Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Pressure Cooker Dub Versions Available for FREE Download

In 2006 the Boston, Massachusetts reggae band Pressure Cooker released their fifth album Future’s History. Three years later in 2009, whilst doing a show in Toulouse, France, UK DJ Tom Uplifter of the Uplifter Sound System heard the album and was so taken aback with it he contacted the band about the possibility of creating new versions for his “Dub to Dubstep” winter tour.

Pressure Cooker teamed up with Craig “Dubfader” Welsch to mix two fresh new dubs for both the Uplifter Sound System and their fans with a special internet promo release! You can download the two new tracks free and more by visiting The Pressure Cooker website

Roger Rivas Organ Versions Vol.2

Back in the summer of 2009 Roger released 5 free tracks for download titled Organ Versions Vol.1. Well it appears he received so much positive feedback that has decided to repeat this act with another 5 shots of classic boss reggae sounds.

“This time around I got to sit with some collectors and DJs I really admire. Mark Morales from L.A is the reggae teacher. Always bringing out tunes never before heard! Jurassic sound is like no other! Brazil meets Jamaica! ”

So click on the pic and put your braces together its time for Versions Vol.2….


Friday, March 25, 2011


THE LONDON INTERNATIONAL SKA FESTIVAL at The Clapham Grand Theatre, 21-25 St John's Hill, Clapham Junction, London is fast approaching taking place over the Easter weekend of Thursday 21st to Sunday 24th April 2011, with a line-up that runs as follows:

Thursday 21st April'11 - doors 7pm-3am
DJs Rhoda Dakar (The Bodysnatachers/Special AKA) & Takeshi Okawa (Ska Flames) Club night: Tommy Rock-A-Shacka meets Clive Chin (Randys)

Friday 22nd April'11 - doors 7pm-3am
DJs Jim Cox & Greedy G Club night: Gaz Mayall (Gazs Rockin Blues)

Saturday 23rd April'11 - doors 7pm-3am
DJs Felix Hall & one more tba Club night: Lynval Golding (The Specials) & Wrongtom's Ska Revue

Sunday 24th April'11 - doors 7pm-2am
DJs Mark Lamarr & The Tighten Up Crew ft. Champian MC Club night: Dub Vendor All-stars w/ Papa Face & Oxman

Tickets are selling well and some are still available from so get in now!

Also DJ Greedy G has mixed up a fantastic official podcast for the event available here and you can also hear his Ska Scorchers mix Pt1 here

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Play Music Selecta!

There are 2 Big new singles coming out on Scotch Bonnet Records featuring Little John, Jah Thomas, Sugar Minott , Lady Anne and Ranking Levy, with production by Mungo's Hi Fi, Kalbata and RSD.
These awesome releases, due out on April 14th, will be available as 180g 12” vinyls and digital format. Their style is in the rub-a-dub fashion, but they have been blended using modern mixing and production techniques to make them bang up-to-date but without loosing that classic feel.
As you would expect both releases are heavy on the bass with the first EP featuring a remix from Mungo's of seasoned dancehall veterans Little John & Jah Thomas with ‘Play Music Selecta’ and then an RSD cut of Little John’s ‘Sugar Plum Plum’. Both vocal tracks were originally recorded in Jamaica for Kalbata and Mixmonster's fully analogue original 'Sugar Plum' release on Soul Jazz and to complete the release there is also an RSD instrumental work out of ‘Sugar Plum’.
The second EP is solely Mungo’s featuring the vocal talents of the late Sugar Minott with the hauntingly prophetic track ‘Got To Make Tracks’, voiced in Scotland shortly before his passing. Then there is Kingston 13’s Lady Ann giving rough and tough ragamuffin chat to the love song ‘Doctor Doctor’ while Israeli Ranking Levy adds a classic dancehall vibe in the style of Big Youth on ‘New York Boogie’ before again the EP is topped off with an instrumental.
Go Listen to the tracks on Soundcloud or on youtube SCOB024 SCOB025 now!!

