Generoso and Lily’s Bovine Ska and Rocksteady: Pat Hardy’s Kismet Label 9-22-15

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A gem from the late great Freddie McKay

Welcome Bovine Ska and Rocksteady Listeners!

This week we have a spotlight for those of you who love rocksteady and reggae as we delve deep into Pat Hardy’s KISMET LABEL! We opened up the show with two sets of ska featuring a rare release by Vic Taylor on the Pussy Cat Label entitled “Yes.”  Another gem from the first two sets of ska that opened the show is “You Say, She Say” from the Sneer Townersl, a fun vocal group that we always wish had recorded more.  That cut came out on Kentone in 1965.    We also realize that we rarely mention the background disco albums on this blogpost and as this week contained two gem LP, we must mention Lalomie Washburn superb 1977 LP on Parachute Records entitled, “MY Music Is Hot.”  The second hour featured the Eurodisco sounds of La Pamplemousse from the self-titled record that came out on AVI in 1976.  After a mento set and a long set of rare rocksteady tracks, we went into the Kismet Label spotlight which began the second hour of the show.

Little is known about the Kismet label, even though it was quite prolific.Some represses of Amalgamated records also existed on the label, making us suspect that Kismet may have been a Joe Gibbs imprint. We do know that Pat Hardy was the owner of Kismet, which emerged as an avenue for releases of The Progressions, his vocal group. The Progressions original members were Pat Hardy, Tony Russell, and Milton Henry with Derrick Bucknor and Rudy Mills joining as later members. As a result of the label’s focus on the group, multiple members would take a stab at producing and arranging for the label. The group and many other Kismet recordings were introduced to England with the Pama compilation, Reggae to the UK With Love. On early tracks from The Progressions, you’ll hear Lynn Taitt and the Jets backing the vocalists and Timmy George as the producer, including the track that opened the spotlight entitled, “Give Me Love.”  You’ll hear some amazing cuts on this spotlight from Dave And Ansel Collins, Freddie McKay, The Emotions and more!

You can hear our show from Sept 22nd, 2015 HERE.

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Love,
Generoso and Lily

 

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Generoso and Lily’s Bovine Ska and Rocksteady: Ronnie Nasralla’s BMN Label 9-15-15

BMN Label A

The Brilliant Maytals On BMN

 

Hello Bovine Ska and Rocksteady Listeners:

First, we wish Happy Birthday to our dear friend and Studio One artist Dudley Sibley.  Over the years Dudley has been a source of vital information to our show and we really appreciate it.  In honor of Dudley, we began this week’s show with our favorite track that he recorded, “Message Of Old.”  We followed with two sets of rocksteady to begin the show before going into a mento set that featured another gem from Chin’s Calyposo Sextet “Woman’s Tenderness.”  We ended that first hour with a set of rare ska beginning  with The Monarch’s 1965 cut for Kentone Records, “All Of Me” and ending with Roland Alphonso’s mighty instrumental “Jazz Ska” from King Edwards.  We then began the second hour with our spotlight of the BMN Label…

Owned and founded by Ronnie Nasralla, BMN is an acronym. B for the Blues Busters. M for the Maytals. And, N for Nasralla.

A high school classmate of Byron Lee, Ronnie was an early member of the Byron Lee’s Dragonaires. The group received their first major moment of fame when featured as the house band seen in Dr. No. Then, in 1964, Ronnie as the manager and Byron as the band leader arranged for a special dance at the Glass Bucket, an uptown Kingston club, to promote ska to Edward Seaga and executives from Atlantic records in order to represent Jamaican culture to America. With this promotion, the group traveled to America to perform on TV and in American clubs and would eventually represent Jamaica at the World’s Fair, with Ronnie choreographing the dancers for the performance.

On a more production side, Ronnie worked with George Benson, the owner of WIRL after Edward Seaga sold it to him, in order to build a recording studio in the backyard of the WIRL building. In turn, he developed the knowledge for production and began to produce the bands he managed, including the major two in the name of his label and many others that you will hear on this BMN label spotlight.

Ronnie formed the Federation of Musicians with Byron Lee and Sonny Bradshaw to prevent musicians from getting exploited, creating new rules to prevent overlong hours and new standards to creating recording contracts and paying salary.  In 1966, the label won the festival song of the year with Toots and the Maytals Bam Bam Festival song. Winner of the first ever Jamaican Independence Festival song competition. Ronnie received the Order of Distinction in 2013.

