Artist / Title :
Lyn Taitt - Stepping Up
Toots & The Maytals - Who Knows Better (Version)
Jablonski - Soul Makossa
Jimmy London - Cathy's Clown

Label : Motion Records      Format : 10" single      Date : August 3, 2004
Rating : (1 to 5 stars)

Motion Records have unleashed the first in a series of three 10inch singles, which together will form the vinyl version of the label's forthcoming cd entitled "Out On A Funky Trip: Funk & Soul from Randy's 1970-75". Although reggae was the dominant force in Jamaican music at the time, there was still a demand for covers of the soul, funk and disco tunes heard at dances and on the radio. But with the 1973 release of Lyn Taitt's 7" single "Stepping Up b/w Out On A Funky Trip", Taitt broke the mould by coming up with two compositions of his own that bear comparison with any of the American funksters like The Meters or The JBs. Born in Trinidad where he led a steel band, guitarist Lynn Tait moved to Jamaica in 1962. He played in several bands, and even worked with The Skatalites. He finally broke through after forming the band Lynn Tait & The Jets. During the rocksteady era they were the foremost backing band, playing on a trailer load of classic rocksteady anthems for a variety of producers. With "Stepping Up", a wicked funky groovin' instrumental, he fully shows his craftmanship and his ability to excel in a funk tune. Toots & The Maytals' "Who Knows Better (Version)" carries a stronger reggae feel than the preceding track, but it's obvious that it incorporates a strong Memphis-flavoured rhythm & blues influence. On the flipside we're treated to two tunes with completely different moods. First there's Jablonski's "Soul Makossa", possibly the wildest and most dancefloor friendly version of this classic tune from Manu Dibangu, who fused jazz and African riddims with his funky saxophone. The hot Afro-Soul tune "Soul Makossa" was a hit worldwide, spawning some 40 cover versions including the one by Jablonski. And then there's Jimmy London's reggae version of the Everly Brothers' classic hit tune "Cathy's Clown", a nice tune but not exactly fitting the mood of this release.
This 10inch might not be a reggae fanatics' cup of tea, but it is real good music worth of hearing.

Teacher & Mr. T.