The Way It Is
I Kong
VP Records
December 4, 2006

I Kong - The Way It Is Track list
  1. Ghetto Cry
  2. Life's Road
  3. Wolves In Sheep's Clothing
  4. Babylon Walls
  5. Set Black People Free
  6. Sinner Man
  7. I Wish (We'll All Be Ready)
  8. The Way It Is
  9. Life's Road Dub (Bonus Track)
  10. Babylon Walls Dub (Bonus Track)
  11. Set Black People Free Dub (Bonus Track)
  12. Sinner Man Dub (Bonus Track)
  13. I Wish (We'll All Be Ready) Dub (Bonus Track)
  14. The Way It Is Dub (Bonus Track)
  15. Love Was Dub (Bonus Track)
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4 Backing : 4/5 Production : 4 Sound quality : 4 Sleeve : 3/4
Errol Kong a.k.a. I Kong, the cousin of legendary reggae producer Leslie Kong (Beverly’s Records), was born in Kingston, Jamaica, where he grew up with the reggae music. In his youth he was a founding member of The Jamaicans (which included Tommy Cowan) and recorded the smash hit "Ba Ba Boom" for Duke Reid. In 1972 his first solo single was released on Tommy Cowan's Top Cat label as Ricky Storm. By 1978 I Kong had recorded his only album, "The Way It Is", which featured the hit single "Ghetto Cry", presented here along with dub versions of most of the tracks.

After 28 years I Kong's debut set is finally released on cd, complete with the already mentioned 7 (new) bonus tracks. For an artist like I Kong, who only recorded one album, as well as for I Kong fans this is a real treat. Besides that we now can also enjoy the dub versions of these classic tunes from the 70's. "The Way It Is" opens with the hit single Ghetto Cry, about the harsh life in the Ghetto, followed by Life's Road with its real nice guitar picking. The bongo Babylon Walls brings back nice memories of this awesome tune against Babylon. The mid-tempo roots tune I Wish (We'll All Be Ready) is also one of the outstanding songs in which I Kong tells us about life, while the title track The Way It Is is a real relaxing song.

Then we come to the dub side of things with the dubbed up version of Life's Road. The bongo drums of Babylon Walls thunder once again in the fine dub version of this track. The Way It Is Dub delivers us an even more relaxing version of the original tune. The closing track of this rerelease is the only totally new tune around, Love Was Dub, which happens to be a great finishing touch. Even if you happen to own the original LP from 1978 it's worth to buy this renewed version.

If you love the roots music from the 70's this is definitely one for you!