Since nearly the very beginning I ‘n’ I have harvested all the various Halloween tunes found in Reggae music.
<25+ Years of Jah-loween on 29 Years of Smile Jamaica; 24 sec.>
Over the 3 decades of Reggae Radio my Devil’s menagerie has grown to 2 60-CD suitcases, a crate full of vinyl, a box full of 7″.
About a decade ago, I started hacking up horror bytes, movie trailers and Jah-loween intros. Then like Dr. Frankenstein in his laboratory, I hunker down in my Secret Dubratory and stitch it all together.
It’s alive! It’s alive!
So now enjoy this look back to all Hallow’s Eve and admire how Horror Reggae fits the Season. 11 sec.
Jah-tober 20th Smile Jamaica, livicated to the late great Peter Tosh – born Oct. 19, 1947.
Jah-tober is Jah-loween on Smile Jamaica,
Peter was at the pinnacle of the masses of Reggae songs devoted to the Halloween menagerie: vampires, ghosts (duppies in Jamaica), witches, mummies, anti-Christs, zombies and general evil. I and I have hundreds of Jah-loween tunes on CD, black wax: LP, 12″, 10″ and 7″.
Peter’s additions to the canon?
Mark of the Beast – about his brutal beating at the hands of Jamaican cops
Jumbie Jamboree – ska update of a classic soca song about the cousin of the duppy – jumbies.
With the Wailers: Mr. Brown (who drives around in a coffin) and Duppy Conqueror.
There is one more….
My very first Reggae LP was Peter Tosh – Wanted Dread & Alive; Christmas 1981. Thanks mom!
I was very happy to be cratedigging in SLC, at Get In Here Records I scored the above 12″ black wax aboved.
Tosh’s tragic end belied an “Omen”. I had just got into Reggae bigly as 45 would say around Sept. ’86. A year later I was working at Graywhale CD and used my employee discount to buy 2 CDs:
Ramones – Halfway to Sanity
Peter Tosh – No Nuclear War.
I think the Tosh album dropped on Sept. 3, 1987. On Sept. 12, I remember going to the SLC airport to pick up my sister off the plane. On page 2 of the paper that morning:
Reggae singer Peter Tosh killed in Jamaica.
Peter Tosh dead on, …wait for it: Sept. 11.
Peter the mystic did not go quietly to Jah’s Heavenly Choir. He got his “revenge” on his birthday that year: Oct. 19, 1987:
<Peter Tosh murder: Sept. 11, 1987. Black Monday – Oct. 19, 1987; 75 sec.>
Black Monday was the worst stock market collapse since the Great Depression. Only, since, eclipsed by the Great Recession of 2008.
Dow Jones stock market lost 22.6% of its valuation in one day. Peter Tosh exacted his revenge against the “shystem” in A-sad-ica. Because for the poor there is nothing “merry” about America.
Happy Birthday to the Stepping Razor: #PeterTosh. Murdered on 9/11 '87. Crashed the stock market from beyond on his birthday. 10/19/87 #BlackMonday. Chanting down the shytstem in A-sad-ica b/c for the poor, there is nothing "merry" in America pic.twitter.com/QjNWMBvwse
It was October 2003. My bredrin Grizzlite and I headed up to Park City to catch one of my favorites from the 90’s: Lucky Dube. Terrific South African roots singer in the era of apartheid.
A huge favorite with the Pacific Islander community, the club was packed. Everyone singing along on a cool fall night in the mountains.
Grizz and I got a beer and angled ourselves and positioned ourselves on the patio with a view of the stage. Everyone bumping along to Lucky’s melodic Peter Tosh-esque vocals.
All of a sudden the packed dance floor scattered and the music screeched to a halt. A youth had been shot. Later I found out it was a gang assassination. Tribal war in the Polynesian community. Assassins were dispatched from California. They knew their target would be out in the open and vulnerable at a must see event: Lucky Dube is on a par with Bob Marley among the Island community.
Before we knew it, the paramedics had wheeled the victim pass Grizz and I on a gurney. One of the EMT’s was straddling his chest doing CPR. Right next to me, a massive Island dready stepped up and punched the dying man in the face, caving in his nose.
<All Treats! No Tricks! – Smile Jamaica Loves Halloween>
It’s Fall and winter is coming. So that means October is Jah-loween Season on Smile Jamaica. The ghouls , witches and vampires doing rub a dub in the boneyard.
Half the set is devoted to instead of the usual’s King’s Music. Now it’s the Devil’s turn. Scratch. As in Lee “Scratch” Perry. Half the show devoted to the Witching Season: Best of 27 Years (the early discoveries in ’89-90), vinyl, 7″ Jamaican Jukebox and the undead and of course MUTANT dub
Don’t get stoned on my tombstone!
bless, I mean curse, robt
Lord Creator – Such Is Life; Heart of the Ark vol. 2 (Seven Leaf) ’78 UK vinyl: Lee Perry/Black Ark prod’n
Chalawa – Exodus Dub; (Micron) ’77 Can. Dub Album of the Hour to Marley’s Exodus
Peter Broggs – Pick Up the Reggae; Rastafari Liveth! (RAS) ‘82
Lee Perry – Jungle Lion; 300% Dynamite (Soul Jazz) ’73 instrumental
Dennis Bovell – Living in Babylon; Babylon Soundtrack (EMI) ‘80
Bushman – Backweh Vampire; 10” EP (Stingray) 2012 UK EP Jah-loween tune
Lovejoys – One Draw; Lovers Rock Showcase (Wackies) ’83 female duo on Rita Marley’s herbtune: 4:20 Cannabis Service Announcement
Peter Tosh – Black Dignity; Honorary Citizens: Jamaican Singles (Columbia) ’69 rarity
Trinity – Vampire; Dancehall 2 (Soul Jazz) ‘79
Jennifer Gad – Babylon Must Fall; Solid Foundation (Flag) ‘92
Dennis Brown & the Observers – Live After You; 10” (Observer Gold) ’75 Niney prod’n
Set 3: Best of Smile Jamaica 27 Years – Jah-loween Set; 11 sec.