Various artists album review
Dennis Brown & Friends
from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)|
|Vocals : 4/5||Backing : 4||Production : 5||Sound quality : 4/5||Sleeve : 4|
By now a year ago - on July 1st, 1999 - the unexpected passing of Dennis "Emanuel" Brown at the age of 42 brought sorrow to reggae music. His death shocked and saddened reggae followers worldwide. Dennis Brown can be reckoned to the small group of singers in Jamaican musical history who were also very talented and great songwriters and who were often credited to be of great influence for other singers around them. Being a star at a very early age - he was eleven or twelve when he started to record for Studio One - he has delivered some 70 albums and countless singles. Dennis Brown was equally at home with roots tunes and love songs, although he always sounded at his best when he performed a lovers tune.|
Three out of four Dennis Brown tracks on the very enjoyable compilation set "Dennis Brown & Friends" capture the singer in a lovers mood. Solid efforts which once again showcase Dennis' ability to deliver a smooth soulful vocal performance to full effect. A truly great tune - and one of our favourites - is the combination with R. Nilajah Benaiah, "A perfect start". The "friends" - with the exception of renown sax player Dean Fraser - are all fine singers in their own right, most of them involved in Reggae business for a long time. Just like the Dennis Brown tracks the majority of the remaining 12 tracks on this set consists of love songs with contributions from Sugar Minott, Tinga Stewart, Joseph Benaiah ("Tonight Is The Night"), the underrated Roman Stewart and Hopeton Lindo. Freddie McGregor delivers the awesome conscious tune "Nah Sell Out Di Ting" over a great steppers riddim with fine harmonies and horns. Also Mark Wonder's "Sign Of The Time" - some years ago released as a 7" single on "Zola & Zola" Records - happen to be a roots tune which is well worth spinning.
If you're looking for a well varied compilation set, which mainly emphasizes on lovers tunes delivered by fine singers, "Dennis Brown & Friends" is definitely one to check out!
Part of the proceeds from the sales of this CD will be donated to the family of Dennis Brown.