Derrick Harriott – Greatest Reggae Hits, Expanded Original Album

by Jun 17, 2021Artist, Reviews

Derrick Harriott - Greatest Reggae Hits, Expanded Original Album
Derrick Harriott

Release Info

Derrick Harriott – Greatest Reggae Hits, Expanded Original Album

Label:  Doctor Bird | Format: Dbl CD-DR | Street date: June 11, 2021 | Website label

Tracks

    DISC ONE:

  1. Face Dog
  2. Being In Love
  3. Some Guys Have All The Luck
  4. I Told You So
  5. Let Me Down Easy
  6. Why Do Fools Fall In Love
  7. Go Away Dream
  8. Look Over Your Shoulder
  9. Trial Of Love
  10. Brown Baby
  11. Bucketful Of Tears (LP Mix)
  12. Since I Lost My Baby
  13. Face Dog Version
  14. Love Version
  15. Some Guys Have All The Luck Version
  16. Easy Version
  17. Why Do Fools Fall In Love Verson
  18. Look Over Your Shoulder Version In Dub
  19. Brown Baby Version
  20. Bucketful Of Tears Version
  21. Since I Lost My Baby Version
    DISC TWO:

  1. Eighteen With A Bullet
  2. Love Is Just Around The Corner
  3. Fly, Robin, Fly
  4. Wish On A Star
  5. Caught You In A Lie
  6. Dancing The Reggae
  7. What About Me
  8. Reggae Train
  9. Castles In The Air
  10. Look At Me
  11. Bucketful Of Tears
  12. All Day Music
  13. Eighteen With A Bullet Version (Bonus Track)
  14. Lollipop Girl
  15. Have You Seen Her?
  16. Over The River
  17. Close To Me
  18. Don’t Rock The Boat
  19. Day By Day
  20. What Can I Do (The Wedding)
  21. Medley In Five, Parts 1 & 2

New Derrick Harriott Release

Doctor Bird, a division of Cherry Red Records, specialising in vintage Jamaican sounds licensed from the legendary catalogue of Trojan Records, unleashes another whopping collection of tunes from talented and influential singer/producer Derrick Harriott who, in 1971, was named ‘Top Producer of 1970′ in Swing Magazine. After having released albums with all-time classic recordings from 1967 to 1973 such as Derrick Harriott & The Crystalites’ The Undertaker and Psychedelic Train, Scotty’s School-Days, and Derrick Harriott Presents Earthly Sounds, there’s now a new Derrick Harriott double CD out on the streets entitled Greatest Reggae Hits.

42-Track Collection

This 42-track collection features Derrick Harriott’s reissue of his 1975 released popular and best-selling LP Greatest Reggae Hits and Reggae Disco Rockers, of which the original UK release was pulled due to Trojan’s abrupt demise in 1975. Later, that LP was released on the Sarge and Charmers labels in the UK. Besides the inclusion of these two albums, there are also dub versions of nine of the album’s dozen tracks of Greatest Reggae Hits included as well as 8 tracks under the title Greatest Hits, Part 2. All in all, this collection includes 33 tracks new to CD.

Soulful Reggae Sounds

When you have to characterize this collection of tunes, then all you’ll have to say is that it’s all about very soulful reggae sounds. The 12 tracks from Greatest Reggae Hits are almost solely of soul cover versions. Only three songs – Face Dog, Trial Of Love, and Bucketful Of Tears – are originals written by Derrick Harriott. And also about half of the tracks from Reggae Disco Rockers are soul covers. And, of course, the 8 bonus tracks of Greatest Hits, Part 2 features several do-overs from soul tunes. It certainly ain’t a punishment to listen to all those soul covers because Derrick Harriott has always been rated as one of the most soulful singers of Jamaica. Add to this his smooth production style and it’s fully understandable why his mid-’70s works had a profound influence on the developing sound of lovers rock in the UK. However, it are in particular the self-penned originals that we’re interested in the most.

The Originals

Let’s start with a big tune titled Face Dog, which sees Derrick Harriot updating his old mento classic in fine reggae style. This feel and vibe of this rootsy tune differ from the rest of the tracks from the original Greatest Reggae Hits LP. The other tunes penned by Derrick Harriott himself, Trial Of Love and Bucketful Of Tears are two love ballads that stay very close to the soul covers. Musically there’s nothing that connects with reggae music. The same goes for Wish On A Star and Castles In The Air from the LP Reggae Disco Rockers on the other disc. Dancing The Reggae and Reggae Train strongly lean towards ’70s pop reggae known from UK bands like The Cimarons and Matumbi. And then there’s the compilation of singles from 1971 to 1974 that form the bonus part on Disc 2. Included are notable early reggae do-overs of Derrick Harriott’s hit singles with the Jiving Juniors, Lollipop Girl (for Duke Reid, 1960) and the great Over The River aka I’ll Be Here When He Comes (for Coxsone Dodd, 1961), both released on Crystal Records’ 7″ singles in 1971.

The music gathered on this double cd is an exponent of the ’70s commercial trend in the UK of giving soul standards a reggae treatment to make it more interesting for a broader audience. And who else than an artist like Derrick Harriott (and also John Holt) could do it better?!

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