To ease you into the weekend, a selection of dancehall grooves from the 1990s, featuring three UK Top 5 hits (Dawn Penn, Bob Marley & The Wailers and Aswad), one Top 15 single (Sly & Robbie) and, surprisingly, one Top 40 (Mishka).
I say surprisingly for the latter, as I remember rolling my eyes when I first saw the video for Give You All The Love on The Chart Show. Adding grist to the mill, it was released in 1999 by a then-sinking Creation Records (they sunk that same year). A few years later, I spotted the CD single in a record shop and it was the remixes by Mad Professor and Bristol legends Smith & Mighty - and the 50p price tag - that convinced me to give it another go. I'm glad I did; I generally skip the album version, but the remixes are great. For all you trivia fans out there, Miska is the brother of Heather Nova.
In just under an hour, you get the brilliance of Adrian Sherwood, Bim Sherman and Jah Wobble, a 'lost' Marley song rediscovered a decade after his passing, and a version of Aswad's 2nd biggest hit that may appease those who thought they'd sold out by getting Beatmasters to remix the main 7" and 12" singles. Danny Red may be familiar to any of you with a copy of Leftfield's incredible Leftism album, as he contributed vocals to Inspection (Check One).
I don't usually comment on the accompanying photo but, in keeping with the relaxed rhythms of today's selection, I was working in Coleford the other day, a town in the heart of the Forest Of Dean. In a similarly relaxed style, I was tickled to see that they've been in no hurry to take down their Christmas neons. Either that, or it's taking this sentiment far too literally...
1) Solid As A Rock (Hexadecimal Remix Full Length By Steve Osborne): Bim Sherman (1996)
2) Night Nurse (Jah Wobble 12" Mix) (Cover of Gregory Isaacs): Sly & Robbie ft. Simply Red (1997)
3) Mammoth Galactica (Album Version By Audio Active & Adrian Sherwood): Audio Active ft. David Harrow (1995)
4) You Don't Love Me (No, No, No) (Extended Mix By Steely & Clevie): Dawn Penn (1994)
5) Iron Lion Zion (12" Mix By): Bob Marley & The Wailers (1992)
6) Riddimwize (Part II - Re-Assess Your Style) (Remix By Nick Manasseh, Martin Madhatter & Peps): Danny Red (1994)
7) Shine (Majorwad Mix By Aswad & Carlton 'Bubblers' Ogilvie): Aswad (1994)
8) Give You All The Love (Smith And Mighty Club Mix): Mishka (1999)