Call it what you will, but come this time of year, the heat and humidity cause my brain to get a little wonky. It's a good thing I don't have hair, otherwise I could add big hair to my conundrum. However, despite the wonkiness of the season, I am able to get solace by playing some music that fits perfectly into this season. With that in mind, on this week's World Music Show (8/13), we'll get our Reggae vibes on by grooving to tracks from Bob & Ziggy Marley, Jimmy Cliff, Peter Tosh and more.
Plus, we'll sample some Roots Reggae Music as well as some classic Dub & Ska tunes from a few of the best, including Lee "Scratch" Perry and the Specials. Plus, we'll enter the world of A Different Spin--the program in which I invite local musicians into the studio to spin and talk about some of their favorite records. On this episode, I invite Mighty Joshua into the studio to not only talk and play his favorite music, but to discuss his trip to Kenya in which he's walking 150 miles for a good cause.
So, if you only think that Jamaica produced one style of music, think again. Reggae may have been one of that country's biggest exports, but this genre of music is only the tip of the iceberg. There's a whole sub-genre of styles, including Mento, Two-Tone, Rock-Steady, Dub and more. But let's start with some of the best. We'll go back in time to the year 1973 to hear a track from Bob Marley when he stopped by a radio station in San Francisco to play some of his music. We'll hear an earlier version of "Kinky Reggae."
Keeping in the vein of Reggae heavyweights, I'll pepper this first set with two other giants of the genre. In fact, it's a magical trifecta of Reggae! Combined with Bob Marley, will be a track from Jimmy Cliff, who'll do a track from the movie soundtrack "The Harder they Come," which helped make him an international star. It'll be the song "Sitting in Limbo." And mixed into the set as well will be a former member of the Wailers, but a gifted solo artist in his own right. I'm talking the late and great Peter Tosh. He'll do the song "Where You Gonna Run," off his CD Mama Africa.
Since we started the show with some classic Bob Marley, how about we start the next set with some new Ziggy Marley? Off his sixth, self-titled, studio album as a solo artist, I'll play Ziggy's song "Butterflies." I'll follow that with Ziggy Marley and Melody Makers with the title track to their CD, One Bright Day. And from the legendary and outspoken artist, Shabba Ranks, we'll hear his track "Mr. Loverman," off a greatest hits compilation called Rough & Ready, Vol. 1.
Earlier I mentioned a few of the sub-genres of Reggae. Here's a newer one that's getting more attention lately. The style is called Roots Reggae. And it's a bit hard to describe, but it's a tad more acoustic or folky. However, the style still retains some world beat along with Reggae sensibilities. Here's a couple of artists who are making their marks in this arena. First, from Hawaii, I'll play Buckman Coe. I'll follow that with the musician Nico Marks, who's from California.
Mixed into this set will be some classic Dub from one of the masters. We'll hear from Lee "Scratch" Perry with the track "Scratch, the Dub Organizer," off a CD filled with classic Dub music from a few of best who started the genre. Dub music is noted for raising the bass and treble on tracks as well as slowing it all down. Also in here too is a cover of the song "Pressure Drop," that features the original artist, Toots Hibbert of Toots and the Maytels, along with the jam band Gov't Mule.
To wind down the first hour, or maybe speed it up a bit, I'll play some Ska music. From their first CD, I'll play some tracks by the Specials, namely their songs "A Message to You Rudy," and their version of "Concrete Jungle," originally done by Bob Marley--which if you think about it is a nice bookend to the start of the show. And, I'll end the hour with two track by the band Madness. I really like this band---they're still playing around Great Britain I think (I mean, they opened up the last Olympic Games when they were in London). Off a Best Of CD, we'll hear the songs "One Step Beyond," and "Wings of a Dove."
In hour two of this week's show, I'll resurrect my segment called A Different Spin. It's my on-going segment in which I invite local musicians into the studio to play some of their favorite music, as well as their own. This week, I invited Mighty Joshua, who is a local Reggae artist and humanitarian. Right now, he's actually walking on a Proper Walk through the Kenyan Bush, along with about 7 others, traveling more than 150 miles on foot to bring attention to H.I.V pandemic in Sub-Saharan Africa. We'll talk about that along with a bunch of other things. Go to his website, mightyjoshua.com to find out more of what he's doing--it's really a cool thing.
The World Music Show airs every Saturday night from 8:00-10:00 p.m. on Richmond Public Radio, 88.9 WCVE. Get show updates, information and other fun tidbits on Facebook at The World Music Show on WCVE and on Twitter @wcveworldmusic.