article:


that's the Observer for you ...... inaccuracies are a regular thing with them.
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Re: Burning Spear x EB Reggae

Postby i M@N » Mon Aug 27, 2012 9:47 am

Ernie B talks about the conflict with Burning Spear in an interview with united reggae :
http://unitedreggae.com/articles/n1038/ ... ew-ernie-b
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