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Issue 72 International Times
DRUG SQUAD PROBE SEX IN SKINHEAD VIOLENCE
By Paul Thompson
Now that we hve your attention, we can safely tell you're reading the YELL page again.
'DISGUSTING!': that's one word for us, according to people who write in to us and to IT. Neil, of Kennington, asks us 'If you get bored with Hairy music, what the fuck are you doing at Hyde Park anyway?,. Well, Neil, seeing as you go on to say that you try to see our point of view, we think we can tell you the obvious answer. We go there because there is nothing else to do, because it is free, because it is better than nothing. But there could be something better for us, because we're human too, Quite a lot of the Hyde Park music seems pseudo to us, true, but you've got your taste - we've got ours.
One bloke who wrote in, using very heavy language, but refusing to give his address, expected a 'slogging' for saying "If I want to read about SHIT music, I'll read the New Musical Something or-other or one of the other teeny bopper manuals', (We gather he means Reggae when he says 'shit music').
But you can read N.M.E till you are blue in Ihe face and still not find a competent Reggae review. We at YELL pride ourselves that our music section is just, about unique in British newspapers.This I is OUR kind of music and at least ~ have a column that lells us aboul it WELL!!!!!
The same bloke who wrote that leller asks IT to be faithful to its 'true readers', Well, we at YELL are doing this, If you remember what we said in the beginning this is a page to bring us all closer together. Blokes like the one who wrote that are against this, but let's all do like another letter-writer, David Gent, says: 'The same system shits on us all. If we all got together, maybe we could do something to stop it', AMEN SOUL BROTHER!!
YELL would like to get in touch with the skinheads from Manchester who wrote to Melody Maker. This is urgent - Thank You.
IT MAKES US SICK
BY 'BAN COMMERCIAL REGGAE' LEAGUE
WE are absolutely disgusted with the cheap commercial imitations of REGGAE that are being recorded just to cash in on the current boom!
Why can't they leave it to the people who know what they are recording'? By this, we mean Ken Parker, The Upsetters, Laurel Aitken - in fact the list is quite long. But when people like Bobby Shaw start to record such rubbish as 'Clockwork Man', it is enough to make us long.standing REGGAE fans sick, sick, sick!
Although they think they are doing us a favour by promoting OUR music by converting people into REGGAE fans, then we can only say that we wish they wouldn't.
We know that all REGGAE lovers will agree wilh us and we hope that someone will hear our plea and lend aid to our campaign to prevent REGGAE being mined and made into commercial rubbish by money-grabbing capitalists!!!!!!!
We'd. just like to add that our beloved editor has received a new LP from Trojan today (that's the deadline for this issue). The LP is 'Reggae with Soul by OWEN GRAY, and at 14/6 it is one of the best bargain records going. It is a well-produced mixture of Soul and Reggae and makes very pleasant listening.
THOSE responsible for putting this page together this time were Paul Thompson, Steve Maxted, Gay, Fred Dove, Kopy Kat, Chris Bodenham, Mick O'Grady. Simon Walsh, Dave Burke, Bob Thompson, Frances Wake & many others.
Keep reading YELL!
ANOTHER year begins andI the yearly change in the form of West Indian music can already be noted. The records are getting more imaginat•ive and inventive and the use of elect•ronic sounds, previously unknown in Reggae, is becoming more wide-spread.
One of the new Reggae forms is the Pop-a-Top sound with several singers and groups catching on. Easily the best In the current batch Is AMG 855, Nevada Joe by JOE GIBBS & the DESTROYERS. It starts off with some very ghostly. highly echoed talking and Then bursts into a chunky instrumental. As on most recent instrumentals, the organ does the bulk of the lead work. A must for your Reggae collection.
The worst in the current 'Pop·a Top sound' records is, surprisingly, by LEE PERRY & the UPSETTERS. It is US-324. Yakety Yak. Why this was released is beyond me. Surely the record company can spot an obviously bad record. The main lault Iies with the singing which I can only describe as diabolical, out of time & yeukll I'm sorry, I don't normally Include a bad record In my reviews but the message here Is that the Upsetters should, in future, stick to their excellent instrumentals.
Hey, I got quite worked up over that one, dldn't I? I'd better lower my blood pressure by telling you about TR 7709, Pressure Drop, by the MAYTALS. This one must top the Reggae Charts On merit alone. As opposed to the last record, the singing on this is excellent and a fast pace keeps you dancing. A typical and Iikeable Reggae rhythm will make Ihe sweat under the old armpits run, so don't forget your deoderant before leaving for the Palais. That other 'pressure' record, Reggae Pressure. by the HIPPY BOYS, has, as I predicted, made the Trojan Top Ten. I can pick·um.
Thank you Graem Goodall for giving me the first copy of Ihe SYMARIP's follow up to Skinhead Moon Stomp. I have been making good use of it. At the time of writing, no release data was set but it should be on the market any time. A complele contrast to Moon Stomp, the title is REDEEM. Oh yes, yet another form of Reggae which I would call Gospel Reggae. A religious type lyric which I can imagine the Salvation Army singing but the Symarip (alias the PYRAMIDS) bear no resemblance to that illustrious body. Some good harmony is featured and hand clapping completes the gospel feel which comes over well. Well done the Pyramid -
Symarip, and the producers for an Imaginative record.
Due for release on January 16th is the year's first Reggae Protest record. TR 7722. VIETNAM is JIMMY CLIFF's follow up to Wonderful World Beautiful People, and is the story of a soldier killed in Vielnam. The message on the record is somebody please stop that war now. You get your money's worth as it lasts longer than most singles and the producllon is really excellent. The pace is exactly similar to Wonderful World and the balance of Jimmy's voice with the backing is perfect. This is my record of the monlh and I must agree with Trojan, a smash hit,
The pirate station which has been broadcasting my programmes - Radio Sheila, has been running successfully for the past few weeks but the GPO at last managed to track down the transmittor and confiscate it. However, a new transmittor is already built so the fight against BBC monopoly goes on, and I must go on to a booking now, so Cheerio!