Carl Meeks ‎– Weh Dem Fah [1988]

Carl Meeks ‎– Weh Dem Fah [1988]

Carl Meeks ‎– Weh Dem Fah [1988]

Carl Meeks ‎– Weh Dem Fah [1988]

This is ‘Weh Dem Fah’ which was released by Carl Meeks in 1988 on the wonderful Redman International record label.

This is a great late 80s dancehall vocal album, with Redman International studio regulars Steelie & Clevie laying down the digital rhythms.

The cover artwork is another Wilfred Limonious piece and shows some of his geometric style designs that he was partial to doing in the late 80s for the rear cover. That hand-drawn ‘Carl Meeks’ logo on the cover should turned into an actual font – love it.

Tracklist
Beautiful Woman
Granny Say No Worry
Red Eye Lover
Front Line
Johnny
Whey Dem Fa
Without Your Love
Hey Bad Boy
Evil Eyes

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Listen to ‘Weh Dem Fah’ by Carl Meeks:

Listen to ‘Hey Bad Boy’ by Carl Meeks:


‘Weh Dem Fah’ remains a popular track, so much so, it was recently re-recorded with Gappy Ranks and Lion D jumping on the track with Carl Meeks. Check it out below:


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Mikey Melody ‎– Mona Lisa [1988]

Mikey Melody ‎– Mona Lisa [1988]

Mikey Melody ‎– Mona Lisa [1988]

Mikey Melody ‎– Mona Lisa [1988]

Released in 1988 on Dennis Star International records, this is ‘Mona Lisa’ by Mikey Melody.

This is pure late 80s dancehall vocals over digital rhythms. Mikey Melody sounds a lot like Conroy Smith, Courtney Melody and other such singers of the era, but lacks the hits and style of the aforementioned artists. To be fair, Mikey Melody did much better work, it is just a shame it isn’t on this album. It’s not bad as such, it just comes across as functional 80s dancehall, nothing special or memorable.

The album sleeve is pretty errr…..special, and hasn’t dated well at all. This is one of our least favorite Wilfred Limonious album covers – to be fair, it probably wasn’t his fault as he is only dealing with what he has been given to work with, and both Mikey Melody and his ‘Mona Lisa’ don’t look like they are enjoying any minute of this at all. Looks like a US prom photo.

Tracklist
A1 Mona Lisa
A2 Maranda
A3 Samantha
A4 Reggae Rock
A5 Break The Barriers Down
B1 Pa Pie Pie
B2 All Ina One
B3 Soldier Ina Town
B4 Mr. Melody
B5 Lovers Lane

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Listen to ‘Reggae Rock’ by Mikey Melody:


Listen to ‘Mona Lisa’ by Mikey Melody:



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Sugar Belly ‎– The Return Of Sugar Belly

Sugar Belly ‎– The Return Of Sugar Belly

Sugar Belly ‎– The Return Of Sugar Belly

Sugar Belly a.k.a. Wilfred Walker, is a unique figure in the Jamaican music scene – he is a self-taught musician who played Mento and Reggae music with a home-made saxophone that he made himself made from bamboo, bits of cardboard, and various other ‘found materials.

This album was released in 1985 on Techniques Records and sees Sugar Belly playing a hybrid of Mento and Reggae, with the backing of a full band.

Despite having a long career playing in the bars and hotels of Jamaica and the surrounding islands, Sugar Belly only recorded two full length albums (but he did rack up fifteen singles on various labels).

The album sleeve here is actually by Wilfred Limonious and probably goes down as one of the more obscure releases that Limonious created album artwork for.

Check out the fascinating clip from a Canadian documentary called ‘The Music of Man’ that was aired in 1979 and featured a short section on Sugar Belly and his home-made bamboo saxophone:



Tracklisting:
Yellow Bird
Peel Head John Crow
Miss Mary Ann
Occupation
Belly Beef
Hansome Gal
Pain A Back
Rugumbine
Fire In Mi Wire
Sugar Boy

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Listen to by ‘Pain A Back’ by Sugar Belly


Barrington Levy ‎– Open Book

Barrington Levy ‎– Open Book

Barrington Levy ‎– Open Book
Barrington Levy ‎– Open Book

This is ‘Open Book’ by Barrington Levy – this was an early Barrington Levy album and has appeared on a few record labels over the years, including Tuff Gong, Oak Sounds, and Dee Jay records.

The cover is by the legendary Wilfred Limonious, and it is a unique cover by his standards as it doesn’t utilise the Wilfred Limonious signature free-flowing, colourful, and detailed cartoon graphics – instead it adopts a moody and dark cityscape with flashing lights and stars in the background.

Limonious has written his name on the cover, and a hand-drawn ‘open book’ is shown in the middle with ‘Jah Love‘ written on the top of the pages. Definitly not your usual Limonious cover – but still great all the same.

The album itself is a great collection of early Barrington Levy dancehall vocal tracks, which all still sound great today.

Tracklist
Trying To Ruin My Life
My Love Don’t Come Easy
Mine You Hurt Mom
Skanking On Broadway
Open Book
Begging You A Ten Cent Sir
Ever Since
When You Are Feeling Hungry

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Listen to ‘Open Book’ by Barrington Levy:



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Barrington Levy at iTunes
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Charlie Chaplin – Que Dem [1984]

Charlie Chaplin - Que Dem [1984]

Charlie Chaplin - Que Dem [1984]

Charlie Chaplin - Que Dem [1984]

This is a very young looking Charlie Chaplin on the cover of his album ‘Que Dem’ that was released in 1984 on Power House records and distributed by Sonic Sounds.

The album cover is by Wilfred Limonious who also provides his signature hand-drawn cartoon on the rear of the sleeve. The cartoon shows Charlie Chaplin (the actor) bumping into his Jamaican DJ-namesake and saying “Reggae? What ever it means, it sounds good to me“.

Limonious started his career illustrating albums at Sonic Sounds, but as soon as his reputation grew he designed album sleeves from pretty much every label on the island (as well as a few abroad)….but it was on Sonic Sounds where he cut his artistic teeth and made his name as a designer/illustrator.

The album is pretty awesome too and shows why Charlie Chaplin rapidly became one of Jamaica’s most popular DJs in the early 80s. This is laid back dancehall DJ-ing over some great rhythms from some top Jamaican musicians including Skully, Sly & Robbie, Willie Lindo, and more.

Tracklist
A1 DJ A Dance
A2 Exploiting
A3 Now A Days
A4 Pretty Girl
B1 Coco Deala Brown
B2 Unfair
B3 Diet Rock
B4 Que Dem
B5 Food Man Rock

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Listen to ‘ DJ A Dance’ by Charlie Chaplin

Listen to ‘Unfair’ by Charlie Chaplin:



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Check out more Charlie Chaplin at iTunes