Don Carlos Mix | Reggae Lover Podcast # 113

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This Reggae Lover episode features the legendary reggae singer known as Don Carlos.

Jamaican reggae singer and composer Don Carlos began singing in 1973 as a member of Black Uhuru. Don continues to perform sweet roots reggae music all over the world. Reggae Lover Podcast Episode 113

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Don Carlos was born Euvin Spencer in the Western Kingston district known as Waterhouse. If you didn’t know, this is one of the roughest parts of Kingston. I was also the birthplace of the group Black Uhuru, and super producers King Tubby and King Jammy.

Notice the consistency of the roots reggae sound and distinct vocal delivery in all the songs. Don Carlos began his career in 1973 as an original member of Black Uhuru along with Garth Ennis and Duckie Simpson. After a few years, the trio split and Don Carlos launched into a solo career.

In 1981 he dropped “Suffering,” an album that exploded on the scene becoming popular especially in Africa. Don Carlos was then solidified as a soloist. During the years between 80 and 85, he was also very popular on the Dancehall scene with many top 10 hits. Songs heard on this mix include the Volcano label hits, Hog and Goat, I’m Not Going Crazy, and Laser Beam.

Don continued releasing albums and touring throughout the 80s. Black Uhuru’s original members reunited from 1989-1994 before splitting again. Since then, Don Carlos has been one of the busiest touring artists out of Jamaica. He rocked the stage at Reggae on the River in California this summer. He has performed at the Sierra Nevada World Music Festival and other major festivals globally.

He will be on tour in 2019 to support a new album called Golden Classics. You can check him out at DonCarlosReggae.Com or coming to a stage near you.

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The Top Reggae Bands of All Time | Reggae Lover Podcast Episode 74

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I curated some of the biggest hits from legendary bands: Third World, Israel Vibration, Inner Circle, Aswad, Black Uhuru, and Steel Pulse – groups who have presented fabulous reggae music performances and recordings for nearly half a century.

Reggae Lover Podcast

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Third World is a Jamaican reggae band formed in 1973. Their sound is influenced by soul, funk, and disco. Although it has undergone several line-up changes, Stephen “Cat” Coore and Richard Daley have been constant members.

Steel Pulse is a roots reggae musical band, from the Handsworth area of Birmingham, England, which has a large number of Afro-Caribbean, Indian and other Asian migrants. They originally formed at Handsworth Wood Boys School – composed of David Hinds (lead vocals, guitar), Basil Gabbidon (lead guitar, vocals), and Ronald McQueen (bass); along with Basil’s brother Colin briefly on drums. Steel Pulse was the first non-Jamaican act to win the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album.

Black Uhuru is a Jamaican reggae group formed in 1972, initially as Uhuru (Swahili for ‘freedom’). The group has undergone several line-up changes over the years, with Derrick “Duckie” Simpson as the mainstay. They had their most successful period in the 1980s, with their album Anthem winning the first ever Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album in 1985.

Aswad is a long-lasting British reggae group, noted for adding strong R&B and soul influences to the reggae sound. They have been performing since the mid-1970s, having released a total of 21 albums. “Aswad” means “black” in Arabic.

Inner Circle is a Jamaican reggae group. The group was originally called The Inner Circle Band and formed in 1968. The band achieved major success in the 1970s with Jacob Miller as their lead singer but split up after his death in 1980. They reformed in 1986 and had a major hit with the 1987 song “Bad Boys”, which serves as the theme song for the long-running Spike (formerly Fox Network) television program COPS.[1] They are also well known for their song “Sweat (A La La La La Long),” a big hit in the U.S. in the early 1990s. The band is known for blending pop and rock with reggae.

Israel Vibration is a reggae harmony group, originating from Kingston, Jamaica. Lascelle “Wiss” Bulgin, Albert “Apple Gabriel” Craig, and Cecil “Skelly” Spence all overcame childhood polio and went on to be one of the most successful roots groups to form in Jamaica in the 1970s. The trio initially met as children at a rehabilitation center.

I would also want to make mention of bands like Fab 5, UB40, Big Mountain, SOJA, Tribal Seeds, Raging Fyah, and there are and have been 1000’s of musical ensembles that dedicated themselves to pushing the reggae music envelope. Big ups to all singers and players of instruments.