UK site Dancecrasher gives the lowdown on a new compilation of rare Studio 1 music called Sugar & Spice. Previously unreleased sides from Soul Vendors, The Termites, Nora Dean and Jackie Mittoo all make an appearance on this Japanese -issued album.
The collection is one of only a few licensed by Clement Sir Coxonne Dodd's son (Junior Doff), who is managing the Studio 1 estate after a court case in Jamaica restored some of his claim to the label legacy.
The voices and artwork of disabled Jamaicans are rarely heard. But this short documentary on the work of Astro Saulter – brother of filmmaker Storm Saulter, director of Better Must Come) – sheds light on the creative process of an artist who creates without hands. Astro, who was born with cerebral palsy, uses a head controlled computer program to generate his colorful work.
Read great, in-depth reggae articles and biographies by one of the genre's best scribes, Harry Hawks, at ReggaeCollector.com. Shabba Ranks, Max Romeo, Cedric 'im Brooks, Big Youth, Derrick Morgan, Aquarius and Volcano record labels and many more crucial figures are profiled by this talented wordsmith, whose work has graced liner notes for Greeensleeves and other labels.
Speaking of great labels, Donovan Germain's Penthouse Recordings is celebrating 25 years in the business. Germain's label scored hits with Buju Banton, Wayne Wonder, Beres Hammond and Tony Rebel to name just a few. Germain remains active in the music business working with artists such as Romain Virgo, Busy Signal, Sherieta and Exco Levi on new songs.
DJs are buzzing about the crisp new riddim from Philip Winta James' Overstand label. Titled the Militancy Riddim, the set includes a who's-who of breakthrough new artists: Jesse Royal, Kabaka Pyramid and Iba Mahr all contribute tracks, plus a big tune from Jah Cure ("Territory") make this one worth seeking out. Read an interview with James at Reggaeville. Preview the riddim on the Overstand Soundcloud page.
On the subject of noteworthy new music, here's a batch of new singles and tracks that ForwardEver rate very highly:
1. Kayla Bliss & Tarrus Riley – 876 Love (XTM Nation)
2. Pressure – Run Away (I-Grade)
3. Nikesha Lindo – Talk of the Town (Heavybeat)
4. Jah Vinci – Be Strong (Shiah Records)
5. RDX – Cool and Deadly (Techniques)
6. Gentleman – Heart of Rub-A-Dub (Vertigo) *
7. Third World & Tessanne Chin – By My Side (Third World Music) *
8. Bryan Art – Knowledge Is Power (VP Records)
9. Jah Bouks – Angola (Tads) *
10. Exco Levi – Holding On (Wicked Vybz)
* = link is official video