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SOUL JAZZ

Various Artists

Soul Jazz Records Presents ‘Bunny Lee: Dreads Enter The Gates With Praise’

    Soul Jazz Records presents this new collection featuring the heavy 70s roots reggae of Bunny Lee - a living legend, one of the last of the great Jamaican record producers who helped shape and define reggae music in the 1970s from a small island sound into an internationally successful musical genre.

    From teenage fan to young record plugger for Duke Reid, Sir Coxsone and other early pioneering Jamaican musical entrepreneurs, Lee has spent his whole professional life inside the Kingston music industry. In the 1970s he rose up to become one of the major record producers in Jamaica alongside Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry and the other ‘small axe’ producers who broke the dominance of the ‘big tree’ producers that had ruled Jamaican music in the 1960s.

    Featuring some of the heaviest Jamaican artists, including Johnny Clarke, King Tubby, Dillinger, Prince Jazzbo, Tommy McCook, The legendary Aggrovators (featuring Sly and Robbie), The Mighty Diamonds and more, the album is a rollercoaster ride of rare, deep and classic 1970s roots, dub and DJ sounds.

    During this era, ‘flying cymbals’, crashing reverbs, dark echoing thunderclap gunshots and other ‘implements of sound’ filled his record productions as Bunny Lee explored the outer limits of dub with his friend King Tubby in the mix on wild versions that accompanied any 45. A Bunny Lee record provides a creative and mysterious hidden guide to reggae music itself, a double-sided three-minute intangible history lesson etched in wax.

    Bunny Lee was one of the first Jamaican producers to travel to England in the late 1960s, at the beginning of the nascent British reggae music industry as record companies such as Trojan, Pama and others began licensing Jamaican music in the UK to supply the expanding West Indian communities living up and down England. Lee encouraged other Jamaican producers to do the same, including Lee Perry, Harry J and Niney The Observer and also became a conduit between the British music industry and numerous younger Island-based producers - a frequent flyer reggae ambassador, a musical courier exchanging tapes for royalties.

    Bunny Lee’s first recordings in the late 1960s were mainly rock steady but as the 70s approached the music soon began to mutate and slow down into ‘reggae’ as the sound became heavier, more rootsy and the sound itself began to change with the explosion of dub.

    Lee was at the forefront to this dramatic musical shift into roots reggae and by this time had become a major producer, capable of working with whoever he chose as world-famous singers, DJs and musicians lined up to work with the charismatic man. Lee also employed a fluid but stable set of crack session musicians who he named The Aggrovators.

    Most of the recordings featured here come from the mid 70s, a time when Bunny Lee was definitely in the zone, releasing heavyweight singles at an almost unstoppable rate. Bunny Lee’s career stretches over five decades and he has upwards of 2,000 production credits on vinyl.

    This album comes with extensive sleevenotes, an interview with Bunny Lee and exclusive photography.

    Eddie Russ was an important figure to emerge from the vibrant underground jazz scene that thrived in Detroit in the early 1970s, existing in the cultural and economic desolation of the city after the departure of Motown in the late 1960s. This scene included the musical collective Tribe (including members Wendell Harrison, Marcus Belgrave, Phil Ranelin, Harold McKinney and Doug Hammond) and Kenny Cox’s Strata Records. Eddie Russ’s ‘Fresh Out’ was first released in 1974 on the independent Jazz Masters record label. As well as including the classic jazz dance cut ‘The Lope Song’, Eddie Russ’s ‘Fresh Out’ featured the debut of the group The Mixed Bag who subsequently recorded for both Tribe and Strata Records.

    As a radical jazz artist, Steve Reid played with an extraordinary group of artists - Miles Davis, Sun Ra, Fela Kuti, James Brown, Ornette Coleman, Lester Bowie and many more. He began his career as a teenager in the 1960s as a drummer at Motown. Reid was born in the South Bronx and grew up in Queens, New York, three blocks away from John Coltrane.

    In 1969, Reid refused to enlist to the Vietnam war and was arrested as a conscientious objector and given a four-year prison sentence. On his release in 1974, he formed the Legendary Master Brotherhood and the independent record label, Mustevic Sound, to release his debut LP ‘Nova’.

    At the start of the 21st Century, Steve Reid began a successful collaboration with Kieran Hebden (Four Tet), who Reid referred to as his “musical soul mate,” resulting in a number of joint albums. Steve Reid died in New York in 2010. Subsequently, the Steve Reid Foundation was set up in his name, to help aspiring musicians and artists.

    This is the latest installment of Soul Jazz Records’ on-going collection of Rastafarian music at Studio One, featuring classic material from legendary roots and culture artists The Gladiators, Horace Andy, Freddie McGregor, Sugar Minott and the Wailing Souls, alongside a superb selection of rarities from Sir Coxsone’s musical empire made up of one-off and practically unknown Rastafarian artists who recorded on myriad Studio One off-shoot labels in the 1970s - The Manchesters, Mellodies, The Nightingales and others.

    In this new collection, we see that once again the prescient Clement Dodd was a man who saw the wider picture. In the 1960s it was Sir Coxsone who identified the creative potential of The Wailers, Toots and the Maytals, Heptones, Burning Spear and many, many others. In the 1970s Studio One released an untouchable selection of the finest as styles moved from reggae to deejay to dub and, in the latter half, the emergence of dancehall.

    What is also clear is that throughout this era Studio One released an incredible amount of roots music and not just the most commercially obvious. For alongside the career-building catalogues of Burning Spear, The Wailing Souls, The Gladiators and so on, one needs to be an ardent Studio One collector to know some of the truly raw Rastafarian music featured here. Groups such as The Manchesters or The Nightingales feel as if they were recorded straight out of the churchical chants of the mansions.

    Black Man’s Pride explains the links between the ideology of Clement Dodd at Studio One and the Rastafarian faith, which was the creation of Afro-Jamaicans and concerned above all else with a black consciousness and empowerment, a rediscovering of the personal and racial identity of black people. The movement began in the 1930s and, in tandem with this black consciousness, called for a rejection of the British imperial culture that dominated Jamaica, while creating an identity based on a re-appropriation of an African heritage.

    The Rastafari movement was like a pivot, bringing together and balancing many vectors of ideologies. Marcus Garvey’s Back to Africa movement, trades union discourse, anti-colonialism and nation independence, maroon self-definition and independence, the spirit of African rebellion in the Caribbean. For Clement Dodd, a black man and producer growing up in Kingston in this era, Rastafari was simply a part of his everyday world - from witnessing Count Ossie’s grounations to the faith of many Jamaican artists at Studio One - from the Skatalites onwards.

    Featured here alongside these classic and rare tracks from Studio One are new and extensive sleeve notes with track-by-track notes by Rob Chapman, author of the acclaimed Downbeat Special and Never Grow Old Studio One books.

    Various Artists

    Soul Jazz Records Presents Soul Of A Nation: Jazz Is The Teacher, Funk Is The Preacher

      ‘Soul Of A Nation: Jazz Is The Teacher, Funk Is The Preacher’ is a powerful new collection of radical jazz, street funk and proto-rap made in the era of Black Power (1969-75).

      This is the second ‘Soul Of A Nation’ album released by Soul Jazz Records to coincide with the exhibition ‘Soul Of A Nation - Art In The Age Of Black Power’, critically acclaimed and enormously successful when it opened at the Tate Modern in London last year (as was Soul Jazz Records’ accompanying first album ‘Soul Of A Nation: Afro-Centric Visions In The Age Of Black Power 1968- 79’). The blockbuster international exhibition is now at the Brooklyn Museum, New York, travelling to Los Angeles in 2019.

      This new album features a number of important and ground-breaking African-American artists - The Art Ensemble Of Chicago, Don Cherry, Funkadelic, Gil Scott-Heron and more - alongside a host of lesser-known artists all of whom in the early 1970s were exploring new Afrocentric poly-rhythmical styles of music - radical jazz, street funk and proto-rap - while at the same time exploring the Black Power and civil-rights inspired notions of self-definition, self-respect and self-empowerment in their own lives.

      During this era African-American jazz musicians ripped up traditional definitions - rejecting the term ‘entertainer’ to redefine themselves instead as ‘artists’. They worked outside of the mainstream music industry perceiving this artistic relationship to be fundamentally exploitative and politically flawed. Artists instead formed their own pan-arts community-centric collectives, set up their own record labels, ran concerts in alternative performance spaces - art galleries, parks, lofts, community centres - all as a way of taking control of their own creative destinies.

      At the start of 1960s jazz musicians had embarked on an intense period of musical experimentation as artists John Coltrane, Ornette Coleman and Don Cherry sought to dismantle the traditional definitions of jazz by creating new music that broke free from its establishment shackles. By the end of the 1960s, forward-thinking African-American jazz musicians had absorbed the ideas of this radical and avant-garde path but also began to introduce many new elements - not just civil rights concepts of freedom but also black power ideas of self-respect, righteousness and anger.

      Their music developed into a radical and intense Afrocentric mix of jazz, funk, soul and street poetry, all in search of a new musical language that could better represent artistic African-American cultural expression.

