Can I Change My Mind Riddim EP
Musical Ambassador Productions
Digital Release
May 5, 2016

Track list
  1. Karen Schloss - Can I Change My Mind
  2. Noddy Virtue - Permanent Screw
  3. Patrick Billings - Four Seasons Of Love
  4. Vernon Maytone - Too Much Blame Vernon
  5. Sons Of Mystro - This Feels Like Heaven
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 4/5 Backing : 4/5 Production : 4/5 Sound quality : 5 Sleeve : 4/5
Out of Florida comes a nice EP with an handful of tunes across the "Can I Change My Mind" riddim. The reggae community remembers this one as a '60s hit tune out of Studio One by Alton Ellis. The original however is a 1968 single recorded by soul singer Tyrone Davis. It was his featured debut and in early 1969 replaced Marvin Gaye's "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" to become the number-one song on the Billboard Hot R&B Singles chart.

The tunes are produced by Trevor Elliott, a veteran reggae music producer, who has worked with the likes of Edi Fitzroy, Horace Martin, Bob Andy, Sugar Minott, Tony Tuff, Johnny Ringo and Michael Prophet. He's also known for working on classic reggae films like "The Harder They Come" and "Children Of Babylon". From the end of the '70s on he released his productions on his label Musical Ambassador. He recently 'revived' the label and describes his productions as: "My products are authentic Roots Reggae backed by the best musicians like Roots Radics and the award winning Sly & Robbie."

The producer stays pretty close to the original tune and arrangement, performed by a tight backing band. First comes Karen Schloss out of the UK who does a straightforward rendition of the Alton Ellis classic. Her polished vocal delivery makes this remake as smooth as silk. Noddy Virtue is reggae singer in the classic mold of artists like Freddie McGregor, Dennis Brown and John Holt. His lovers tune tells us that he wears a "Permanent Screw" since he lost his love. Nice cut! Florida based Patrick Billings does a solid lovers version of the riddim, but Vernon Maytone brings us a truly outstanding version with the roots tune "Too Much Blame Vernon". The last tune is an instrumental cut from two brothers, Malcolm and Umoja McNeish, aka Sons Of Mystro. They are violin players and their version tends a little too much to muzak, and thus strictly for fans!

Great riddim and some nice versions!