Mean Girl Riddim

by Jan 16, 2019

Larry Marshall - Mean Girl
Larry Marshall
Mean Girl

This is one of the warmest and most beautiful riddims in Reggae. “Mean Girl” features a heartfelt vocal from Larry Marshall, a rolling bass line and great horns chorus. It is another Studio One classic. This was followed by two excellent DJ versions, “Gun Court” by Little Joe (aka Ranking Joe) and “Natty Farmyard” by Prince Far I.

Mighty Diamonds

The riddim really took off in 1975 when the Mighty Diamonds recorded “I Need A Roof” at Channel One over a fine Rockers recut. Tabby’s voice is particularly soulful on this outstanding track, and Channel One also issued a lovely instrumental version on “Vital Dub”.

Joe Gibbs

Joe Gibbs recorded Junior Byles on the riddim singing “Heart And Soul”, which uses the lyrics from “Mean Girl” as the basis for an uplifting new song. Joe Gibbs also recorded two excellent DJ cuts to the riddim; Prince Far I’s “Boz Rock” and Trinity’s “Render Your Heart”. Around the same time there were many further recordings on the riddim including a new song by Larry Marshall, “Oh Jah” and cuts from Bunny Lee, Niney Holness, Bullwackies and Prince Jazzbo.

Augustus Pablo

Augustus Pablo also cut the riddim, but the slow and moody track he created is unlike any other version. He used the riddim for a handful of excellent outings including Jacob Miller’s classic “Each One Teach One” and Jah Levi’s “Zion Have Fe Lion”. Coxsone Dodd was also tempted to contribute by recording Sugar Minott singing “I Need A Roof” over the original cut of the riddim.

King Jammy

Versions of the riddim have never stopped, and a lot of interest was generated in the late 80’s when King Jammy issued cut after cut on a great electro version of the riddim. His first big hit on the riddim was Frankie Paul’s classic “I Know The Score”, and this was followed by excellent cuts from Sanchez, Thriller U’s version “My Love” and Cocoa Tea’s “Uptight Saturday Night”. Jammy and his Uncle Trevor then responded to public demand and issued a whole album on the riddim. “The Score Of Love”, and very entertaining it is too.

(Source: Ray Hurford & Jean Scrivener’s “Rhythm Wise One & Two”)


Selected tunes from the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s & ’90s :

Larry Marshall – Mean Girl
Dub Specialist – Dub Me Girl
Dillinger – Regular Girl
Dillinger – Plantation Heights
Larry Marshall – Oh Jah
Little Joe – Gun Court
Aggrovators – Mine Field
Big Youth – Four Sevens
City Line Players – Black Man Rock
Jacob Miller – Each One Teach One
Jah Levi – Zion A Fe Lion
Junior Byles – Heart And Soul
Mighty Diamonds – I Need A Roof
Pablove Black & Sound Dimension – Consumer Sounds
Prince Far I – Boz Rock
Prince Far I – Natty Farmyard
Barry Brown – Jealous Lover
Prince Jazzbo – Kick Boy Face

Morwells – They Hold Us Down
Revolutionaries – Roof Top Dub
Rockers Allstars – Zambian Step
Sugar Minott – Roof Over My Head
Trinity – Render Your Heart
Winston Wright – Rocking Vibration
Early B – Poor Class Want Mass
Ashanti Waugh – Don’t Feel No Way
Frankie Paul – I Know The Score
Horace Martin – Gambling Man
Jerry Johnson – The Score
Josey Wales – Rentman
Sanchez – End Of The World
Thriller U – My Love
Thriller U – Waiting For You
Cocoa Tea – Uptight Saturday Night
Cocoa Tea – Mr. Neck Tie Man
Capleton – Stand Tall
Sizzla – Babylon A Listen
Luciano – Sweep Over My Soul
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