      All of the featured artists here were involved in this search in different ways; A shared sense of Afrocentric collectivism joined the dots between the deep avant-garde experimentalism of The Art Ensemble Of Chicago (here featuring soul singer Fontella Bass singing the powerful ‘Theme de Yoyo’) to the hyper funk psychedelia of George Clinton’s Funkadelic.

      The poetry of Gil Scott-Heron and Sarah Webster Fabio performed with a backdrop of street funk and heavyweight percussion laid down the template for the birth of rap. The Har-You Percussion Group, a group of young Harlem teenagers, showed how government-sponsored social initiatives helped create great art and music. Gary Bartz and The Oneness of Juju offer spirituality and cosmology. Collectives like The Pharaohs and Detroit’s Tribe add deep jazz and street funk in equal measures.

      Influenced and radicalised by Black Power and civil rights, all these artists were involved in creating - in the words of the Art Ensemble Of Chicago - ‘Great Black Music: Ancient To Future’.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      Millie says: This compilation has collected all the best tunes from the funk/soul genre from Gil Scott-Heron to Baby Huey. Spread over three LP's, this is a feast for the ears!

      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Deluxe CD Info: Deluxe CD with slipcase, 40-page outsize booklet and jewel case.

      Brown Sugar

      I’m In Love With A Dreadlocks: Brown Sugar And The Birth Of Lovers Rock 1977-80

      Soul Jazz Records release this first ever collection of the pioneering British reggae Lovers Rock group Brown Sugar including rare singles, dubs and extended mixes. The album comes with extensive sleevenotes and interviews with Dennis Bovell, Pauline Catlin, John Kpiaye and Winston Edwards (Studio 16).

      Brown Sugar were formed by three young teenage girls - Pauline Catlin, Caron Wheeler and Carol Simms in South London in 1976. In the short period of time 1976-1980, the group - working with Dennis Bovell on the mixing desk and John Kpiaye (‘Brownie T) in the studio - recorded barely a handful of singles on the new Lovers Rock label, a number of which went to the top of the UK reggae charts. But success stopped there and with no album release and no industry support the group broke up in the early 1980s.

      Following their split Caron Wheeler became the lead vocalist for the hugely successful group Soul II Soul, Carol Simms launched a solo career as Kofi (re-making a number of Brown Sugar songs with producer Mad Professor) and Pauline Catlin returned to education.

      Despite their relatively low-key mainstream public exposure Brown Sugar (and the label on which their first records appeared) announced to the world a new genre of reggae music, Lovers Rock, which spoke for the first time with the sensibility of a new segment of British society; that of first generation-born Black British female youth.

      And while Lovers Rock became synonymous with sweet love songs, Brown Sugar’s music in fact expressed far more; a righteous pride and consciousness in being Black and British, a political stance more often associated with UK roots groups like Black Slate, Aswad, Misty In Roots and other British reggae acts in the late 1970s. Brown Sugar were in fact their own genre of ‘conscious lovers rock’ - an expression of ideological black cultural pride.

      Brown Sugar’s handful of three-minute love songs (often plus extended dubs) somehow manage to encapsulate all the complexities of identity, sexual politics and youthful righteousness of Afro-Caribbean youth living in Britain in the 1970s. Songs such as ‘I’m In Love With A Dreadlocks’, ‘Our Reggae Music’, ‘Black Pride’ and ‘Dreaming Of Zion’ spoke with a straightforward righteousness and consciousness that few roots groups could hope to match. The fact that they were all teenagers is even more striking.

      Dennis Bovell comments, “For Lovers Rock we needed a pulpit, a way of saying ‘this is the style’. Sound systems were already saying ‘this is lovers,’ brandishing it in the dance. Our intention was to create a style of music that my generation could identify with - one that had a beat, and you could dance to with your partner in a sound system setting.”

      Dennis Bovell’s mixes for the group gave a further dimension to Brown Sugar records - a sound system mentality, adding sound effects and dub elements. ‘I’m In Love With A Dreadlocks’ was the debut release for both Brown Sugar and the Lovers Rock label, a fitting calling card for both. The record was a hit on many sound systems across the UK, reaching the top of the reggae charts.

      Although the career of Brown Sugar was short-lived, their legacy and influence remains significant and now, 40 years on from these first records, all of the members are still involved in music. Pauline Catlin has recently re-launched her career under a new moniker, Shezekiel; Carol Simms, aka Kofi, remains a successful solo artist, one of the queens of Lovers Rock; Caron Wheeler, after leaving Soul II Soul at the end of the 1980s, embarked on a solo career, before re-joining the soul super-group which she continues to front to this day.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      Matt says: Lovers rock was a distinctly UK-JA hybrid, and Brown Sugar were one of the catalysts of this homegrown, offshoot movement and were huge here in Manchester, as well as London & Birmingham.

      Long out of print re-release of this classic Sugar Minott album on Soul Jazz Records, bringing together the best of his classic material recorded at Studio One in the 1970s. Lincoln Sugar Minott was born in Kingston, Jamaica in 1956. He grew up in a poor area of West Kingston and from an early age developed a love of reggae music and the music of Studio One in particular. As a teenager, he became selector for Sound of Silence Keystone and Gathering of Youth local soundsystems. By the late 1970s Minott had risen to become one of the biggest stars in Jamaican music.

      Sugar Minott began his career at Studio One. After auditioning in front of Clement ‘Sir Coxsone’ Dodd in the early 1970s, he became the first artist to record new songs over classic rhythms, singing over original Studio One tapes - the significance of which led directly to the birth of dancehall, as Channel One, Joe Gibbs and hundreds of other Jamaican producers quickly began releasing their own material based on these same classic Studio One rhythms replayed by Sly and Robbie, The Aggrovators, Soul Syndicate, Roots Radics and many others.

      'I knew Studio One spiritually before I knew Studio One physically. You know I grew up beside a dancehall and Sir Coxsone’s sound used to play there from when I was a boy. So from that influence you know I used to love Studio One sound so much, I became a sound selector. So that was my first involvement with getting to know Studio One music like The Heptones, Alton Ellis, Ken Boothe, the whole works and that was my life from a youth.'

      After Sugar Minott’s debut many other artists followed suit at the label such as Freddie McGregor, Johnny Osbourne, Lone Ranger and Michigan & Smiley leading to one of the most creative periods for the label. This is the first retrospective of Sugar Minott at the label and most of these recordings have never been widely available outside Jamaica. Sugar Minott went on to a huge career in reggae and is today one of the biggest stars in Jamaican music. He set up his own Black Roots / Youth Promotions label releasing music by Barry Brown, Michael Palmer, Tenor Saw, Barrington Levy, Horace Andy, Garnett Silk, Junior Delgado, Yami Bolo, Junior Reid and many more.

      Sugar Minott went on to work for numerous Jamaican producers. His "Good Thing Going", produced by Donovan Germain, became a Number One hit in the UK and led to the rise of Lovers Rock. This album includes classic cuts as well as super-rare singles, all of which have been digitally re-mastered for this release.


      This is the second collection of music from Venezuela in the 1970s and beyond to be released on Soul Jazz Records. The album once again features innovative figures in the history of underground Venezuelan music, mostly unknown outside of their home country - their music a blending of progressive rock, jazz, experimental electronics and disco, created mainly in the 1970s - during a time when the country was both a cultural and economic powerhouse in Latin America.

      While much of 1960s Venezuelan rock music emulated British and USA styles and salsa dominated the dancefloors of Latin America, the 1970s saw the evolution of a new generation of creative local artists such as Vytas Brenner, Daniel Grau, Aldemaro Romero, Un Dos Tres Y Fuera who all explored the possibilities of mixing together rock with elements of electronica, funk, jazz, latin rhythms simultaneously exploring their links with Venezuelan roots music, creating a new sound which blended a multitude of new and old world influences, uniquely Venezuelan.

      Most of these artists featured on ‘Venezuela 70’ remain practically unknown outside of Venezuela’s borders and yet their progressive forward-thinking music is some of the most sophisticated in the world - a stunning ‘melting pot’ mix of sounds from the cosmic and psychedelic rock of Vytas Brenner to the Moroder-esque disco experimentation of Daniel Grau and the tropical funk of Un Dos Tres Y Fuera and beyond.

      Aside from the relatively known Vytas Brenner and Daniel Grau, most of the music on this album is incredibly rare (even in Venezuela).

      Art Ensemble Of Chicago

      Les Stances A Sophie

      As the legendary Art Ensemble Of Chicago celebrates its 50th anniversary, Soul Jazz Records release a new, fully re-mastered edition of the group’s seminal 1970 album ‘Les Stances à Sophie’, which features the great singer Fontella Bass on the opening track ‘Theme de Yoyo’, a stunning 9-min opus that continues to startle and compel new audiences today.

      Drawing upon the mutual soul and funk background of Bass and her then husband Lester Bowie with all the power of the Art Ensemble Of Chicago’s collective musicianship on board, ‘Theme de Yoyo’ is powerfully funky, soulful and free at the same time, a classic fusion of black music styles.

