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Stalag

Posted by The man 
The man
Stalag
December 30, 2005 03:11PM
"Room full, all full, you can't get a spoonful,
Tell me which one o' them a trouble? Are the good
Techniques ~ are the general now."

In reggae's constant reappraisal of its sources the incident of a single rhythm suddenly predominating on the dancehall circuit and remaining in vogue for as much as a year and often even longer has been a feature of the music since the 1970s.

Early examples chronicle the Studio 1 sessions originally utilised by Alton Ellis for 'I'm Just A Guy and his 'I'm Still In Love With You', which enjoys great favour around the time the two sevens clash, eventually providing a worldwide hit for Althea & Donna in the guise of 'Uptown Top Ranking'. Others have included the Sound Dimension instrumentals 'Real Rock', 'Drum Song' and 'Full Up' from the same studio, the latter finally evolving into Musical Youth's astonishing 'Dutchie'. The sound systems have skanked to untold versions of 'Shank I Sheck' since the early '80s, numerous adaptations of the horn fanfare and familiar bassline which signifies the 'Never Let Go' rhythm, a series of 'Swing Easy' and 'Skylarking' and 'Peanut Vendor' riffs. At the beginning of this year Waterhouse producer Prince Jammy introduced what has since become known as the "sleng teng" after its original incarnation as Wayne Smith's 'Under Me Sleng Teng', which has spawned a further glut of variations, with reportedly more than 80 different vocal cuts in the possession of Jammy alone.

The latest exhumation concerns the famous Techniques 'Stalag 17' instrumental, reworked intermittently in the past but given sudden impetus by Tenor Saw's wildly popular 'Ring The Alarm', also produced by Techniques (Winston Riley) and backed by the original rhythm. Tenor Saw's has been a meteoric rise from obscurity to main attraction with Sugar Minott's Youthman Promotion sound system set, which has carried the swing in Jamaica throughout the summer, and 'Ring The Alarm' is his biggest record to date.

In its wake arrive two new albums from Jamaica this week, with all ten tracks of the respective sets devoted to variations on thr 'Stalag 17' theme. Both of them vehicles for upcoming artists working the dancehall genre.

Out of Chancery Lane, 'Original Stalag 17-18 And 19' (Techniques) appears to have assembled the cream of the current Youth Promotion breed. As well as the Tenor Saw effort, there is Sugar Minottt himself with 'Jah Jah Rule' and another of the sound's rising stars, the much touted though previously unheard on wax Yami Bollo, who details
'When A Man In Love'. Other relative newcomers are Admiral Tebet with 'Trouble To A Man' and Little Kirk accommodating the rhythm to the tune of Tina Turner's 'What's Love Got To Do With It'. Of the more established names Michael Prophet extols Techniques on 'Room Full', a rare Brigadier Jerry excursions asks 'What Kind Of World' and Lloyd Hemmings reappears from the blue with 'Ragamuffin Soldier'. The set closes with the Techniques All Star band and 'Stalag 17' itself.

The other LP is 'Stalag 17 Super Version Excursion' (Jammys), a reworking of the rhythm in electronic style pace "sleng teng". This naturally features the principals of Prince Jammy's own sound system and opens with Patrick Andy's declared 'Come Fe Mash It', followed by another singer with his star in the ascendant Nitty Gritty on 'Good Morning Teacher', while the ever present Wayne Smith weighs in with 'Come Along' and Pad Anthony voices 'Ease On Down The Road'. Newcomers number Super Black with 'We Rule', Don Angilo with 'Fe Me Daddy', one Youthman castigating ''Mr Boss Man' and Eccleton Jarrett on 'Give Thanks And Praise'. Hornsmad Dean Fraser blows a 'Sax Excursion' of the rhythm and Prince Jammy himself mixes down a 'Rub A Dub Version' of the same.

Penny Reel
Re: Stalag
January 05, 2006 03:49AM
Who were the musicians that made up "Techniques All Stars" band?
The man
Re: Stalag
January 05, 2006 04:13AM
Well, Ansel Collins was on organ.

Observer
papa ray
Re: Stalag
January 05, 2006 06:09AM
Stalag Riddim comes on like the collective tribal heart-beat of reggae.
Re: Stalag
January 05, 2006 07:41AM
Soul Syndicate built the rhythm.
Fully should get the royalties ( for the bassline being sampled so many times! )

Jackie Pablo
Re: Stalag
January 05, 2006 07:55AM
jb welda
Re: Stalag
January 05, 2006 10:13AM
this review makes me want to grab both those albums; i never did back when they were current because one riddim albums usually bore me. i have a number of these tracks elsewhere but it would be nice to have them collected together as in these sets.

that brigadier jerry cut has always been a favorite of mine.

one love
jah bill
Re: Stalag
January 05, 2006 02:06PM
i can help you out on cdr if you like, jb. i burned my lps stalag 17-18-19 & stalag 20 onto a cdr. i don't have that stalag 17 super version excursion. have heard it tho, and sure wish i did.

