themusicologist #0768

Renewal #3

Everton Blender – Dem Fight I

Around 1993 themusicologist was once again focused on the sounds coming out of Jam Down after a 5-6 year sabbatical spent soaking up the sounds of London, Chi’, The Motor City, NYC and Europa.

For me the years between 1992 – 1998 were a ‘golden age’ for the Reggae. SO many top drawer, conscious, deep cuts emerged with the new wave of ‘computerised’.

Not that Jamaica didn’t embrace the ‘digital’ many years before. Everyone who knows can point to cuts [especially those from the hands of the mighty Prince Jammy] that tore up the dance a decade before but the 90’s cuts coming out of labels like exterminator, penthouse, harmony house, Digital B, How Yuh Fi Say That and MANY more one and two shot labels drew not only on the global musical landscape but also and MOST importantly the ‘democratisation’ of music production that had emerged.

Some MASSIVE works were waxed during them years and themusicologist was on them cuts like a rash back then. Consuming box after box after box, week after week, month after month, year after year.

A Few cuts on this Rhythm. This is one of my favourites. Reminds me of them days.




musicology #431

butterfly mind #1

(Delroy Wilson – Keep On Trying)

Over the last few days/weeks/months..maybe even years !! I have been doing a LOT of, (maybe too much?), thinking and subsequently find myself a bit lost as I wander through a maze of internal dialogue that seems to do nothing but ask questions.

The butterfly mind has that capacity, mesmerising to observe as it flutters from one place to another but a hard road to travel and extremely distracting. I don’t know whether ‘the road’ leads anywhere particular as, for me, it tends to be the journey more than the destination but responsibility both for self and others, (children), is a great leveller and something I take VERY seriously so it feels like I’ll have to turn my gaze from the butterfly and focus instead on building “a heaven on the earth”

as for themusicologist, I have spent too much energy searching for cuts that expressed my deepest feelings which has bottlenecked the flow of music. so from now my intention is to set the music free from the bondage of too much meaning and just try to lay down one slice a day that I feel like sharing. It will continue to be the soundtrack to my life but with a little more freedom.

first up…one from Delro’ (Wilson), Jamaican musicologist and sweet soul singer whose career stretches way back to the early sixties when he cut his recording teeth in 1963 at the tender age of 15, hooking up to Sir Coxsone, Downbeat the Ruler Dodd’s Studio 1. big 10 inch from the 1970’s on one of Coxsone’s many labels, (music lab).

musicology #71

newyearboogie #3 (Johnny Clarke – Age Is Growing)

been involved in a lot of interesting debates over the last few weeks one of which concerned themusicologist and how it was/is evolving…..

allow me to elucidate…the early posts, (musicology #1-7), were raw, intense, deeply personal and provided a much needed outlet for expressing how it felt to be, once again, staring into the abyss and as music has always provided themusicologist with a most effective outlet for emotional expression the musical diary was born.

but when you find yourself on the ‘hill and gully ride’ as sure as day follows night, up follows down. and the next stage of evolution took themusicologist on a journey from down low to up high which just goes to show that “joy and pain are like sunshine and rain”

without getting too philosophical I suppose this could be seen as striking the eternal balance..or to put it another way the polarisation of extremity…hmmmm.

don’t get me wrong, ‘hill and gully’ has a lot going for it but, as I’m sure you will agree, it’s a hard road to travel and has just as many, if not more, pitfalls associated with it than ‘slow and steady’.

it’s like riding a wave, sometimes you can stick to it like glue and you feel invincible and nothing or no-one can stop you. other times the wave comes crashing down and it’s immediate wipe out …. but I suppose if you ride like lightning, stands to reason that you’re more likely to crash like thunder.

in a sentance, themusicologist is a soundtrack to an existence…and as the only thing constant in life is change so the message is always changing but, there is always a message there.

so, with that ‘off me string vest’ back to newyearboogie…

this piece, sung from the heart and mind of roots and culture legend Mr Johnny Clarke, is from the very special and life changing year of 1995 when it appeared as if by magic on the occasion of my first born child ..

“man don’t run around every day wasting time, man don’t sit around every day, watching the days go by…just think of the youts cos there’s a lot to be done” …

true enough it kicked themusicologist up the arse back then so what better way to confirm and reiterate the direction of 2008 than with this prime slice of musicology. Winston ‘Niney’ Holness production on his own Observer label. proof, if needed, that music will always be there to deliver inspiration.