D.B.C. (Dread Broadcasting Corporation) was started in 1981 initially as an afternoon activity to play music to brighten up boring Sunday afternoons. The main reason - to increase the exposure of Reggae music. DJ Lepke, having acquired a MW transmitter, broadcasted from his Neasden back garden, but due to the weak signal didn't get very far (but far enough to create a buzz in the vicinity). When an FM rig (that worked) was finally obtained the range broadened and regular weekly transmissions began each and every Friday. The station grew as friends and supporters got involved and a regular broadcasting structure was created which went further than transmitting Reggae, as RnB, Soca, Soul, Funk, African and other black music was given an airing by young names such as Lloyd Bradley, Neney Cherry, Rankin Miss P and Lepke himself. D.B.C went from strength to strength with a strong station identity, using jingles (made in-house), adverts for local businesses and by developing a range of merchandise (T shirts etc). D.B.C. spawned many other Pirate stations, some of which went on to gain legality when the broadcasting authorities bowed to public pressure to issue licences.
Teacher & Mr. T.
Now Trojan comes up with a fine collection of tunes dedicated to the first black run radio station in the U.K., whose eclectic mix of music turned on an entire generation who had been ranking enough to tune in. This double-cd set more or less follows the typical format of an inner London pirate station. Thus the listener is first treated to up tempo early 80's reggae dancehall, which is then followed by meditative roots reggae. Disc two starts with some 50's style doo wop, R&B inna Jamaican stylee and ska, then returning to the sounds of the 80's. In order to stick close to the original D.B.C. broadcast, jingles and ads have been added. Apart from the inclusion of a few very obvious tunes from Burning Spear, Peter Tosh, Junior Byles, Johnny Clarke and Cocoa Tea, the compilers have included a notable amount of relative obscurities. Among the interesting as well as entertaining stuff to listen to on disc one are the old Aswad Simba 12" version of "Warrior Charge", Sugar Minott's "Dancehall We Deh", Papa Levi's deeply innovative UK reggae toast, "Mi God Mi King", Phyllis Dillon's roots version of Marlena Shaw's overpowering funk tune, "Woman Of The Ghetto", the instrumental "Leaving Rome" by Jo Jo Bennett & Mudies All Stars, and Freddie McGregor's awesome "Rastaman Camp". Disc two has its high points with Pat Kelly's beautiful reworking of The Casinos "Then you can Tell Me Goodbye", Theo Beckford's "Easy Snappin", Keith and Enid's "Worried over You", The Soul Sisters' "Wreck A Buddy", Errol Dunkley's "You'll Never Know (I'll Be Back)", Don Carlos' "Dice Cup" and "Rub A Dub Soldier" by Paul Blake & The Blood Fire Posse. The latter is of particular interest as this tune was one of their two pioneering semi-computerized hits of 1984, which closely anticipated the sound of digital ragga that made a serious impact in the second half of the 80's.
"Dread Broadcast Corp. - Rebel Radio" is a well varied vintage set that has something to offer for everyone's taste.