Album review
Music & Me
Tony Chin
Underdog Records

Tracking list

  1. Guns Don't Argue
  2. Stop That Train
  3. Girls Be Good
  4. Pretty Woman
  5. Angel
  6. African
  7. Rise Up
  8. Fussing & Fighting
  9. Mr. Babylon
  10. Jah Rule
  11. Fire Burn
  12. Dream Land
  13. Hold On To Love
  14. Music And Me
  15. Nah Give Up
  16. Freedom Fighters
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

Vocals : 4 Backing : 4 Production : 4 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 3/4

Jamaican rhythm guitarist Tony Chin joined bassist Fully Fullwood around 1967 to form their first band, The Riddim Raiders. In 1970 Chinna Smith came in as their lead guitarist and Santa Davis replaced Horsemouth Wallace as their drummer. After changing their name to The Soul Syndicate they started doing sessions for Bunny Lee, backing artists such as Delroy Wilson, Cornell Campbell, Slim Smith and Johnny Clarke. For producer Phil Pratt they recorded with artists such as John Holt, Gregory Isaacs, Dennis Brown and Pat Kelly. During the seventies they were involded in numerous recordings for the leading producers of that time. The list of artists for which they provided the backing is endlessly. One of reggae's most enduring riddims, Stalag, was done by The Soul Syndicate. Furthermore they also did some of Lee Perry sessions with Bob Marley and The Wailers. In 1981 Tony moved to America, where he teamed up with the reggae pop band 'Big Mountain' giving the band the authentic reggae riddim sound. Today you can find Tony Chin (alongside Fully Fullwood) backing major artists on the reggae festivals.
His debut album on 'Underdog Records' features some 16 tracks, ranging from roots to lovers tunes. Although Tony has been writing songs for 20 years, it's untill now that he has taken time to work out his music. Most of the tunes are self penned songs, except for the opening track Guns Don't Argue which was originally done by Prince Buster, Stop That Train from Keith & Tex and the wonderful Dream Land which was written by Bunny Wailer.
Besides the fact that Tony is a gifted guitar player, he is also blessed with a fine voice and he knows how to use it. Check out Hold On To Love and compare that one with Nah Give Up Love and you will know what we mean ! His compositions are mostly 'one-drop' stylee, and that gives the album a relaxed and sunny feel. The tunes here are melodic and some of them grab you and before you know you start humming them. The following tunes are highlights : Pretty Woman, African, Rise Up, Mr. Babylon and Nah Give Up.
The backing band is called The Soul Survivors band and includes Fully Fullwood, Santa Davis, Keith Sterling, Michael Hyde and Jawge Hughes.

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