Jazzie B Presents School Days
produced: Various artists
Jazzie B, who celebrates Soul II Soul's 20th anniversary of their first release this year, is the next artist to compile his selection of influential tracks into the latest compilation from Trojan Records. Jazzie B Presents School Days is a straight compilation of tracks chosen by the newly honoured Soul II Soul front man, that take him back to his youth.
Influenced by soul, but with a heavy fusion of reggae, funk, hip hop and dance, Jazzie B's School Days is an upbeat album and a great way to start the summer of 2008. The selected tracks are very much in the same vein as the kinds of records he used to play back in the late 1970's/early 1980's, when his North London Boys were running their first soundsystem, Jah Rico. In fact, the album title School Days, encompasses the times when Jazzie and his boys used to look forward to the nights after school spent shifting around the rig, to play out the music they loved. Needing more than simply the latest Jamaican pre-release singles, Jazzie and Jah Rico found their edge in the multi-cultural North London, and Soul II Soul was born. The music played was mixed up to reflect the diverse audience and large presence of girls â a rarity in the mostly male sound system world. Jah Rico was somewhere in between lovers rock and roots sounds, banging the life out of soulful tunes that set it apart. Starting out with Alphonse Mouzon to Ayzmuth, the style and combination of tracks they played was like a new style of reggae - more about making a statement than making you dance. The music and how it was played became revolutionary as the decks were turned for the first time to face out into the crowd. The effect of seeing the crowd and their direct reactions had a huge influence on modern British reggae and Jazzie's own sound and is what is reflected here. Jazzie B Presents School Days is a choice of reggae tunes mostly from Jah Rico days, that clearly point the way to what soon became Soul II Soul, as well as, the iconic genre-trampling that came to define British black music. Through this selection, Jazzie celebrates not only his own roots, but also the importance of British Reggae as a whole.
Jazzie B describes this Trojan selection as 'An all-reggae set that still has the depths and changes of pace of a regular set but all comes back to the same, happy uplifting mood. Every cut on here is a guaranteed killer, the absolute gems of our day."
1. Screw Face - I-Roy
2. Slave Master - Gregory Isaacs
3. Hit The Road Jack - Big Youth
4. Jump Up - Admiral Bailey
5. Ring The Alarm - Tenor Saw
6. Ready Done - Nitty Gritty
7. Natty Dread A Weh She Want [12" mix] - Tapper Zukie & Horace Andy
8. Shine Eye Girl - Barrington Levy & Jah Thomas
9. Reggae Feeling - Freddie McGregor
10. Getting Cozy - In Crowd (The)
11. Love Has Found Its Way - Dennis Brown
12. Baby My Love - In Crowd & Jah Stitch
13. Tired Fe Lick Weed In A Bush - Jacob Miller
14. Warrior - Junior Delgado
15. Point Blank Observer Style - I-Roy
16. Just Call Me African Roots - Johnny Clarke & Clint Eastwood
17. Ain't That Lovin' You (For More Reasons Than One) - Alton Ellis & The 18. Point Of View - Matumbi