Also available now at Mixcloud to listen to is a live session recorded on January 28th at Nantes Dub Station in France from Mungos Hi Fi with vocalists Marina P, YT, Solo Banton and Kenny Knots. Although only recorded on an ambient mic the sound quality is pretty good and well worth checking out.
SCOB024 Play Music Selecta EP1
Kalbata ft. Little John & Jah Thomas - Play Music Selecta (Mungo's Rmx)
Kalbata & Mixmonsta ft. Little John - Sugar Plum Plum (RSD Remix)
RSD - Sugar Plum Instrumental
SCOB025 Play Music Selecta EP2
Mungo's Hi Fi ft. Lady Ann - Doctor Doctor
Mungo's Hi Fi ft. Sugar Minott - Got to make tracks
Mungo's Hi Fi ft. Ranking Levy - New York Boogie
Mungo's Hi Fi - Play Dub Selecta

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Smiley Culture Dies In Police Raid

Yesterday (Tuesday 15th March 2011) it was reported by numerous sources that the pioneering British deejay Smiley Culture, real name David Emmanuel, had died during a police raid at his home in Warlingham Surrey, south east England.
According to BBC News he died of a suspected stab wound, though at this present time it is unclear how this injury was sustained and the incident is now under investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

Smiley first found fame in 1984 with ‘Police Officer’ which reached number 12 in the UK charts. His other singles included ‘Cockney Translation’ and ‘Schooltime Chronicle’
In an interview with the Guardian last year, he spoke of his time in the music business and his musical legacy.

"Police Officer was a true story – the police used to take my weed," he said. "It was better than being arrested and I made that into a hit. With Cockney Translation, I was a black man talking cockney. I integrated cultures even though I didn't understand it at the time. I was invited to meet the Queen, who said she listened to my records in the palace.
Although I paved the way for people like the Streets and Dizzee Rascal, I left the music business because I wasn't rich."

Smiley was a bubbly personality and great story teller and also one of the first wave of UK talents like Maxi Priest, Tippa Irie and Aswad, to cross over to the mainstream. Some may think his songs a bit corny but they were full of fun and are certainly fondly remembered here at Springline, indeed ‘Police Officer’ is still a firm favorite at the Notting Hill carnival, where it is guaranteed to get the party rockin’!

We pass on our deepest condolences to his family and friends at this tragic time.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The One Love Festival Returns To The UK At Wembley Arena

It is 10years since the last One Love Festival was held in the UK and now to to celebrate the life and times of Bob Marley on the 30th anniversary of his death it returns to the Wembley Arena on Sunday 31st July.

This all-day festival will commemorate Bob Marley’s untimely passing in 1981 aged just 36, and pay homage to his musical legacy with a series of themed sets from a host of international superstars, including legendary rap star Busta Rhymes who will headline the event in a UK festival exclusive.

Also on the bill will be Grammy-award-winning superstars Shaggy and Sean Paul and man of the moment Gyptian, as well as roots royalty Aswad plus an appearance by Marley’s son Ky Mani Marley who will be performing a selection of his father’s greatest hits including ‘No Woman, No Cry’ and ‘One Love’.

Other reggae acts appearing on the day include the Godfather of Lover’s Rock John Holt, Third World, conscious newcomer Natty King, Jamaican born DJ Trinity, roots-soul songstress Etana and prolific vocalist Wayne Wade appearing in the UK for the first time.

Another act worth a mention is one of the UK’s most vibrant urban acts the Grime stalwart Skepta. Further artists performing are hoped to be announced soon, but it is already shaping up to be one of the best festivals of the year!

Tickets are now on sale and are available from Wembley Box office,,,, with prices starting at £35.

Thursday, March 10, 2011


When you think of British reggae from the late ‘70s and early ‘80s people like Aswad and Misty in Roots who came from Ladbroke Grove and Southall in London respectively or Steel Pulse who were from Handsworth in Birmingham seem to take all the plaudits, but over in South West England there was, as the title of this LP would suggest, also something of a reggae explosion happening in Bristol and this album, on Bristol Archive Records goes a long long way to highlight some of the bands from that area that did not perhaps get the recognition that they deserved.
The first band up is Black Roots with ‘Bristol Rock’ a mighty slice of UK roots styled reggae plus plus in the fold are Juvenile Delinquent’ and a 12” mix of ‘Tribal War’, both of which carry on in the same excellent vein, with strong melodies, potent harmonies and rock solid bass lines. Believe it or not this band apparently throughout their career recorded no less than ten albums and released more than eight singles before bowing out of the public eye in the mid-90's so why oh why is it I have never heard of this group before!
Another band featured heavily is the multi cultural Talisman with two live tracks recorded on the main stage at Glastonbury in 1980 and a 12” dubwise version excursion mix of their first single ‘Dole Age’, which originally saw release on Recreational Records in 1981.
Restriction are another one of those bands who unfortunately only ever had one release a four track 12” in 1983. It was mixed and engineered however by Mad Professor at his Ariwa Studio in London and the two tracks taken from that EP are the deejay lavishness of’Four Point Plan’ and something of an easy going, echo laden, self titled theme tune. It is not all about the dread and heavy reggae though as Sharon Bengamin pops up with a lush not sloppy lovers track in the mould of Janet Kay with ‘Mr Guy’. That said if there is one reason to by this album it is for Joshua Moses’ ‘Africa Is Our Land’, which is undeniably a roots classic to match anything from Jamaica.
I can’t recommend this album highly enough every track shines bright and Bristol Archive Records should be duely comended for putting this together and showing what we have sorley missed from Bristol’s vibrant reggae scene.
Buy on vinyl or CD direct from Bristol Archive Records

