Tuesday, July 5, 2011

VA - Positively Reggae (1995)

Positively Reggae by Various Artists
1995 promo compilation put together by Sony subsidiary as part of some Keep Kids in School campaign. Its just a funny record to me, mostly because it features a handful of artists who don't quite strike me as role model material. Like, Bounty Killer telling kids to stay in school is funny to me b/c I imagine him like this, in front of a class of small frightened children >

1. Mothers and Fathers - Shabba Ranks
2. Where We Comin' From - Born Jamericans
3. Free Di Youth - Patra
4. No Way Around It - Shaggy
5. Respect - Vicious
6. Back to School - Worl-A-Girl
7. Teach the Children - Tony Rebel
8. Unity - Mad Cobra
9. Go to School - Bounty Killer
10. Peace We Want - Mega Banton/Ricky General/Shirley McLean
11. School Controversy - Damian "Junior Gong" Marley
12. Be Humble - Lieutenant Stitchie

Distributor:    Sony Music Distribution
Recording type:    Studio
Recording mode:    Stereo
SPAR Code:    n/a

Album notes
Producers include: Salaam Remi, Black Scorpio, English, Donovan Thomas, Lloyd Campbell.
Audio Mixers: Black Scorpio; Jack Scorpio; Culture Lee; Salaam Remi.
Audio Remixer: Salaam Remi.
Recording information: Black Scorpio Studios, Kingston, Jamaica; Crib, New York, NY; Mixing Lab Main Street; Palm Tree Enterprises, New York, NY.

There are countless examples of the slackness seemingly inherent to Jamaican dancehall music, but there has also been a strong trend to reintroduce the conscious themes and mindsets of old roots reggae into the genre, leading to dancehall tracks that actually preach and practice good citizenship. That's the case with this sampler, which features a dozen songs touching on kids, school, and parenting, a collection that exhibits all the bluster of straight dancehall with a softer center. Highlights include "Respect" (based very, very loosely on the old Stax song) by Vicious, and Tony Rebel's "Teach the Children." ~ Steve Leggett

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