      The Art Ensemble explored many areas of popular black music during their career. For instance, their ‘Ancient to the Future: Tribute to the Masters’ album covered songs by artists such as James Brown, Fela Kuti and Jimi Hendrix. This however, remains a pinnacle moment in their exploration of black dance music.

      The Art Ensemble Of Chicago are one of the most important and radical jazz groups to come out of the USA.

      ‘Les Stances à Sophie’ was recorded in Paris in 1970 and features regular Art Ensemble members (Lester Bowie, Joseph Jarman, Roscoe Mitchell and Malachi Flavors) alongside newly recruited drummer Don Moye and guest Fontella Bass on vocals and piano.

      Fontella Bass already had a successful career as a soul singer - ‘Rescue Me’ was her biggest hit in the Sixties. She and Lester Bowie first met in St Louis while working with legendary rhythm and blues producer Oliver Sain. Vocals (and lyrics), alongside a constant drum and bass beat, were new elements to the music of the Art Ensemble at this time.

      Musicians such as Ornette Coleman and John Coltrane spearheaded the free jazz movement at the start of the 1960s. Far from simply defining a musical concept, they also began to redefine the concept of the African-American musician in society. A new period of self-respect and spirituality among musicians paralleled the Civil Rights Movement led by Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, encouraging self-determination and empowerment in every African-American musician.

      The Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) was formed in Chicago in 1965 by Muhal Richard Abrams with members including future Art Ensemble of Chicago members Bowie, Jarman, Mitchell and Flavors, as well as others including Anthony Braxton and Amina Claudine Myers. The AACM explored experimental music and began promoting concerts, teaching music and Black history and offering spiritual guidance to youngsters in the Chicago community.

      Out of this The Art Ensemble was formed in 1968 and in June 1969 the group headed for France. ‘Les Stances á Sophie’ was originally released on EMI France in 1970 and later in the US on Nessa Records. Soul Jazz Records first released the album in 2000. Now ten years out of print, they are releasing it once more in this new fully re-mastered edition.

      ‘Les Stances á Sophie’ came about when Israeli film director Moshe Misrahi befriended the group and asked them to record a soundtrack to a (then unmade) French New Wave film of the same name. During a two-year period in France the group recorded an astonishing amount of music - over fifteen albums recorded for various labels such as BYG, Freedom, Nessa, Arista and EMI - before returning to America in 1971 to continue their journey.

      The Art Ensemble Of Chicago’s musical soundtrack remains perhaps the definitive release from this period, a stunning exploration of radical jazz music and, with with the rare addition of vocalist Fontella Bass on ‘Theme De Yoyo’, an unashamedly powerful celebration of Great Black Music.

      Chris Bowden’s debut album ‘Time Capsule’ was first released on Soul Jazz Records in 1992 to widespread critical acclaim. Now 20 years on a new wave of current jazz artists led by the likes of Kamasi Washington in the USA and a host of British artists - Shabaka Hutchings / Sons of Kemet, The Ezra Collective, Moses Boyd, Nubya Garcia, Fourtet, Yussef Kamaal, Tenderlonious, Binker & Moses - have brought this original ground-breaking album into the limelight once more as a pivotal starting point, sharing many of the aesthetics of these current artists at work today.

      Musically all are inspired by the spiritual jazz of John Coltrane, Alice Coltrane, Pharoah Sanders, Archie Shepp, Don Cherry et al paired with a modern electronic music sensibility. Chris Bowden’s ‘Time Capsule’ has stood the test of time like few other albums (as the title of the album suggested), and remains a pivotal, wholly-successful and original experimental musical collage, a radical inspiration and forbearer to many of the best progressive jazz and electronic artists working today.

      First of two unbelievably rare 1982 West Coast electro-rap 12” singles. Originally released on Raina Records out of Phoenix, Arizona. Vocal and killer dubbed out instrumental arranged and conducted by the legendary Rich Cason.

      An original copy recently sold for over £1000 on Discogs.

      Very limited one-off pressing of 500 copies worldwide on Soul Jazz Records.


      Various Artists

      Soul Jazz Records Presents - Studio One Freedom Sounds: Studio One In The 1960s

      "Studio One Freedom Sounds" is the new collection from the nation's favourite one-stop shop, focusing on the intense period in the second half of the 1960s when Studio One’s vast and unbeatable output of ska, soul, rock steady and reggae made it literally one of the hottest musical empires in the world.

      During this highly successful period, Clement ‘Sir Coxsone’ Dodd released hundreds and hundreds of superlative singles seemingly on an almost daily basis, in the process making huge stars out of Jamaican singers such as Alton Ellis, Delroy Wilson, The Wailers, Slim Smith, Jackie Opel and many more.

      Powered by the finest in-house musicians working in Jamaica, whether it was The Skatalites, Jackie Mittoo’s Soul Brothers, The Sounds Dimension or The Soul Vendors, Studio One functioned as hit factory on the scale of Motown in the USA, shaping and defining reggae music for decades to come.

      Singlehandedly Studio One’s founder Clement Dodd was able to create the most successful vertically-integrated record company that Jamaica had ever known with pressing plant, printers, studio, shops and sound systems all running at once, with over 50 employees and hundreds of artists working with Studio One during this time.

      "Studio One Freedom Sounds" tells the story of Studio One in the 1960s with a stunning set of ska, soul, rock steady and reggae killer tunes as well as informative sleevenotes and track-by-track info by Noel Hawks.


      FORMAT INFORMATION

      2xLP includes MP3 Download Code.

      This is the second installment of deep roots Rastafarian reggae at Studio One and features classic music from some of the most important figures in reggae music - Alton Ellis, The Heptones, Jackie Mittoo, The Gladiators - alongside a host of rarities and little-known recordings, such as a truly rare Mystic Revelation of Rastafari 7” single, Willie William’s first ever recording - ‘Calling’ - and Horace Andy’s righteous (and equally rare) masterpiece ‘Illiteracy.’

      ‘Black Man’s Pride 2’ extends the legacy of Studio One’s groundbreaking path in roots reggae which began at the end of the 1960s and continued throughout the 1970s. The album tells the story of how the rise of Studio One Records and the Rastafari movement were interconnected, through the adoption of the Rastafari faith by key reggae artists - everyone from the Skatalites and Wailers in the 1960s, major singers such as Alton Ellis and Horace Andy at the end of the decade, through to major roots artists such as The Gladiators in the 1970s - and how Clement Dodd consistently recorded this heavyweight roots music throughout Studio One’s history.

      The sleeve-notes to this album also discuss the links between Rastafari and Studio One in time and place, noting how both the religion and Clement Dodd’s musical empire had their roots in the intense period of pre-independence Jamaica in Kingston, expanded in the 1960s following the visit of Haile Selassie in 1966 and how roots music then came to dominate reggae music in the early 1970s. Also discussed is how the outsider stance of both reggae music and the Rastafari movement relate back many hundreds of years to the original rebel stance of the Maroons, escaped slaves who set up self-sufficient enclaves in the hills of the Jamaican countryside. There is also a track-by-track history by the noted Studio One writer Rob Chapman (‘Never Grow Old’).


      This new edition of Soul Jazz Records’ ‘The World Of Arthur Russell’, the seminal collection of Arthur Russell’s essential music, is released on heavy deluxe triple vinyl and deluxe tip-on Japanese style CD edition.
      This album brings together some of Russell’s best-loved and most accessible works including his wide-ranging music, both solo and in groups, including Dinosaur L (the essential ‘Go Bang’), Loose Joints (the equally classic ‘Is It All Over My Face’) as well as rarities such as the 7” only ‘Pop Your Funk’, Indian Ocean’s ‘Schoolbell / Treehouse’, Lola’s ‘Wax The Van’ and more.

      Arthur Russell’s music effortlessly crossed musical boundaries making it timeless. His dance music credentials are faultless and this collection features mixes from Larry Levan, Françcois Kevorkian and Walter Gibbons. Similarly, his songwriting, musicality and performance skills are equally cherished, as composer Philip Glass wrote, “this was a guy who could sit down with a cello and sing with it in a way that no one on earth has ever done before or will do again.”

      When Soul Jazz Records’ ‘The World Of Arthur Russell’ first came out in 2003, Russell’s music had slipped into near obscurity. Nearly 15 years later there are over a dozen releases of his music, reissues of his original albums and more. ‘The World Of Arthur Russell’ is the classic first collection of his work available once more.


      Various Artists

      Boombox 3 - Early Independent Hip Hop, Electro And Disco Rap 1979-83

        Soul Jazz Records’ new ‘Boombox 3’ continues their story of the first rap records to be put onto vinyl. It is a jam-packed collection of original independent old school hip hop, created with just one thing in mind - to get this party jumping.

        After the explosion of hip hop in the parks and clubs of The Bronx in the mid-1970s, it was in Harlem where the first rap records emerged at the end of 1979 - an avalanche of superb rap tracks released on small independent labels all trying to capitalize on the success of ‘Rapper’s Delight’.