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Maroon Town, who are soon to found be appearing at the London Ska Festival, have been peddling their ultra radio friendly blend of brass bustin’ ska, infused with Latin beats and rap since 1988 when they first struck out with their debut single a version of Prince Buster’s ‘City Riot’. Since then they have travelled the globe playing in places as diverse as Brazil, India, Jamaica, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, Sri Lanka, Venezuela, Argentina and Indonesia as well as all over Europe.
This new…..well nearly new album continues to encapsulate their sound and it could easily slip into the mainstream market especially with its opening salvo the very boisterous booze fuelled chant along ‘Ya Ya (Lemme Tell Dem)’. ‘Latin Moshpit’ is another pacey workout which knocks on the door of Ricky Martin ‘She Bangs’ territory, though there is no denying that those funky Latin beats are infectious and soon win you over, plus there is more chant along madness on the amusing 'Wreckless', which features Eastend MC trio, the Wreckless Crew.
Interspersed and putting some brakes on all this high tempo early frivolity is the sultry rocksteady, pop groove of ‘Lion’ and some jazzy coolness on ‘Bella Cosa’.
Now here is where we get to my point of…nearly new…as up pops ‘Are You Ready’, ‘Bullit’, ‘Innocent Mind’ and ‘Clarendon Calling’ from 1997’s Don Drummond with the latter two replacing the male rapped vocals for those sung by a smooth and soulful lady. They then go even further back to give you their cover of the Herbie Hancock jazz standard ‘Watermelon Man’ from 1995’s New Dimension. Now if you are a hardened fan of Maroon Town and already own both of these albums you may feel a little cheated by this fact, but if you haven’t then this will not be a problem because despite all these age differences between songs they all easily fit together to create a vibrant album that has plenty of feel good factor about it and one that I feel that with a few months to go could build into one of the party albums of the summer.

CD available at Rockers Revolt

Tempo Explosion

Originally released in 1985 on the Black Victory label this rare album is to see the light of day courtesy of Dug Out.

Produced by Bullwackie & Sugar Minott this one riddim album plays on versions of King Tubby's classic Tempo riddim and is regarded by many as one of the greatest one-riddim LP’s of all time.
Minott takes the mic on opener ‘Devil Is At Large’ and this is followed by three more superb vocal cuts from Chris Wayne, Willie Williams and Ras Menlik Dacosta

Renowned saxoponist Jerry Johnson appears on the first of four instrumental cuts, which originally made up the ‘B’side with the final three all being played by The Black Roots Players who also supplied backing on Sugar Minott’s classic 80’s ‘A True’, ‘Rydim’ and ‘Time Longer Than Rope’ albums.

This album with its meticulous and mesmerising mix of electronic and analogue techniques that is sure to appeal to fans and collectors of the digital revolution that took place within 1980’s reggae.

Available at

Honest Jons
Hard Wax
Dub Vendor LP CD

Playlist :

Sugar Minott - Devil Is At Large
Chris Wayne - Dont Worry Yourself
Willie Williams - Solid Rock I Stand
Ras Menilik Dacosta - Free South Africa
Jerry Johnson - Tribute To Prince Knight
The Black Roots Players - Temp Dub
The Black Roots Players - Slow Tempo
The Black Roots Players - Up Tempo


Charles Bradley - The Story Behind The Man

Just the other month I reviewed the fantastic debut album from Charles Bradley, ‘No Time For Dreaming’. Now to follow this up is a short biography on the singer that gives you some idea in to where all the emotion that appears on that record has come from…

Charles Bradley is no stranger to hard times. Born in Gainesville, Florida in 1948 and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Charles spent the better part of his childhood living on the streets. One of the more optimistic moments of his childhood came in 1962, when his sister took him to see James Brown at The Apollo. Brown’s energy formed a lasting impression on Charles. He went home and immediately began practicing microphone tricks with a broom attached to a string, imitating the Godfather’s every move. With his newfound inspiration came an urgent desire to get off the streets and make something of himself.

