UK

Reggae Covers: John Holt – Hey Jude (The Beatles)

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A neat cover of the well-known original by The Beatles, John Holt has the sweetness of voice to pull this off where other singers might fall flat.

Reggae Covers: The Music Doctors – In The Summertime (Mungo Jerry)

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Appearing the same year as the original by Ashford, UK’s Mungo Jerry, this reggae version is built around a solid piano performance and an almost cute-feeling rhythm track.

Reggae Covers: The Cats – Swan Lake (Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky)

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A smooth, totally unexpected reggae version of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s 1876 classic ballet score. Groovy flute playing and a skank-worthy beat from Mile End, London, UK’s The Cats.

Reggae Covers: The Mohawks – Let It Be (The Beatles)

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A timely-if-straightfoward cover of the 1970 original by The Beatles this track is representative of the energy of The Mohawks, heretofore best-known as creators of ‘The Champ,’ an oft-sampled horn break from the world of hip-hop.

Speaking words of wisdom,
let it be…

Reggae Covers: The Cimarons – Over The Rainbow (Judy Garland)

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The Cimarons were the UK’s first indigenous reggae act, formed in 1967 in London, UK from a core of Jamaican session musicians including Sonny Binns, Winston “Reedy” Reid, Franklyn Dunn, Locksley Gichie, Lloyd “Jah Bunny” Donaldson, Maurice Ellis, and Carl Levy. The original 1939 recording Judy Garland made for The Wizard of Oz became both an instant favorite and a defining track for Garland on the order of Frank Sinatra’sNew York, New York.”

Someday I’ll wish upon a star
Wake up where the clouds are far behind me
Where trouble melts like lemon drops
Away above the chimney tops
That’s where you’ll find me

Reggae Covers: Prince Buster – All My Loving (The Beatles)

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A fairly straightforward cover of the 1963 hit for renowned Liverpudlian rock combo The Beatles. Prince Buster entertained a lot of tourist audiences in his heyday so it is only natural that he and other ‘North Coast’ bandleaders would churn out sentimental covers such as these by the bushel.

Close your eyes and I’ll kiss you
Tomorrow I’ll miss you
Remember I’ll always be true
And then while I’m away
I’ll write home every day
And I’ll send all my loving to you

Reggae Progenitors: Andy & Joey – You’re Wondering Now (The Specials)

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The 1964 original by Andy & Joey lacks the signature disaffected sloth of The Specials‘1979 version from their eponymous LP, comprised as it is of gravelly urban voices muttering unenthusiastically but with irony intact.

You’re wondering now, what to do, now you know this is the end
You’re wondering how, you will pay, for the way you did behave

C & N Records; Brentford Rd. Recorded at Jamaica Recording Studio.