        Like hip hop culture itself, these first rap singles are the product of their own unique set of aesthetics - exciting and innovative rap performed with Bronx block party B-Boy funk breaks, disco jams and Jamaican sound system culture.

        The extensive sleevenotes discuss hip hop’s trajectory from the first wave of Bronx creativity - the legendary DJs Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash and Afrika Bambaataa - through to its arrival in Harlem via the entrepreneurism of old-school African-American rhythm and blues producers and émigré Jamaican producers all living in New York. Along the way the notes discuss everything from the New York power blackout of 1977, the Italian mafia involvement in the music industry, the links between rap and Jamaican dancehall and more besides.

        ‘Boombox 3’ features a line-up of stunning, near unknown New York rap artists, classic disco breaks (including Chic’s omnipotent ‘Good Times’, MFSB’s ‘Love Is The Message’, Queen’s ‘Another One Bites The Dust’), proto-electro and more. And by the early 1980s the first rap records outside New York began to emerge - Los Angeles, Houston, Milwaukee, Phoenix - and the first of these are also featured here in this new collection.

        FORMAT INFORMATION

        3xLP Info: Heavyweight triple vinyl (plus download code) with full notes.

        2xCD Info: Double CD pack with 44-page outsize booklet and slipcase.

        Konkere Beats

        Yoruba! Songs & Rhythms For The Yoruba Gods In Nigeria

        Soul Jazz Records’ latest album ‘Yoruba! Songs & Rhythms For The Yoruba Gods In Nigeria’ is newly recorded in Lagos, Nigeria. The album is co-produced by Soul Jazz Records label head Stuart Baker and Laolu Akins (founding member of the legendary 1970s Nigerian Afro-Funk/Rock group Blo).

        ‘Yoruba!’ features an array of local master drummers led by Olatunji Samson Sotimirin and singers (featuring the lead vocals of Janet Olufanmilayo Abe) performing heavyweight Afro-rhythms, with talking drums, Bata and Dundun drums and a mass of percussion in these deep spiritual and sacred songs used to honour and worship the traditional and ancient Yoruba gods in Nigeria, West Africa.

        The enormous impact of Yoruba and West African music and culture is worldwide - from the first Afro-centric explorations of African- American jazz musicians in the 1950s such as Art Blakey, Randy Weston and Dizzy Gillespie, the explosion of Nu Yorican Latin music in New York City starting in the 1960s - Mambo, Boogaloo, Latin funk and soul - through to the sacred and powerful Afro-derived music of the religions of Santería in Cuba, Candomblé in Brazil and Voodoo in Haiti, which all came into existence on account of the Atlantic slave trade which began over 400 years ago. On a wider scale West African music remains the primary root of all African-American musical forms - from New Orleans jazz to Bronx rap, gospel, soul and more.

        This album features songs honouring the Nigerian gods of the Yoruba traditional religion - Yemoja, Obatala, Ogun, Sango and others - as well as a selection of instrumental cuts focusing on the Bata and Dundun drums.

        The album comes complete with extensive text and photography. 40- page outsize booklet / gatefold double vinyl and inners showing the influence of Yoruba culture throughout the world and the social and historical context for the music contained here.

        FORMAT INFORMATION

        CD Info: CD package includes 40 page booklet featuring text and photography.

        Various Artists

        Soul Jazz Records Presents Deutsche Elektronische Musik: Experimental German Rock And Electronic Music 1972-83

          Soul Jazz Records’ new 2018 edition of their long out of print classic first ‘Deutsche Elektronische Musik: Experimental German Rock And Electronic Music 1972-83’ is “a near-definitive guide to some of the world’s most extraordinary music” - The Guardian.

          The album features a stunning line up of groups including Cluster, Can, Faust, Popol Vuh, Neu!, Amon Düül, Harmonia, La Düsseldorf and Tangerine Dream, as well as a host of lesser known groups such as Kollectiv, Ibliss, Between and many more. This new edition is fully remastered and features all the original artwork and tracks.

          The first seeds of German rock and experimental electronic music were planted in 1968, as students and workers in Paris, Prague, Mexico and throughout the world demonstrated against mainstream society, the war in Vietnam, imperialism and bourgeois values. The birth of a counter-culture, drug experimentation and social change expanded musical worlds. Germany experienced its own cultural revolution fuelled by these worldwide student and worker revolts and by a generation’s desire to rid itself of the guilt of war.

          German rock and experimental electronic music grew out of this worldwide counter-cultural revolution of 1968. The objectives were to create new music, ‘free’ from the past, with many German youth turning their back on mainstream society. From the opening of the first collective / cooperative, Kommune 1, in Berlin, to the formation of the Baader-Meinhof terrorist group and the bombings, kidnappings and killings of the Revolutionary Armed Forces (RAF), young Germans sought out new values and a lifestyle outside of ‘the system’.

          These cooperative and communal experiences led to a number of new collective German bands forming, such as Amon Düül, Faust, Can (all featured here) and others and these ideals drove this new movement. A music that gave seed out of the cultural ‘nothingness’ that young Germans felt as a consequence of Germany’s role in the Second World War. A generation who grew up stifled by the recent history of Nazi atrocities, the guilt of their parents’ generation and their disillusionment at the reintegration of old Nazis into mainstream society.

          Influenced equally by the electronic experimentalism of Stockhausen, the progressive rock of Pink Floyd and the black American jazz and soul music played at the occupying armed forces bases, young German artists seamlessly created out of this a new unique music with its own unique identity.

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          2xLP 1 includes MP3 Download Code.

          New Jamal Moss album. ALWAYS a pleasure, never a chore. As always the revered Chicagoan treats us to glimpses of the future beamed back through his own spiritual synthology. This is his third album for Soul Jazz and his umpteenth album for us universal beings and I have to say without hyperbole, possibly some of his finest work to date. Opening with some typically Afrikans With Mainframes style dirg, "Youth Brainwashing And The Extremist Cults" instantly lets you know you're listening to a Jamal Moss record, no question or doubt. Soon though we're wallowing in the gentle caress of "The Melody Lingers", a beautiful, hang drum based piece that hints at the producer opening up his feminine side to us. Side A finishes with "The Seduction Syndrome", a squelchy stomper with unrelenting piano licks and fat-ass kick drum. "Awake And Energize" kicks off side B suspended on celestial pads and with star aligned keyboards. Simple house rhythms gentle permeate the fug refracting 25 years of history and lineage but never quite reaching their logical climax, keeping us hanging on tenterhooks. "Video Jazz" ensures one last dance before we have to change the disc, a frenetic glider not a million miles away from a K Hand production with its toy box perc and lazer bleep riffs. No HB LP would be complete without an interstellar epic, and he happily obliges on side B with the title track "The Red Notes". Obviously an ode to our closest planetary neighbor, the track simmers and bubbles with Marsian synths and space gloop, a true piece of alien sonic flora that begs you to get lost in. "The Emotional Listener" takes us deep into his hardware mechanics, Moss teasing out malfunctioning rhythms from the depths of his equipment, incarnating them with his own soul. Two tracks left, the equally space-age hymn of "The Red Notebook" and finally, just when you thought he'd forgotten you, some proper filthy acid squeal on "The Tone Bather". Honestly folks, I thought I had all the Jamal Moss records I needed by now but boy gone knocked this one out the park! So, so very good this shows just how a long playing electronically charged album should ride out; cruising through styles and flavours like a wormhole pilot. Fully endorsed!

          STAFF COMMENTS

          Matt says: Cosmic techno stalwart, Chicago dance archivist and general underground demigod Jamal Moss returns to Soul Jazz for some of his best work yet - serious!

          Various Artists

          Soul Jazz Records Presents: Deutsche Elektronische Musik 3

          This latest instalment in Soul Jazz Records’ successful ‘Deutsche Elektronische Musik’ series delves deeper into the German nation’s vaults to bring a fascinating new collection that again brings together a selection of classic German electronic and rock groups, including Neu!, Cluster, Popol Vuh, La Düsseldorf and Agitation Free, alongside a host of rare tracks by lesser known artists such as Michael Bundt, Bröselmaschine, Dronsz and Achim Reichel.

          The music of ‘Deutsche Elektronische Musik 3’ ranges from the introverted pastoralism of Hans Joachim Roedelius and Bröselmaschine to the angular and futuristic electronic experimentations of Klauss Weiss, Pyrolator, Deuter and Michael Bundt, to the proto-punk of La Düsseldorf and the heavy space, progressive and cosmic rock of Missus Beastly, Niagara and Dyzan.

          The music on ‘Deutsche Elektronische Musik 3’ was recorded in the 1970s up to the early 1980s, at a time when forward-thinking German electronic and rock groups were searching for a new musical identity in order to separate themselves from both the cultural legacy of post-World War II Germany as well the ‘cultural imperialism’ of USA and UK rock. In this process, German groups created some of the most unique and inspired music, the defining motorik beat alongside a host of ethno-musical influences from far afield - including Turkey, India, Brazil - as well as the musical and futurist possibilities of developments in electronics and technology itself.