Charles made his way out of Brooklyn via Job Corps, a federal program for helping underprivileged families. His job placement took him to Bar Harbor, Maine where he learned to cook. While in Maine, he put together a band and began to pursue his passion for performing. He had his first taste of the stage when he was asked to perform for some female employees of Job Corps in Poland Springs. The ladies went wild and Charles knew that he was destined to be an entertainer. Unfortunately, his fate was put on hold when his band mates were drafted in the Vietnam War, and he was forced to find work as a chef in Wassaic, New York at a hospital for the mentally ill.

After nine years cooking for 3500 people a day, being harassed by local police officers, and having no musical outlet, Charles decided to leave Wassaic and head west in search of a dream. He had saved up enough money to buy a new Ford but soon realized that he couldn't keep up with the payments; he promptly returned it to a dealer and began hitchhiking. He caught rides all the way from New York to California and up through Canada. He persevered through the dangers of the road (including one driver who confided in him that he had just killed his wife and children) and eventually landed in Alaska where he once again found work as a chef. Though the job paid well, he was not well liked by his fellow chefs, and soon made his way back to California via airplane.
Charles spent over 20 years in California, making his living as a chef, all the while playing music on the side. He had no regular band, but he played pick-up gigs when they came along and sat in on recording sessions to feed his musical cravings. Things seemed to be looking up for Charles, but just as he was about to put a down payment on his first house, he was laid-off from his job of 17 years. Being fired forced him to re-evaluate his life out west. Ultimately, he decided to come home to Bushwick, Brooklyn to be with his family again. Charles took every penny he had saved, loaded up a truck with the musical equipment he collected over the years, and drove back to New York. At this point, he was fed up with the tribulations of being a chef and took up work as a handyman to allow himself the flexibility to pursue his musical career.

Charles finally found an audience when he began making appearances in local Brooklyn clubs performing his James Brown routines under the alter ego "Black Velvet". At 51, he was finally making a life for himself back home. His musical career was moving forward, but he was to be tested once again.

Charles awoke in his mother’s house one morning to the sounds of police sirens. He was devastated to find that his brother had been shot and killed by his nephew. Life did not seem worth living anymore.

Charles was down and out when Gabriel Roth of Daptone Records happened upon him performing his Black Velvet act at the Tarheel Lounge in Bedstuy. Roth recognized his raw talent and directly brought him into the Daptone "House Of Soul" Studios for a session with the Sugarman 3. "Take It As It Comes" was Charles' first single on Daptone and it proved him as a worthy vocalist. Roth eventually brought Charles out to Staten Island to see Dirt Rifle and the Bullets, a young funk band playing James Brown and Meters influenced songs. Thomas Brenneck, songwriter and guitarist for the Bullets, hit it off with Charles and they began working together. They released two singles on Daptone under the name "Charles Bradley And The Bullets", but the Bullets soon dismantled in order to form the afrobeat influenced Budos Band.

However, Brenneck knew that Charles had something more to give and after moving to Bushwick himself, he and Charles reunited. In time, they became close friends and Charles confided his life story in Brenneck. The young producer was moved when he heard Charles tell the painful story of his brother’s death. Brenneck said, "Charles, we gotta put that story to music". Brenneck had put together a small bedroom studio and was working on instrumentals with a new group soon to be named Menahan Street Band. His new sound was the perfect compliment for the heartfelt and troubled lyrics that sprang from Charles' story. Brenneck had just launched Dunham Records, a division of Daptone, and would release Charles' "The World (Is Going Up In Flames)" and "Heartaches And Pain" as it’s second single. A departure from his Black Velvet act, the songs showed a new side of Charles as a compelling artist in his own right and proved to be a great success. Many late night writing and recording sessions later, he and Brenneck completed their first full-length record, "No Time For Dreaming". Charles always knew he was born to entertain, but in the making of this record he discovered a proclivity for songwriting as well.
The record was a labor of love for both Charles and Brenneck. After years of working together, "No Time For Dreaming" is due for international release on Dunham Records. In the meantime, Charles has been touring with The Menahan Street Band and honing his passion as a singer and an entertainer. If you know Charles today, then you know one of the most loving, humble, honest and genuine human beings you will ever know. Charles Bradley spent most of his life dreaming for a better one, and now there is no more time for dreaming, just time for singing, dancing and loving.

You can buy "No Time For Dreaming" from Play and many other good outlets..