Listen to the entire program from September 15th, 2015 with the BMN spotlight HERE:

Please let us know what you think of the show via the comments and if you you enjoyed what we did, please subscribe to us on Mixcloud.  It is FREE!

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XO
Lily and Generoso

 

 

Generoso and Lily’s Bovine Ska and Rocksteady: Celebrating Pre-1962 Rico Rodriguez 9-8-15

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R.I.P. Rico Rodriguez

Hello Bovine Ska and Rocksteady Listeners:

Both Lily and I are deeply saddened by the news of the passing of legendary trombonist, Emmanuel “Rico” Rodriguez, who died on September 4th, 2015 at the age of 80. Many of you may know him from his work with The Specials or with Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra, but long before his recordings and performances in England, Rico was performing on the tracks of early ska and Jamaican Rhythm and Blues, and these earliest recordings are the ones we want to highlight to pay our respects to the mighty Rico. For this tribute show, we decided to examine Rico’s work prior to his emigration to England in 1962 for the second hour of the program.

Born in Havana, Cuba to a Jamaican mother and Cuban father, Rico and his family moved to Kingston as a child and attended the Alpha Boys School in the company of many future Jamaican music all-stars. In fact, his time at the Alpha Boys School allowed him to cross paths with another trombone king in Jamaica, Don Drummond, who would introduce Rico to the instrument he came to master and taught and mentored as a young musician. While learning from Don, Rico joined the Jamaica Jazz Orchestra with Don, Rupert Anderson, and Carlos Malcom. There’s a bit of contention around which track is the first recorded track by Rico. In interviews, we’ve seen The Jiving Juniors, “Over the River” as the first and in others, we’ve seen Continental Shuffle as the other. Given the dating of the record pressings, we began this spotlight on Rico’s spectacular trombone playing with Bridgeview Shuffle by the Matador All Stars.

By the time Rico left for England in 1962, he was in high demand, and as thus, it is no surprise he recorded for multiple labels and played on many many sessions.. Beyond his records for Lloyd Daley, Dada Tuari, and Duke Reid, Rico, like many artists in Jamaica, also recorded for Coxone Dodd. We heard Rico backing up Lascelles Perkins on “Lonely Robin,” recorded for Worldisc in 1961. In the late 50s, Rico moved to Count Ossie’s community in Wareika Hills, which was introduced to him by Don Drummond, who would invite Rico up to the hills after school to practice and perform. During this time, he got to explore multiple forms of music and would perform with Ossie, consequently, allowing him to perform on Ossie’s records in the early 60s.

In 2007, Rico received the Member of the Order of the British Empire award for his contributions to music. And, in 2012, he received the Silver Musgrave Medal for his musical contributions to Jamaica. We thank him for his legacy, and we send much respect to his family and to all of the artist who had the opportunity to work with him.

Listen to the entire program from September 8th, 2015 with the one hour tribute to Rico Rodriguez on MIXCLOUD HERE.

Please let us know what you think of the show via the comments and if you you enjoyed what we did, please subscribe to us on Mixcloud.  It is FREE!

Join Generoso and Lily’s Bovine Ska and Rocksteady on Facebook for news of upcoming spotlights, rare Jamaican tracks and photos!

XOXOXO
Generoso and Lily

 

 

 

Generoso and Lily’s Bovine Ska and Rocksteady: Reggae Takes A Voyage To The Moon 9-1-15

Jay Boys Jay MooN Walk

The Jay Boys And Harry J Are Going On A Moon Walk

 

Welcome Bovine Ska and Rocksteady Listeners!

On this week’s episode of Generoso and Lily’s Bovine Ska and Rocksteady WE WILL TAKE REGGAE TO THE MOON!

Shortly before and for years after Neil Armstrong became the first man to step on the moon, Jamaican and UK artist began churning out a wild assortment of amazing tracks dedicated to Earth’s only natural satellite.  This past week we put together a two hour show featuring reggae tracks inspired by the 1969 NASA moon landing!  And whether they directly address human exploration of the moon or old classics that speak lovingly about that gorgeous glowing orb, we pulled many of our favorites. We then mixed those rare and well known JAMAICAN SIDES FROM 1969-1978 in between news reports of the that moment in history and some wild late 1970s SPACE DISCO in the background! It is an exploration into deepest darkest silliness with a reggae beat!

You can listen to the Sept 1st, 2015 Reggae Goes To The Moon show HERE!

Join Generoso and Lily’s Bovine Ska and Rocksteady on Facebook for news of upcoming spotlights, rare Jamaican tracks and photos!