Various artists album review
Trojan Jamaican Hits Box Set ~ Limited Edition
Triple CD box set
27 - 05 - 2000

Tracking list

    Disc 1 ~ 1960-1967
  1. Derrick Morgan - Fat Man
  2. The Mellow Lads - Time To Pray
  3. Eric Monty Morris - Humpty Dumpty
  4. Derrick Morgan & Patsy Todd - Housewives Choice
  5. Lloyd Brevett - One More Time
  6. Desmond Dekker - Honour Your Mother & Father
  7. Lord Tanamo - Come Down
  8. Carlos Malcolm & His Afro-Jamaican Rhythms - Bonanza Ska
  9. Stranger Cole & Patsy Dodd - Yeah Yeah Baby
  10. Winston Samuels - Be Prepared
  11. Joe White & Chuck - Every Night
  12. Justin Hinds & The Dominoes - Try Me
  13. Delroy Wilson - I'm In A Dancing Mood
  14. The Techniques - You Don't Care
  15. Roy Shirley - Hold Them
  16. The Paragons - Only A Smile
  17. The Kingstonians - Winey Winey
   Disc 2 ~ 1968-1969
  1. Ken Boothe - Lady With The Starlight
  2. The Maytals - 54 46 That's My Number
  3. Desmond Dekker & The Aces - Intensified 1968
  4. The Pioneers - Long Shot Kick De Bucket
  5. The Melodians - It Comes And Goes
  6. Rudy Mills - Long Story
  7. The Ethiopians - Everything Crash
  8. Stranger Cole & Lester Sterling - Bangarang
  9. Winston Delano - Dance With Me
  10. Bob Andy - Games People Play
  11. Slim Smith - Everybody Needs Love
  12. Roland Alphonso - A Thousand Tons Of Megaton
  13. Johnny Osbourne & The Sensations - Come Back Darling
  14. Pat Kelly - How Long
  15. Little Roy - Bongo Nyah
  16. The Hippy Boys - Doctor No Go
    Disc 3 ~ 1970-1973
  1. U Roy & John Holt - Wear You To The Ball
  2. Derrick Harriott & The Chosen Few - Psychedelic Train
  3. Carl Dawkins - Satisfaction
  4. Bob Marley & The Wailers - Trenchtown Rock
  5. John Holt - Stick By Me
  6. Willie Francis - Oh What A Mini
  7. The Fabulous Five - Come Back And Stay
  8. Lloyd Parks - Officially
  9. Ken Parker - Jimmy Brown
  10. The God Sons - Hurry Up
  11. Junior Byles - Beat Down Babylon
  12. Winston Scotland - Buttercup
  13. Jackie Brown - One Night Of Sin
  14. Alton Ellis - Big Bad Boy
  15. Brent Dowe - Build Me Up
  16. Big Youth - Cool Breeze
  17. Dennis Brown - Westbound Train
Rating : from 5 (excellent) to 1 (poor)

Vocals : 4 Backing : 4 Production : 4 Sound quality : 3/4 Sleeve : 3/4

Trojan Records continues to release "limited edition" triple cd box sets, which happen to be nicely packaged selections coming out of their extensive vaults. All the recordings included on this set appeared on the annual top 25 chart for one of Jamaica's premiere radio stations, JBC, from 1060 up until its final year, 1973.
Disc One features tracks from the period 1960 to 1967 and opens with Derrick Morgan's hugely popular Fat Man which in 1960 provided the singer with his first major hit. Eric Morris' Humpty Dumpty has often been accredited as the first real ska record. Further ska hits from the early sixties include Derrick and Patsy with Housewives Choice, Lord Tanamo's Come Down and Carlos Malcolm's superb reworking of the theme from the popular TV show Bonanza. By the spring of 1966 the beat slowed down and from this transitional period comes Delroy Wilson's ever popular seminal version of The Tams' Dancing Mood. By 1967 the rocksteady sound ruled and the style particularly suited vocal groups like the Paragons -Only A Smile- and The Techniques -You Don't Care-.
Disc Two shines on 1968 and 1969, starting off with one of the first major hits of 1968, Rudy Mills with Long Story. Rocksteady was showing signs of change. The percussion, in particular the hi-hat became increasingly prominent in the mix, while the languid rhythm guitar style previously favoured, was supplanted by a more aggressive, cutting technique. The final result was a jumpy style of music. Such developments are clearly evident on Dance With Me, and Everybody Needs Love. By 1969 the new style was given a new name :reggae. Early reggae hits from 1969 included Bob Andy's Games People Play, Come Back Darling by The Sensations and How Long by former Techniques' front man Pat Kelly.
The last disc covers the period 1970 to 1973 and opens with an artist who was the have a significant impact on the development of reggae : U Roy. He popularized the deejay style to a new level with tunes like Wear You To The Ball. 1971 proved a very successful year for The Wailers, with one of their best-selling singles of the year being Trenchtown Rock. Another artist who scored a number of hits during 1971 was former Pragaons' front man John Holt, featured here with Stick By Me. Lloyd Parks, who had previously sung with leading vocal groups The Termites and The Techniques, cut one of the biggest hits of 1972 with Officially. Junior Byles' Beat Down Babylon reflects the growing influence of Rastafarianism on Jamaican songwriters during the early seventies. The disc closes with two outstanding tracks : Cool Breeze from Big Youth and Westbound Train by Dennis Brown.
The 'Jamaican Hits Box Set' presents a great opportunity to trace the development of Jamaican music uptill 1973, but also to hear some of the most popular sounds of their day.

Teacher & Mr. T.