          ‘Deutsche Elektronische Musik 3’ is released as a deluxe double CD pack, heavyweight triple LP and digital download album. The new extensive sleevenotes are by David Stubbs, who is the author of the acclaimed book ‘Future Days: Krautrock and the Building of Modern Germany’ (Faber & Faber).

          STAFF COMMENTS

          Barry says: Yet another superb outing for this already mindblowing string of releases on the ever-reliable Soul Jazz. Cosmic Krautrock, swirling synths and arpeggiated octaves, crackling filters and determined, marching percussion all round. If you've not heard of the 'Deutsche Elektronische Musik' series before, now is your chance. If you have, you already want this anyway.

          Various Artists

          Soul Jazz Records Presents - Dancehall: The Rise Of Jamaican Dancehall Culture

            Soul Jazz Records are releasing a new 2017 edition of their classic album ‘Dancehall: The Rise Of Jamaican Dancehall Culture’. This long-out-of-print collection is now available as a double CD and triple vinyl. The album is a lightning-flash collection of all-time classic and definitive dancehall classics as well as a stellar selection of more obscure tracks. Featuring Yellowman, Tenor Saw, Sister Nancy, Ini Kamoze, Chaka Demus & Pliers, Michigan & Smiley, Super Cat, Cutty Ranks, Eek-A-Mouse, Gregory Isaacs and more, this album features non-stop floor-filling party tune rockers throughout. ‘Dancehall’ is released to coincide with the new 2017 edition of the stunning 400+ photos deluxe coffee table book ‘Dancehall: The Rise Of Jamaican Dancehall Culture’, featuring Beth Lesser’s amazing ‘Dancehall’ photography (also newly published by Soul Jazz Records). This book has become the definitive cultural reference book for Jamaican dancehall and features hundreds of killer photographs, extensive text and interviews with many of the artists. 

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Patrick says: Soul Jazz can always be relied upon to pack a comp full of heat, and this dancehall collection has all the greats on here. Yellowman, Sister Nancy, Ini Kamoze, Super Cat – you name ‘em, they’re on here. Plus, we get “Murder She Wrote”. Mega!

            Soul Jazz Records’ ‘Boombox 2’ is a new selection of early rap music from the period 1979 - 83, with barely a household name in sight. Featured here are some the earliest hip hop records that came out of New York City following the enormous commercial success of the first ever rap record, ‘Rapper’s Delight’ by the Sugarhill Gang, in September 1979. Artists and producers alike tried to jump aboard the new commercial possibilities of hip hop. By the end of the year there were 30 hip hop singles, all released by independent New York labels. The following year there were over 100 more and so on.

            ‘Boombox 2’ tells the story of how hip hop went from its evolutionary roots in the Bronx through DJs Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash and Afrika Bambaataa through to its second phase where veteran music producers - Paul Winley, Peter Brown, Joe Robinson and others - all based in Harlem, began to put rap on vinyl for the first time.

            Harlem is also where the separate worlds of disco and hip hop met through the styles and influence of earlier ‘uptown’ DJs - DJ Hollywood and Eddie Cheba. In similar fashion these veteran Harlem-based producers instinctively tapped into a long lineage of African-American rhythm and blues, soul and disco.

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Patrick says: "Well I went to the hat store today and I bought myself a hat! Ha ha ha ha!" Soul Jazz take us to Harlem with a second survey of the nascent hip hop scene. It's lino time!

            Skatalites

            Soul Jazz Records Present: Original Ska Sounds FromThe Skatalites 1963-65: Independence Ska And The Far East Sound

            The Skatalites brought the sound of Jamaica to the world. At the start of the 1960s, in the space of just a couple of years Don Drummond, Tommy McCook, Jackie Mittoo, Ernest Ranglin, Johnny ‘Dizzy’ Moore, Lloyd Knibbs, Lloyd Brevett and others defined the exciting beat of ‘Ska’ as the sound of newly independent Jamaica.
            As the house band at Clement ‘Sir Coxsone’ Dodd’s newly launched Studio One Records at 13 Brentford Road, the group comprising the finest jazz musicians on the island played on literally 1000s of recordings – Bob Marley and The Wailers, Toots and The Maytals, Delroy Wilson, Ken Boothe, Alton Ellis and many, many more.
            During their existence (1963-65) The Skatalites also recorded 100s of their own songs, released either under their own name, or The Studio One Orchestra, or that of band members Drummond, McCook etc.
            This is the first collection on Soul Jazz Records to bring you some of their finest material – from classics such as ‘Guns of Navarone’, ‘El Pussy Cat Ska’, ‘Christine Keeler’ through to some serious rarities such as Dizzy Johnny and The Studio One Orchestra’s ‘Sudden Destruction’ and Don Drummond’s ‘Coolie Boy’.
            The Skatalites’ ska sound brought together aspects of jazz, latin, rhythm and blues, proto-Rastafarianism (tracks such as ‘Full Dread’, ‘Beardsman Ska’) and more. The intensity and energy of their sound was matched by the experimentation of the troubled genius of Don Drummond whose ‘far east’ modal trombone sound added a complex melancholy to the music of the Skatalites (the group split-up after Drummond was charged with murdering his wife, dancer Margarita Mahfood). This album was originally released as a limited-edition Record Store Day collectors 7-inch box set (now deleted) and is now available for the first time as a double LP edition, CD and digital release complete with 10 extra bonus tracks and new extensive sleeve notes.

            Various Artists

            Soul Jazz Records Presents: Nigeria Soul Power 70

              THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2017 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

              Soul Jazz Records’ Record Store Day exclusive 7” box set comprising five heavyweight 70s Afro- Funk, Afro-Disco and Afro-Rock 7” singles with unique bespoke label artwork and all digitally remastered.

              Seriously rare, killer and classic Nigerian 70s Afro- Funk, Afro-Disco and Afro-Rock tunes bought together here in this unique one off Record Store Day box set edition.

              Various Artists

              Soul Jazz Records Presents: Soul 70

                THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2017 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

                Soul Jazz Records’ Record Store Day exclusive 7” box set comprising five fantastic 70s soul 7” singles reproduced here in exact replica bespoke label artwork and all digitally re-mastered.

                Seriously rare, killer and classic soul tunes brought together here in this unique one off Record Store Day box set edition.

                Various Artists

                Soul Jazz Records Presents: Studio One Hi-Fi Special

                  THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2017 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

                  Unique Soul Jazz Records Record Store Day 7” collector’s box set comprising five separate singles featuring ten killer rare tracks from Studio One Records, featuring ska, roots, rocksteady, dub and more from the greatest reggae label of all time.

                  Seminal, rare and classic tunes collected together here for the first time ever.

                  Laraaji

                  Celestial Vibration

                  Originally released in 1978 under the name Edward Larry Gordon, "Celestial Vibration", the debut album from Laraaji was first reissued by Soul Jazz in 2010. Re-entering the collective musical consciousness around the same time that Iasos and Ariel Kalma beamed back through our dream catchers, that reissue prompted a widescale re-evaluation of all things new age and ambient. Now Soul Jazz remaster and re-release this hypnotic piece once again, this time on both formats (CD & vinyl) as a fullscale Laraaji release. "Celestial Vibration" is a cosmic journey which sounded unlike anything else when it was first released in 1978. Laraaji’s album was first issued in New York as a private-pressing record with only very minimal distribution. His distinctive use of the harp-like open-stringed zither and kalimba creates a hypnotic trance like musical landscape. Laraaji first came to fame in the 1980s as a worldwide ambient artist working with Brian Eno on EG Records. At this time Laraaji worked with a wide range of experimental musicians - Jon Hassell, Harold Budd, Michael Brook, Bill Nelson, Roger Eno, Nana Vasconcelos and Bill Laswell.  Today Gordon continues his unique musical and spiritual path, performing his music mainly for meditation at yoga global retreats. He runs his own Therapeutic Laughter Workshop where he coaches people in the mindful use of laughing for its health benefits.

                  STAFF COMMENTS

                  Barry says: New-age ambient maestro Laraaji comes back in this week with a reissue of his long-out-of-print debut album 'Celestial Vibration'. Swooning ambience, swirling pads and two tracks of epic proportions. Listened to in full, it's a trip you'll never forget.