01 ring the alarm - tenor saw
02 trouble to man - admiral tibet
03 what's love got to do - little kirk
04 look what you have done - little john
05 ragamuffin soldier - lloyd hemmins
06 jah jah rule - sugar minott
07 when a man in love - yami bolo
08 room full - michaelprophet
09 what kind of world - brigadier jerry
10 stalag 17 - techniques all star
11 love is the light - horace andy
12 arleen - general echo
13 preach the gospel - colour man
14 coconut oit - augustus pablo
15 all nation bow - big youth
16 lover of my life - frankie paul
17 ebony eyes - ian sweetness
18 always start to cry - collin roach
19 extra man - spanner banner
20 burial - dean frazer

m.

Re: Stalag
January 05, 2006 02:13PM
>jammy's repress has ruff crackle & the stalag2000 with 'new' line-up put out on vp is a fair 'thin' pressing but sumting about dem vp remixx souN quality doesnt cutt it over a original version even with crackle to the i*z earz*
-RASpects+
The man
Re: Stalag
January 05, 2006 03:30PM
I still like the Michael Prophet cut best. 'Ring The Alarm' bores me stupid. I run scvreaming from the room anyime I hear it. I wrote this review in 1985 when the album was new and Tenor Saw still fresh. I no longer own either album, and got rid of the Jammy's one first. I think this was published in New Musical Express in 1985.

Penny Reel
Dadi Digi
Re: Stalag
January 06, 2006 01:18PM
I got both of these LP's from back in the day JB. I can put both up on a CDR for you I you wish? Ditto for penny if interested.
jb welda
Re: Stalag
January 06, 2006 02:11PM
thanks dadi digi and michele but i will pass, appreciate the offer though, im going to look around for the original albums.

one love
jah bill
Re: Stalag
January 06, 2006 02:20PM
"False alarm, talk about the sound dying.."

Re: Stalag
January 06, 2006 02:20PM
the stalag 17 18 19 was one of the first records in my collection-along with the answer riddim album on midnight rock. i love this suff!!!!!!!
one love-juan love
jb welda
Re: Stalag
January 06, 2006 02:34PM
what the "answer riddim album on midnight rock" called, juan? now theres a riddim i love

one love
jah bill
The man
Re: Stalag
January 06, 2006 02:58PM
I think the LP is called 'Answer', Bill. Here's the tracks:

Say What You're Saying/Little John
New Dress Style/Jah Thomas
Sitting In The Park/Anthony Johnson
Make Some Noise/Danny English
I Want My Pay/Earl Cunningham
M.C.Peggy/Buru Banton
Ram Jam Session/Carlton Livingston
Hard Road/King Rolex
Calypso,Calyso/Peter Metro
In Time/Jim Brown
Histroy Of Jamaica/Earl B
Gal Dem Love Us/Cujo Ranks
Soca Part One/Pappa Bruce
Dubwise/Fuzzy Jones,Jah Thomas/Roots Radics

Observer
jb welda
Re: Stalag
January 06, 2006 04:15PM
oh yes and there it is at ernies!

many thanks for the tip

one love
jah bill
Re: Stalag
January 06, 2006 09:32PM
1990's Stalag 10:

Suger Beagle - Duss A Soundboy
Bounty Killer - Gun Down
Cocoa Tea - We Do The Killing
Jigsy King - Rampa Pam Pam
Reggie Stepper - Drum Pan Sound/Kim-Bo-King
Future Troubles & Bounty Killer - Kill A Soundboy
Red Fox - No Punaany Tonight
Tenor Saw & Buju Banton - Quick
Nicodemus - Suzy Wong
Garnett Silk, Cocoa Tea & Charlie Chaplin - Every Knee Shall Bow

Re: Stalag
January 07, 2006 12:23PM
the gunshot riddim album on midnight rock is also crucial.
one love-juan love
Re: Stalag
January 08, 2006 02:53AM
Who are the members of Soul Syndicate (that is, which ones apaer on the original Ansel Collins and the Techniques All -Stars release?

Re: Stalag
January 11, 2006 02:16AM
For starters, Fully on bass, Santa on drums, Chinna and Tony on guitars...Ansel Collins on keyboard , of course...any guesses on who do horns ? anyone ?
Big Youth was the first dj to voice it ("Jah Screechy"winking smiley. The instrumental
first premiered at a King Tubby's soundsystem dance in 1974. Of all the versions
done of this rhythm, none of these guys gets royalties and, (more often )
no credit . I , for one, think this is wrong.But that's just me .
Re: Stalag
January 11, 2006 09:57AM
I would prob. add Keith Sterling on keys as well...
The Youth track I'm familiar with is called "Jim Squeechy" or "Jim Screechy"..."John Coltrane died in vain of a Love Supreme..." Classic!
The musicians prob. get a thirty dollar pay fe de session an dun...
Re: Stalag
January 11, 2006 10:02AM
btw when we did the ridim for Tippa Irie he called it "Stagalag", as do many Jamaicans.
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