Earthman Connection
Baba Dread
October 4, 2014

Track list
  1. Trial And Crisis - Testing Of Faith
  2. Forward Jah Jah Children
  3. Fire Burning
  4. Piece Of The Action (Copie Copewell)
  5. Earthman Connection - Old Time Religion
  6. Ladder Of Progress
  7. Israel Be Wise (The Royals)
  8. Ship Sail, Sail Fast, Life Boat
  9. Dread So Attractive
  10. Mash Down Babylon (Winston Jarrett)
  11. Ethiopian Going Home
  12. National Music - Roots Rock Reggae
  13. How Long Jah?
  14. Chant Rasta Man (Knowledge)
  15. Sound Of Reality
  16. Give Praises
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4 Backing : 4 Production : 4 Sound quality : 4 Sleeve : 2
The second half of the 1970s saw the emergence of numerous talented cultural deejays, who offered commentaries on the ghetto sufferers' tribulations, history lessons from a black perspective, and the chanting of psalms. Deejays such as Ranking Joe, Josey Wales, Charlie Chaplin and U-Brown had honed their skills as live sound-system deejays before they went into the studio to record 7" singles and albums, which brought them international recognition. Also Baba Dread, whose name was changed to Zimbabwe Dread by Kingdom Records when the London-based record company released his "Earthman Connection" album under license from Tamoki-Wambesi-Dove in 1978, was a top sound-system deejay from the parish of Clarendon, Jamaica. However, unlike his aforementioned contemporaries he didn't achieve an international breakthrough.

Baba Dread entertained the audience with his lyrics during sound system sessions at local dances and Roy Cousins ensured that the deejay's flow was also cut in vinyl, which led to the release of "Earthman Connection". This reissue of Baba Dread's debut album on cd sees the addition of four vocal versions to his deejay cuts plus the inclusion of two tracks - "Forward Jah Jah Children" and "Give Praises" - that were not featured on the original vinyl LP. Backed by well crafted militant 'rockers style' riddims laid at Randy's Studio 17 by session bands like Soul Syndicate and the Revolutionaries, Baba Dread delivers compelling tunes from beginning to end. The deejay's style has a real nice melodic flow, which not only uplifts his recordings, but also makes listening to his tunes more pleasurable. It's good to have Copie Copewell's killer "Piece Of The Action" followed by Baba Dread's matching deejay cut "Earth Connection - Old Time Religon". The same goes for the pairing of The Royals' "Israel Be Wise" and Baba Dread's "Ship Sail, Sail Fast, Life Boat", while also having Knowledge's "Chant Rasta Man" before Sound Of Reality" drops is truly worthwhile. Besides the aforementioned tunes, it are tracks like "Forward Jah Jah Children", "Ladder Of Progress", "Dread So Attractive" and "How Long Jah?" that belong to our personal favourites.

With this incredible collection in mind, it's inexplicable that Baba Dread hasn't been given the opportunity to record more full length albums.