                  Soul Jazz Records’ latest crate digging excursion into the Crescent City vaults delves deep into the roots and history of the voodoo world of New Orleans funk and as ever features a stellar selection of killer rare funk and soul. The album is jam packed with serious break heavy heavyweight funk tunes from classic New Orleans artists including Eddie Bo, Betty Harris, Dave Bartholomew, Johnny Adams and Eldridge Holmes (with the ever-present Allen Toussaint and The Meters as always behind the scenes). There is also a host of rare cuts from a number of lesser known second line New Orleans artists, whose fame rarely reached past the walls of the city, including Gus ‘The Groove’ Lewis, James K-Nine, Norma Jean, Bob French, Chuck Colbert, Zilla Mayes and Joe Haywood. In the 1960s the syncopated beat of New Orleans funk developed out of a gumbo mix of New Orleans local flavours rhythm and blues, Mardi Gras Indians, the street percussion Second Line Of The Jazz Funeral And Marching bands, Caribbean rhumba and mambo rhythms, all of which are in full effect. Even Zydeco, the rhythm and blues offspring of Louisiana Cajun music, had 'the funk', groovily illustrated by Clifton Chenier, 'The King Of Zydeco', here.
                  New Orleans music and Voodoo both have their roots in the African American free black and slave gatherings held at Congo Square from the 18th Century onwards. Here Voodoo king Doctor John (the original one) and Voodoo queen Marie Levaux held court over their followers and here also could be heard the first sounds of New Orleans jazz music. Soul Jazz Records’ latest album describes how these two cultural forms are inextricably interrelated. The album traces the path of funk from the very first glimpses of the style - Dave Bartholomew’s super tight ‘The Monkey’ (recorded in 1957) and James Waynes’ junkie jailbird anthem ‘Junco Partner’ (1951, later covered by Dr John, Professor Longhair, James Booker and The Clash) through to the 1970s heavyweight boogie funk of Chocolate Milk’s rare groove classic ‘Action Speak Louder Than Words’ and The Baron’s ‘Making It Better’.
                  Also featured is a selection of hardcore classic funk productions from the legendary Eddie Bo (James K-Nine, David Robinson) and the genius of Allen Toussaint (Eldridge Holmes, Gus ‘The Groove’ Lewis, Lou Johnson). There are also a number of super rare independent New Orleans’ one off 45 single funk productions from the likes of Chick Colbert and Bob French. And lastly, New Orleans funk female vocalists are in full effect with tracks by Betty Harris (whose ‘Lost Queen Of New Orleans Soul’ has just come out on Soul Jazz Records), Zilla Mayes and Norma Jean.

                  Betty Harris

                  The Lost Queen Of New Orleans Soul

                  Betty Harris’ ‘The Lost Queen Of New Orleans Soul’ collects together the steady stream of amazing soul and funk singles issued by Betty Harris from 1964 to 1969, under the musical guidance of legendary composer, musician and producer extraordinaire Allen Toussaint, a collection which truly captures the heart and soul of the city of New Orleans during this era.
                   
                  Betty Harris’s powerful, fiery soulful vocals found a perfect accompaniment with the New Orleans’ players that Toussaint put together to back her which, by the time of her funk classic ‘There’s A Break In The Road’, were the legendary super tight, super funk New Orleans group The Meters. With the extraordinary songwriting skills of Allen Toussaint alongside the powerful, soaring, confident and emotive singer and the groove of The Meters, you have an unbeatable combination. That Harris never in fact lived in New Orleans (she flew in from Florida for all her sessions with Toussaint’s local in-house players) seems almost an irrelevance, a geographical aside to the defining New Orleans sound captured on the recordings featured here. 

                  All of these singles featured here were released on Allen Toussaint and his business partner Marshal Sehorn’s local New Orleans label Sansu, widely distributed in the Southern city but in only limited quantities elsewhere. As a consequence, Betty Harris’ music failed to achieve the commercial success of other New Orleans artists such as Lee Dorsey (who she recorded with) and The Meters (who backed her). At the end of the decade she stopped recording and retired from the music business to raise her family in Florida. This is no reflection of the stunning musical quality of all these songs which encompass everything from southern soul, heavy funk, deep soul ballads and Northern Soul.

                  Betty Harris has been a cornerstone of Soul Jazz Records’ ‘New Orleans Funk’ and ‘New Orleans Soul’ compilations. Always soulful and always funky, Betty Harris’ music contains the essence of New Orleans music. This collection is released on CD, heavyweight gatefolddouble LP vinyl (with digital download code) and digital download album and comes complete with full biography, original label artwork. 

                  Soul Jazz Records release Tee Mac’s ‘Night Illusion’, a lost classic Nigerian Afro-soul meets disco-boogie-funk album originally released in Nigeria in 1980 as a private press release of 1000 copies on the enigmatic artist’s own label. Impossibly hard to find, the record remains practically unknown outside of Nigeria. Tee Mac Omatshola Iseli is a multi-instrumentalist, composer and arranger and features on Soul Jazz Records’ recent collection "Nigeria Soul Fever: Afro Funk Disco & Boogie" alongside Joni Haastrup, Christy Essien and others, as well as on a recent compilation "Nepa Oh Nepa" released on Hot Casa earlier this year). The timelessness of this soulful, ground-breaking funk jazz lost masterpiece "Night Illusion" leads to comparisons with James Mason’s legendary lost classic album "Rhythm Of Life", with his unique individualism and intensity hinting at the boogie funk of groups such as Mass Production and Slave, so loved by artists such as Moodyman and Theo Parrish.
                  While Fela Kuti is now a cultural icon of Nigerian music throughout the world, the recent crossover success of William Onyeabor shows just how much undiscovered Nigerian music remains waiting to be explored outside of the country. Tee Mac was born in Lagos, the son of a Nigerian princess and a Swiss diplomat. He picked up the flute at age seven and ten years later was studying classical musical in Switzerland under his uncle the composer J.J. Direndirger. Returning to Lagos, Nigeria in 1970 he formed the heavyweight afro rock group Tee Mac & Afro Collection (which included Johnny Haastrup on keyboards and The Lijadu Sisters on vocals). This band were famously joined by the legendary Cream drummer Ginger Baker, who came to Nigeria to play with them in 1971 (captured in the film ‘Ginger Baker In Africa’). At age 24, Tee Mac moved to Germany where he co-wrote and recorded with the European disco group Silver Convention (whose ‘Fly Robin Fly’ became number one in the USA charts). This enabled him to return to Nigeria where he formed his own label SKJ Records to release his self-financed ‘Night Illusion’ album, as well as buying two nightclubs and also investing in a number of mineral mining companies. Tee Mac continues to live in Lagos today and travels the world as a composer – one of whose pieces is ‘The City Of Mer Kailash’ (2009), a two-hour ballet featuring over 60 dancers and a 100+ piece orchestra.
                  Soul Jazz Records are releasing this lost classic Nigerian album as an exact replica artwork reproduction LP (plus sleeve notes and digital download code), CD and digital album 


                  STAFF COMMENTS

                  Patrick says: Holy Smokes! After featuring the one and only Tee Mac on their recent "Nigeria Soul Fever" release, Soul Jazz go back in with a full scale reissue of his 1980 LP, thankfully reproduced with replica artwork!

                  Soul Jazz Records' new 'Boombox' features some of the many innovative underground first-wave of rap records made in New York in the period 1979-82, all released on small, independent, of ten family-concern record companies, at a time when hip-hop music still remained under the radar. This first exuberant wave of innocent, upbeat,'party on the block' rap records were the first to try and create the sounds heard in community centres, block parties and street jams that initially took place in the Bronx in the mid-1970s. But where Flash, Kool Herc and Bambaataa were back-spinning, mixing and scratching together now classic breakbeat records like The Incredible Bongo Band's 'Apache' or Babe Ruth's 'The Mexican', these first rap records were all made using live bands, often replaying then current disco tunes, whilst MCs rapped over the top, creating a unique sound that later became known derisively as 'oldschool'. And while hip-hop started in the Bronx, rap on vinyl began in Harlem where long-time established rhythm and blues producer-owned record companies such as Joe Robinson's Enjoy Records, Paul Winley's Winley Records, Delmar Donnel's Delmar International and Jack 'Fatman' Taylor's Rojac and Tayster were the first off the mark to realise the commercial potential of rap music-releasing early ground-breaking records that all quickly followed in the wake of the first rap record, The Sugarhill Gang's 'Rappers Delight', a million-selling worldwide hit. This collection celebrates these first old-school rap records, bringing together rare, classic and obscure tracks released in the early days of rap.

                  Deluxe double CD-pack comes with slipcase, 40-page outsize perfect-bound booklet,extensive notes, exclusive photography and original label artwork. Triple heavy weight vinyl includes full artwork, text and notes as well as free download code.

                  FORMAT INFORMATION

                  3xLP includes MP3 Download Code.

                  Various Artists

                  Soul Jazz Records Presents New Orleans Fun - New Orleans: The Original Sound Of Funk

                    THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2016 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.




                    The Skatalites

                    Soul Jazz Records Present: Original Ska Sounds FromThe Skatalites 1963-65: Independence Ska And The Far East Sound

                      THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2016 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

                      Unique Soul Jazz Records’ Record Store Day seven-inch box set comprising five separate singles featuring ten killer tracks from the first and greatest ska and reggae band of all time.

                      Seminal, rare and classic tunes collected together here for the first time ever.

                      Limited to 500 copies.

                      Count Ossie And The Mystic Revelation Of Rastafari

                      Tales Of Mozambique

                      Soul Jazz Records release Count Ossie and The Mystic Revelation’s seminal 1975 album 'Tales of Mozambique' in an expanded double album format, fully remastered and with the inclusion of two bonus rare single-only tracks, full sleevenotes, exclusive photographs and interview.

