Lovers Rock Box Set ~ Limited Edition
Trojan Records
Triple CD Box Set
September 15, 2005

Track list
Disc 1

  1. Lovin' You - Janet Kay
  2. Unexpected Places - Hortense Ellis
  3. Please, Mr Please - June Powell
  4. Sad Movies (Make Me Cry) - Cynthia Schloss
  5. Nothing Gained (From Loving You) - Marie Pierre
  6. This Love Makes Me Happy (aka Cherish This Love) - Barbara Jones
  7. Born To Wondering - Audrey Hall
  8. That Wonderful Sound - Doreen Schaeffer
  9. Dynamic - Paula
  10. My Eyes Adored You - Betty Padget
  11. Feel Like Making Love (12" version) - Elizabeth Archer & The Equators
  12. If - Susan Cadogan
  13. Perfidia - Pam Hall
  14. When Love Comes Knocking (At Your Door) - Angela Stewart
  15. I Will - T.T. Ross
  16. If You Love Me (Let Me Know) - Yvonne Sterling
  17. I Can't Give You Anything (But My Love) (12" version) - The J Sisters
Disc 2

  1. Lover's Rock - Freddie McGregor
  2. Reflections In My Life - Barry Biggs & Ruddy Thomas
  3. Dim The Light - Winston Reedy
  4. Never Too Young (aka Let Love Come In) - Sugar Minott
  5. Getting Cosy (12" mix) - Fil Callender & The In Crowd
  6. Peek-A-Boo (12" mix) - Errol Dunkley
  7. What's The Use - Bunny Scott
  8. You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine - John Holt
  9. After Tonight - Matumbi
  10. Next To You - Gregory Isaacs
  11. A Little Love - Jimmy London
  12. You Are Mine (12" mix) - Honeyboy
  13. Whenever You Need Me - Cornell Campbell
  14. No Love (aka The Time Has Come) - Pat Kelly
  15. Telephone Line - Alton Ellis & Tony Sexton
  16. You're Everything To Me - Boris Gardiner
Disc 3

  1. 1. Silly Wasn't I (12" version) - Sharon Forrester
  2. 2. I'm Still In Love With You - Alton Ellis & Janet Kay
  3. 3. Together - Jennifer Day
  4. 4. Just Say You Will (Lonely Teardrops) - Pam Hall
  5. 5. I've Never Been To Me - Janette Silvera
  6. 6. Can't Go Through With Life (12" mix) - Marie Pierre
  7. 7. My Willow Tree - Hortense Ellis
  8. 8. Skip And Dance - Paula Clarke
  9. 9. Cha La La, I Need You - Cynthia Schloss
  10. 10. I Can Not Wait (No More) - Audrey Hall
  11. 11. The Power Of Love - Barbara Jones
  12. 12. Something's Gotten Hold Of My Heart - Jenny Taylor
  13. 13. There's No Me Without You - Marcia Griffiths
  14. 14. A Lover's Concerto - Dimple Hinds & The Marvels
  15. 15. Just Enough To Keep Me Hanging On - Carol Brown
  16. 16. I'll Be Everything To You (12" mix) - June Powell & The Hit Squad
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)
Vocals : 3 Backing : 4 Production : 4 Sound quality : 4 Sleeve : 1
In the macho, male dominated confines of the reggae world, with a wider audience still unduly preoccupied so it seems, with endlessly recycled, seriously well worn and overdone 'steppers and one drop' clichés -- lover's rock is usually sneered at.

Often, it has to be said, for some good reasons.

But is it all really that bad? Couldn't, for example, some of the great Bim Sherman's output be called lover's rock? (think tunes like "My Woman", "Memories", "Must Be A Dream" or "Lover's Leap.") How about some of Delroy Williams' Rockers cuts, such as "Learn"?

Is it really that easy to separate lovers from the rest of the reggae world -- and to write it off?

A lot of it is saccharine and schmaltzy, and the kitsch cover art here does little to contradict such an impression.

But having said that there are some fine cuts here amongst the dross -- check out disc three, Gregory Isaacs, "Next To You" in its full pounding, thundering surreal 12" disco mix. This dub is nothing short of weird -- it's very similar to the recent Taxi productions release on the Pressure Sounds label.

Also notable is the transcendent heights of Pat Kelly's "No Love" -- a plea for a more conscious society, with more time for righteousness and compassion. This is no 'lightweight' tune, but a song with deep vibes, with a hard drum structure and Congo Ashanti Roy/Cedric Myton style vocals. (The lyrics are very reminiscent of the old Blue Note r n’ b tune, "The Monkey Speaks His Mind.")

Also worthy of mention is the very English, very Ladbroke Grove circa 1977 sounding "After Tonight" from Matumbi , with its chilly, wintry sound.

Interesting too, is the "Reflections In My Life" by Ruddy Thomas and Barry Biggs, which is possibly adapted from a banal pop song -- but in their hands is transformed into an overtly lonely and regretful song, pointing to something much deeper, and outside the remit of the saccharine 'lovers' genre.

Hortense Ellis too, has a powerful, insightful lyricism and Elizabeth Archer's "Feel Like Making Love" will surely appeal to early ONU Sound /New Age Steppers followers with it's thunderous Eskimo Fox Rocker's drum pattern and Ari Up style vocal.

Make up your own mind then -- But some of this selection may surprise you and soften your cynicism about the wider genre.