Gussie Presenting I Roy
I Roy
June 8, 2007

Track list
Disc 1
  1. Red Gold And Green
  2. Pusherman
  3. Black Man Time
  4. Smile Like An Angel
  5. Peace
  6. Coxsone Affairs
  7. Screw Face
  8. First Cut Is The Deepest
  9. Melinda
  10. Tourism Is My Business
  11. Tripe Girl
  12. Cow Town Skank
  13. Coxsone Time
  14. Sudden Flight
  15. Presenting I Roy
  16. Rival Warfare
  17. Education For Free
  18. Leggo Beast
  19. Magnificent Seven
  20. High Jacking
  21. Burning Passion
  22. King And The Pauper
  23. Clappers Tail
  24. Live And Learn
  25. Peace Can Solve It
Disc 2
  1. Ken Boothe - Black Gold And Green
  2. Lloyd Parks - Slaving (Every Day)
  3. Lloyd Parks - Slaving (Version)
  4. Glen Brown - South East Rock
  5. Glen Brown - No More Slavery
  6. Dennis brown - In Their Own Way (7" mix)
  7. Dennis brown - In Their Own (Version)
  8. Alton Ellis - Breaking Up
  9. Alton Ellis - Dub Wise To Break Your Heart
  10. Gregory Isaacs - Late At Night
  11. The Heptones - Tripe Girl
  12. Augustus Pablo - Cow Town Version/Fiat 125
  13. Simplicity People - Anywhere But Nowhere (Version)
  14. Roman Stewart - Try Me
  15. Augustus Pablo & Simplicity People - Stardum
  16. Simplicity People - No No No (Version)
  17. Augustus Pablo & Simplicity People - KG's (Half Way Tree)
  18. Augustus Pablo & Simplicity People - KG's (Cross Roads)
  19. Simplicity People - Murderer
  20. Gregory Isaacs - I Am Alrighty
  21. Old Boys Inc. - I Am Alright (Version)
  22. Ken Boothe - I'm Not For Sale
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 3 Backing : 3 Production : 3 Sound quality : 3 Sleeve : 4
"I have come to introduce some authentic musical disc as I would play" (I Roy : Coxsonne Affair)

Everyone has their own favourite DJ of the mid to late 70's, and each DJ had their own distinctive vibe -- Prince Jazbo, Big Youth, Tappa Zukie, Dr. Alimantado, U Roy and I Roy. To many listeners, U Roy and I Roy had a very similar style, and that is a contention this reviewer will not argue with.

The album will appeal on a number of levels -- it is ostensibly a re release of "Presenting I Roy" -- but it features about thirty first rate rare groove bonus cuts to the original release.

Yes, go on and count 'em -- thirty bonus cuts spread over a double CD set. No one can accuse Trojan of not giving value for money, whatever other complaints have been levelled against them over the years. The album collects all the versions from the likes of Glen Brown, Gregory Isaacs, Gussie Clarke, Augustus Pablo, Ken Boothe and more. So, the album is going to please all the completists, collecting as it does all these core artists on one double CD set.

(On the downside -- inevitably since it's a Trojan release -- then safely rest assured you will have many of these tunes collected on other compilations.)

On Disc One, "Black Man Time" features an atmospheric spoken intro, after a fumbled false start -- Gussie Clarke spars with I Roy, chatting about poverty and solutions, before an eerie, swirling violin melody introduces Glen Brown's "No More Slavery".

"Screw Face" versions one of the thunderous Pablo melodica Rockers tunes from "King Tubby Meets The Rockers Uptown". You also get about four or five cuts to the haunting, lonely yet oddly naive "Anywhere But Nowhere", originally by KC White. (Though please note, one of the cuts here has a truly horrible sound quality.)

On Disc two,there is seemingly endless run of versions of "No No No" added here -- Thought you'd had enough of the rhythm? Think again -- Some of the Augustus Pablo versions here are totally essential, each one differing in its focus : one cut centres in on bizarre, very European sounding Klezmer style violins, whilst another features funky Stevie Wonder style keyboard grooves, whilst other cuts home in on the ghostly vocals.

There are also versions here to "Stop The Gun Shooting"/ "Skylarking" with a harsh, slashing, percussive guitar groove scattered over the timbale tuned snares.

To those of you who define and limit their perceptions of Ken Boothe by "Everything I Own", you should think again -- Boothe recorded a number of early to mid period Roots Rockers styles -- In particular, the confident black nationalism of "Black Gold And Green", included here.

The re release is not as essential then, as Trojan's other two releases of the moment(Gregory Isaacs and Tommy McCook Meets The Aggrovators) -- but it will most surely prove essential listening to the Augustus Pablo, I Roy, K.C.White and Glen Brown completists amongst us, no doubt about that.