It Never Occurred To Me

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It Never Occurred To Me

Postby Ranking Glasses » Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:40 pm

As a youngster I really enjoyed listening to the DJs from the 70's like Big Youth, U Roy, Dennis Alcapone, Tappa Zukie, I Roy, Dillinger, Trinity, etc. I loved the music and the fact that my parents hated the whole thing! I suppose it was our little rebellion and act of defiance, skanking around the living room to "rasta" music.

However, I read an article on the internet recently (which I subsequently lost) which talked about several of the musicians being opposed to DJ music because the DJs were achieving great success by re-using rhythm tracks so the musicians were not getting paid. It never occurred to me that deejaying caused such animosity.
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby Well Charge » Tue Oct 29, 2013 8:23 am

I was born in 1980, and started listening to 60s and 70s reggae when i was about 18. I never got into the early dj's, i can't get how people can listen to it, frankly. In the late 70s the style became exciting as it became more 'hiphop'-like. But U Roy, Big Youth, Dillinger, just bore me...
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby Ranking Glasses » Tue Oct 29, 2013 9:11 am

It was question of the time and the context. It was revolutionary and rebellious at the time for these DJs to stand proud and chant about Rastafari and social or topical issues. For my parents generation with their Christian background and clean cut image, someone like Big Youth was shocking to them. For this reason and the fantastic rhythms it caught on big time with the DJ cuts outselling the original vocals in some cases.

Yes, of course when we listen to this music in hindsight some of it seems brilliant and some mediocre because it has been taken out of its timeframe and compared to modern music which has been subject to advances in technology and styles.
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby informer » Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:38 am

Well Charge wrote:I was born in 1980, and started listening to 60s and 70s reggae when i was about 18. I never got into the early dj's, i can't get how people can listen to it, frankly. In the late 70s the style became exciting as it became more 'hiphop'-like. But U Roy, Big Youth, Dillinger, just bore me...



i see (hear) it the other way round:
i love the riddims and the toasting of dennis alcapone, i roy, u roy, big youth etc.
people like yellowman and all that followed after him bore me to the max. same applies to the riddims.
'the one who cleans the s.h.i.t must remember it' (Lee Perry)
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby Ranking Glasses » Tue Oct 29, 2013 11:12 am

They say that the proof of the pudding is in the eating and if the proof of the tune is in the playing, I play the 1970's stuff much more than the 80's stuff. I agree that the rhythms were better overall and I like the spontaneous style. There was overkill in the 80's and hundreds of tunes on the same rhythm, e.g. I have loads of records on the "Bam Bam" rhythm. It does get a bit boring.
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby jesperoots » Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:06 pm

Interesting points. I´ve had the same issue with old style DJs, as borned in the 70´s and listend to this music retrospective. With that said, I still enjoy many DJ tunes, but the singers definately outnumbers them.

I think Ranking is spot on when talking about the context in time these recordings occured. When something is new its more exciting.

In the same way, I´ve always been puzzled about the iconic status of Mighty Diamonds Right time album when Kool Roots by Earth & Stone is so much better. Both sometimes mentioned as examples of the rockers drumming of the period. But then I realized the Mighty Diamonds album came first, of course the drumming didnt sound as exciting and fresh 2 years later.

I guess you never get the full picture of a records impact unless you were there and then.
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby guillaumebougard » Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:19 pm

I agree with Well Charge, although U Roy on the microphone is something to behold. Enough for me to produce two albums with him.

I have 99% singing albums and 1% DJ's. I dont need much more than a couple URoy's one I Roy which I never listen to, the Blood & Fire Big Youth compilation which I'm proud to own but which I never listen to, a couple Yellowman, a Shabba, Moods of Moses by Beenie Man, Til Shiloh, and a few Ninjaman, Bounty Killa. All in all, I have maybe 30 DJ albums out of 3000. Out of these 3,000 I listen to maybe 50 on a regular basis. Pathetic use of my shelve space if you ask me...
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby MulatuAstatke » Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:33 pm

I Roy - Crisus Time

That's all that needs to be said.. can listen to that album over n over
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby capullo » Tue Oct 29, 2013 5:14 pm

i really like dj music but i know it can be boring or annoying. i always adored big youth - also u roy, i roy and many others - his voice and power is something else. not so fond of big youth singing though.
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby Ital Dokta » Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:04 pm

I think context is the key here, both in terms of social/societal impact (it was new, rebellious etc.) as indicated above but also musically. In the context of a 12" record for example a good bit of dj chat with some nice timing & delivery can really take a tune to a whole different level, the same dj tune excised for inclusion on an LP may fall flat when listening to a whole album of much the same stuff. Remember this music was meant to be listened to in a smoky, crowded dance session, not your living room some 30 or 40 years after the fact...so you kind of have to listen in a certain context as well.

Never heard of musicians resenting the dj's before though I could sort of see looking down on someone just stepping up to the mic and chatting off the top of their heads when many of the musicians had to work to learn their craft and earn their bread. Though the producers would ultimately be the guilty ones, re-using and recycling riddims, making dub versions etc. to cut down on musicians and studio costs.
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby Ranking Glasses » Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:59 pm

Words of wisdom Ital Doctor.

I have amassed quite a collection of "Disco 45s", i.e. 12" singles with the vocal at the beginning and the deejaying at the end after an elaborate echo fade out. Joe Gibbs / Errol Thompson were masters of this genre but of course there were many others too. On a roots tip, "Hard Times" by Pablo Gad is probably the best example imo. People used to literally go wild in dances / parties when the DJ piece came on, "Say when I was a yout' I used to bun collie weed inna Rizla, but now I turn a man me just a bun collie weed inna chalwa."
Last edited by Ranking Glasses on Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby Ranking Glasses » Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:59 pm

:)
Last edited by Ranking Glasses on Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby Ranking Glasses » Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:00 pm

:) :)
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby Ital Dokta » Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:30 pm

Perfect example Ranking G.

That lyric from Hard Times has to be one of, if not the greatest dj opening lines in a discomix single. Rough tune already but how much better it is with the deejaying, and those lyrics are the ones everyone remembers. The Joe Gibbs/Errol T 12's often have some great mixing and transitions from vocal to deejay to version...often the dj portion can redeem some of the more saccharine or bland vocal outings. Though in most cases the dj's are not saying much other than stringing some catchphrases together to fit the rhythm, there can sometimes be a pointed lyric or bit of social commentary but more often it is a case of not what they say but how they say it. I was listening to an original Joe Gibbs 12" of Jacob Miller - Keep On Knocking just the other day and was blown away by the deep, loud and vibrant sound quality and the deejaying actually does add a little something extra to the record, chatting nursery rhyme lyrics yet!
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Re: It Never Occurred To Me

Postby steve rice » Wed Oct 30, 2013 7:31 am

Early deejays wee the most exciting for me as they occurred when i was into reggae already and as a teenager it was fresh and exciting..U Roy's "true true" and Dennis Alcapones "Mosquito one" were absolute knockout tunes at a dance or party..I Roy became my favourite for a long time because he was so clever and the music took another turn as it went "heavy"..I've got quite a few deejay tunes on 45 but i don't use them that often..a crowd can tire of them quickly..besides a live mic man is much better.
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