Courtney Melody – Ninja Mi Ninja Showcase

by | Oct 16, 2015 | Artist, Reviews

Courtney Melody - Ninja Mi Ninja Showcase
back sleeve

Release Info

Title: Courtney Melody – Ninja Mi Ninja Showcase

Label: Dub Store Records | Format: CD-LP-DR | Street date: October 16, 2015 | Website: Dub Store Records


  1. Ninja Mi Ninja
  2. Version
  3. The Night Before
  4. Version
  5. Mental Slavery
  6. Version
  7. Ready For The World
  8. Version
  9. Jah Jah Love
  10. Version
  11. Unite
  12. Version

Right from the start with the 7″ single “Screechy Across The Border” – produced by Clifton Henry for Stereo One – it was clear that Courtney Melody was going to be a success. Somehow he incorporated the Waterhouse style with a slur and had come up with something new. “Screechy Across The Border” was played by reggae DJs worldwide and covered by Little Kirk. A stint with Technique Records produced the local hits such as “How Long Will Your Love Last”, “Key To Your Heart,” and “Exploiter”.

Courtney Melody had one international hit song, “Bad Boy,” in 1986, which started a run of dancehall hits including “Turn Them Back” and furthered his reputation as an influential figure in the dancehall scene. It’s said his style and sound shaped the next generation of dancehall artists. Like many Jamaican artists, he recorded for virtually every producer and recording company on the island including Robert Ffrench, King Jammy, Hugh “Redman” James, Prince Jazzbo and, of course, King Tubby.

It was King Tubby’s new Waterhouse studio that was responsible for recording and releasing his debut album “Ninja Mi Ninja” on the Taurus label. Powerful digi riddim tracks laid by the Firehouse Crew, consisting of George “Dusty” Miller on drums, Donald Dennis on bass and Paul “Wrong Move” Crossdale on keyboards, along with Courtney Melody’s voice are the main feature of this album in ‘Showcase’ format (six vocals followed by their dubs), which was released when Courtney Melody was at his hottest. His obvious delight at being in the studio plus the wicked digital riddims means that the excitement caused by the title track and massive hit song “Ninja Mi Ninja” – across a relicked version of Horace Andy’s “Fever” riddim – is maintained throughout. Standouts include “Mental Slavery”, “Ready For The World” and “Unity”. Courtney Melody’s plaintive singjay style vocals are counteracted and complemented by a selection of deadly digital dub versions, expertly mixed by Peego & Fatman.