                      Count Ossie is the central character in the development of Rastafarian roots music, nowadays an almost mythical and iconic figure. His importance in bringing Rastafarian music to a populist audience is matched only by Bob Marley’s promotion of the faith internationally in the 1970s. Count Ossie’s drummers performed on the first commercially released single to integrate Rastafarian traditional music with popular music: the vocal group The Folkes Brothers’ groundbreaking song ‘Oh Carolina’, recorded for producer Prince Buster in 1959. In 1966 his drummers greeted the momentous arrival of Haile Selassie at Kingston airport. His legendary jam sessions in his Rastafarian compound up in the hills of Wareika, Kingston, are famous for the many Jamaican musicians who attended including The Skatalites players - Roland Alphonso, Don Drummond, Johnny Moore, Lloyd Knibbs - and many others. The Mystic Revelation of Rastafari formed in Kingston, Jamaica, in 1970, a union of Count Ossie’s Rastafarian drummers - variously known as his African Drums, Wareikas or his Afro-Combo - and the saxophonist Cedric Im Brooks’ horns group, The Mystics.

                      The Mystic Revelation of Rastafari are the defining group in bringing authentic Rastafarian rhythms into the collective consciousness of popular music, their unique music is at once rooted in the deep traditions and rituals of traditional drumming alongside a forward-thinking, even avant-garde, artistry influenced by the likes of John Coltrane, Sun Ra, Pharoah Sanders and other pioneering African-American jazz artists radicalised and charged by the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Tales of Mozambique is a truly unique and fascinating ground-breaking album.

                      ‘Studio One Showcase’, subtitled ‘The Sound Of Studio One In The 1970s’, brings together a new fine selection of classic tracks from Horace Andy, Freddy McGregor, Johnny Osbourne, Lone Ranger, Sugar Minott, The Heptones, Wailing Souls and other seminal reggae artists all recorded at Studio One in the 1970s.

                      By the start of the 1970s, Clement Dodd’s Studio One record label was at a crossroads. The previous two decades had given the producer and record label more success than most aspired to in a lifetime. From the mid-1950s on, the Downbeat Soundsystem had conquered all opponents - from Duke Reid to Prince Buster - and shaped and led the musical landscape of the dancehall. In the 1960s the establishment of Studio One Records at 13 Brentford Road in Kingston, Jamaica, had led to a Ford Motors-esque production line of hits that similarly defined reggae music.

                      The 1970s were to be Clement ‘Sir Coxsone’ Dodd’s most challenging and yet ultimately most creative decade of all. Like the most zealous and resourceful of pioneers, Studio One was about to embark on a stunning era of reinvention, adaptation, stripping down and versioning, each step of which marked new musical developments in reggae music - roots reggae, deejay, dancehall, rub a dub and more.

                      This album presents an overview of this exciting and ground-breaking decade of the 1970s at Studio One, during an era where, despite challenges from new producers, political turmoil and almost constant musical and technological innovations in reggae, Clement ‘Sir Coxsone’ Dodd was able to maintain his position as the pioneering leader in reggae music and to maintain Studio One as the number one sound in reggae music.

                      FORMAT INFORMATION

                      2xLP includes MP3 Download Code.

                      This is a second selection of independent disco records featuring rare and classic tracks originally released in the USA between the halcyon years of 1977 and 1985.

                      This release features only the finest disco, modern soul and boogie and is compiled by Disco Patrick who last year put together the mighty ‘Disco: An Encyclopedic Guide To The Cover Art Of Disco Records’ 400+ page deluxe book for Soul Jazz Records, as well as the first installment of ‘Disco: A Fine Selection Of Independent Disco, Modern Soul And Boogie.’

                      This album is released as a double CD and two separate double vinyl LPs (plus free download codes).

                      This album features rare, classic and in demand tracks from the mighty vaults of labels such as New York’s Salsoul and Miami’s TK Records - which, during the main disco era, became the main competitors to the major established record industry - through to killer virtually unknown tracks released on tiny bespoke one-off labels now impossible to find either in the history books or record shops of the world.

                      Before its mainstream consumption in the late 1970s, disco first emerged from independent record companies run by lovers of this new sound: Patrick Adams and Peter Brown, the powerhouse musical partnership based up in Harlem, New York; Henry Stone at TK, a man with a 30-year old career distributing black music; or the Cayre brothers at Salsoul, linking Latin roots with the deep, soulful music emerging from Philadelphia and New York.

                      In fact, as we can see on this album, Harlem was to prove a fertile ground of nascent independent disco with numerous young producers, alongside leaders of the pack Patrick Adams and Peter Brown, hustling to release oneoff or a couple of singles on their own independent labels.

                      All the music on this album has been sonically and digitally remastered with love and is presented complete with sleevenotes, original label artwork and full length extended disco editions.

                      • Fantastically in-depth sleevenotes
                      • Band interviews
                      • Exclusive photographs
                      • All tracks sonically remastered.

                      Initially a marginalised phenomenon, the underground grunge scene of Washington had barely a handful of adherents, strung out in isolated towns across the vast state of Washington. In those early days bands who showed an allegiance to their roots of punk risked social ostracism and worse. And yet this community of outsiders produced the biggest band in the world in 1991. The unforeseen success of Nirvana turned the record label Sub Pop from an underground phenomenon into the key backstory of mainstream music's must-read tales of the 90s: it became a new Motown: substituting Seattle for Detroit. Kurt Cobain's death froze this saga into musical history forever more.

                      While taking nothing away from Nirvana or from Sub Pop, this release presents the complexity of the music scene of the North-West in its most infamous era. Rather than celebrating the (undeniable) talent of one band, one label, one city, this release ravels up the simple thread of music history and takes pleasure in its more tangled knots. In the late 80s and early 90s, the musical fire raging in Seattle burned so bright that no one could see pinpricks of light dotting the entire state of Washington. Beyond Seattle, the North-West skies were similarly ablaze with music and creativity.

                      This compilation features some of the divergent bands emerging out of the North-West during this era. Intensely researched and documented, it features bands who have now disappeared from history, after releasing maybe just a couple of singles, or an album, or never even making it onto vinyl - alongside bands who continue to this day.

                      Featured here is a new collection spanning Studio One’s dancehall period - singers and deejays on classic Studio One rhythms, studio and electronic wizardry from the Brentford Road headquarters, lots of rare 12” singles, all effortlessly brought together to nice up the dance.

                      When Clement ‘Sir Coxsone’ Dodd first ruled the dancehalls of Kingston in the 1950s, fighting off the soundsystem competition of Duke Reid, King Edwards and others, few could imagine how far the reign of Studio One would last. However, the emergence of dancehall as a distinct style of reggae at the end of the 1970s, as upstart competing producers began recording vocalists and deejays performing over replayed classic Studio One rhythms, in many ways made the influence of Clement Dodd’s vision more omnipotent than ever before (and lasting to this day).

                      Not surprisingly, Clement Dodd’s creativity and business acumen made him quick to respond to this musical phenomenon - he soon began voicing the new stable of Studio One singers and deejays, such as Sugar Minott and Lone Ranger, over original classic Studio One rhythms recorded in the late 1960s - by producing some of the most innovative, time-bending and creative music of his career.

                      This album comes as CD with slipcase, super-loud, super-heavy triple vinyl with free download code.

                      Various Artists

                      Soul Jazz Records Presents Punk 45: There Is No Such Thing As Society

                      Soul Jazz Records’ new album ‘Punk 45: There Is No Such Thing As Society’ is the second volume in their ‘Punk 45’ series, released to follow on from Soul Jazz Records’ recent massive deluxe 400 page ‘Punk 45s’ cover art book edited and compiled by Jon Savage (author of the seminal book on punk, ‘England’s Dreaming’) and Stuart Baker (founder of Soul Jazz Records). While the first album in this series, ‘Punk 45: Kill The Hippies! Kill Yourself!’, focused on underground punk in America, this album charts the rise of punk and post-punk in Britain in the years 1977-81.

                      This new ‘Punk 45’ album features a collection of seminal, classic, obscure and rare punk and post-punk singles from the likes of The Art Attacks, The Mekons, TV Personalities, Swell Maps, and many more, charting the rise of independent music and Do It Yourself culture that exploded in Britain in the wake of punk.

                      The album comes complete with text, biographies on each of the bands, exclusive photos and original record artwork.

                      FORMAT INFORMATION

                      CD Info: The album is released on CD with outsize large booklet
                      and thick slipcase.

                      Soul Jazz Records’ new ‘Punk 45’ album charts the rise of underground punk across the United States in the years 1973- 1980.

                      The album coincides with the release of Soul Jazz Records’ massive new deluxe 400 page ‘Punk 45s’ cover art book edited and compiled by Jon Savage (author of the seminal book on punk, ‘England’s Dreaming’) and Stuart Baker (founder of Soul Jazz Records). The book includes text by Jon Savage, numerous interviews and articles from the likes of Richard Hell, Seymour Stein (Sire Records), Geoff Travis (Rough Trade), and Peter Saville (Factory), as well as exhaustive biographies, band lineups and more on the many hundreds of bands who feature in the book.

                      ‘Punk 45: Kill The Hippies! Kill Yourself! The American Nation Destroys Its Young - Underground Punk In The United States Of America’ is the first in Soul Jazz Records’ ‘Punk 45’ series of album releases coinciding with the new book and will be followed at the start of next year by ‘Punk 45 Vol. 2 Underground Punk In The UK’.

                      The ‘Punk 45’ album features a collection of seminal, classic, obscure and rare punk and proto-punk 45 singles from the likes of Pere Ubu, The Zeros, The Randoms, Electric Eels, The Pagans, The Deadbeats, The Lewd and many more - a lightning rod journey across the states of America - Cleveland, Detroit, Los Angeles, Akron, New Orleans, Philadelphia - tracing the rise of punk music in these various towns and cities. The album comes complete with extensive text, biographies on each of the bands, exclusive photos and original record artwork.

                      FORMAT INFORMATION

                      CD Info: CD with outsize large booklet and thick slipcase.

                      Soul Jazz Records re-release "Acid: Can You Jack?", a double CD and two DJ-friendly super loud vinyl double packs presenting the definitive guide to the evolution of house and acid in Chicago. The album traces how the sound developed as clubs like Ron Hardy's legendary Music Box and Frankie Knuckles' Warehouse, along with radio mixes by the Hot Mix Five, put Chicago on the map. The album features all-time classic tracks such as Phuture's epic 12 minute "Acid Trax" and Sleezy D's "I've Lost Control" alongside many rare and experimental tracks such as Lil Louis's "Video Clash" and Marshall Jefferson's "Go Wild Rhythm Tracks". With sleevenotes by Tim Lawrence (who wrote "Love Saves The Day"), exclusive photos and interviews with Marshall Jefferson, Adonis, Tyree and more, the album shows how Chicago's unique culture and artists led to some of the most important music ever made.

                      The Lijadu Sisters

                      Afro-Beat Soul Sisters

                      The Lijadu Sisters released a series of albums in the 1970s in Nigeria that blended heavyweight Afro-beat with psychedelic Afro-rock, high-life, disco and soul in a truly unique combination. These albums are impossibly rare to find and this collection brings together the best of those recordings.

                      The Lijadu Sisters were the most successful female group in Nigeria in the 1970s and managed to overturn many stereotypes and attitudes as they carved out a unique space for themselves in a predominantly male arena. Their influences ranged from female soul singers such as Aretha Franklin, The Pointer Sisters and Miriam Makeba to the Afro-beat of Fela Anikulapo Kuti as well as the juju music of IK Dairo and the highlife of Victor Olaiya.

                      The Lijadu Sisters - identical twins Taiwo and Kehinde Lijadu - grew up in Ibadan, Nigeria. They recorded their debut album for Decca Records in 1969. At the start of the 1970s the two singers joined ex-Cream drummer Ginger Baker’s short-lived all-African group Salt (which also included future members of the Afro-Rock group Blo). This album brings together the best of their tracks from the four albums recorded for the Afrodisia label in Nigeria - ‘Danger’ (1976), ‘Mother Africa’ (1977), ‘Sunshine’ (1978) and ‘Horizon Unlimited’ (1979).


                      STAFF COMMENTS

                      Philippa says: Fuzz guitars, talking drums, funky rhythms and African vocal harmonies... What more could you want?!

                      Kevin Martin (aka The Bug / King Midas Sound) and Stuart Baker (Soul Jazz Records) have put together a unique project bringing together new, exclusive and in demand digital music by electronic futurists Harmonic 313, Diplo, Roots Manuva, South Rakkas Crew,The Bug and more, alongside a killer selection of Jamaican digital and electronic scientific dub and dancehall. Exclusive new tracks and mixes by Harmonic 313, Stereotyp, Federation; in demand tracks from the likes of Roots Manuva, Diplo and South Rakkas Crew; the toughest digital and twisted rhythms from legendary producers King Jammy, Steely and Clevie, Sly Dunbar, Prince Jazzbo, King Tubby, Firehouse Crew and more all feature on this unique release.

                      The double album comes in special edition heavyweight deluxe hardcover 2CD card casing complete with a deluxe graphic novel by Italian comic book designer Paolo Parisi (whose books include subjects as diverse as John Coltrane and Chernobyl). This specially commissioned graphic novel is a science fiction vision of the future of digital music, featuring King Tubby, Steely & Clevie, Jammy, Jazzbo, complete with Alien Sound Lord Abductors, Aural Freedom Fighters and Digi-Dub Voyagers.


                      The new wave of New York art/rock groups under the DFA umbrella, or The Strokes, The Liars or Radio 4 all have their roots in the city's late 70s / early 80s no wave/post-punk scene. This is Soul Jazz's second look at the music from that era, and delves deeper than before. The music here ranges from the guitar-driven experimentation of Sonic Youth, Red Transistor and minimalism of composers Rhys Chatham and Glenn Branca to the dubbed-out disco of Arthur Russell and Nicky Siano's Felix project and all female Pulsallama. This all sits alongside a healthy amount of punk-funk and disco-not-disco from the likes of Y Pants, Glorious Strangers, Mofungo, Vortex or proto-electro from Clandestine.

                      This album is a unique project for Soul Jazz Records, featuring all-newly recorded exclusive tracks of future dub and dubstep from key artists in the scene. After two killer Digital Mystikz singles on the label last year and an amazing amount of publicity around the dubstep movement, this album clearly shows the influence of original electronic dub pioneers like King Tubby, Scientist and King Jammy on this new generation of artists and producers. Emerging out of south London, dubstep has grown from its roots in the grime and drum and bass scenes to create a whole new movement of artists - including Digital Mystikz, Skream, Scuba Kode 9 and Burial - all influenced by soundsystem culture as well as technology. With heavy basslines and complex drum patterns, this is dance music that also works for the mind, being both progressive and innovative.

                      More ace ska, rocksteady, reggae, dub and dancehall from the vaults, brought to us by those people who know a thing about reggae dancefloor fillers, Soul Jazz. "400% Dynamite" originally hit the shelves in 2000, and includes must-have tracks by King Tubby, U-Roy, Paris Connection, Barrington Levy ("Under Me Sensi"), The Cimarons, Prince Buster, Tener Saw & Buju Banton ("Ring The Alarm Quick"), Toots & The Maytals ("54-46 Was My Number"), General Degree and many more (15 tracks in all), taking in reggae, ska, rocksteady, dub, roots and dancehall.

                      Tracklisting
                      1. Bongo Herman – Chairman Of The Board
                      2. Tenor Saw And Buju Banton – Ring The Alarm Quick
                      3. Prince Buster – Girl, Why Don't You Answer Me
                      4. Barrington Levy – Under Me Sensi
                      5. Cimarons – We Are Not The Same
                      6. Lloyd Robinson – Cuss Cuss
                      7. King Tubby – King Tubby Dub
                      8. Honey Boy Martin – Dreader Than Dread
                      9. Dennis Alcapone – Cassius Clay
                      10. Toots & The Maytals – 54-46 Was My Number
                      11. General Degree – Pot Cover
                      12. Paris Connection – Who's That Lady
                      13. Granville Williams – Hi-Life
                      14. Lynn Taitt – Soul Food
                      15. U Roy – Stick Together

                      As championed by the likes of David Byrne, Beck (who took the musical template of Os Mutantes and ran with it), The Bees, Kurt Cobain, Stereolab, Sean Lennon, Tortoise and many more, Tropicalia revolutionized Brazilian music in the late 60s, mixing up psychedelic rock, avant-garde musique concrete (tape loops and sound experiments), samba, funk and soul into a truly unique combination. Against the backdrop of the most violent and repressive days of Brazilian military dictatorship, the artists on this collection created a new style of music considered so radical that both Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil were seen as such a threat by the ruling junta that they were first imprisoned then finally deported. This is the first album to bring together all the artists involved in Tropicalia, including Os Mutantes, Gilberto Gil, Caetano Veloso, Tom Ze, Gal Costa and Jorge Ben.

                      FORMAT INFORMATION

                      CD Info: The CD comes with extensive sleevenotes, exclusive photos, booklet and slipcase.

                      This album delves deeper into the vaults of the legendary Jamaican reggae label and features rare and classic roots as well as an unprecedented seven unreleased tracks that up till now have never seen the light of day. Roots and rastafarian music was being recorded at Studio One by Clement 'Sir Coxsone' Dodd from the early 1960s upto the 1990s and this album reflects the depth and diversity of roots music at the label. From the slow-ska of Dudley Sibbley, to the deep instrumental jazz cuts of Cedric Im Brooks over classic roots rhythms such as "Satta Massagana" or Winston Mathews stunning eerie version of Bob Marley and the Wailers "Sun Is Shining", this album has loads of goodies to offer. Featuring many of the classic Studio One artists – Willie Williams, Tommy McCook, Cedric Brooks, The Gladiators, Vin Gordon – as well as lesser known singers and players, the album collects together a host of musicians who benefited from Dodd's guiding hand at the mixing desk.


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