Various – Roy Cousins Presents Uphill Struggle

by Dec 12, 2022Reviews, Various

Roy Cousins Presents Uphill Struggle

Release Info

Street date
October 21, 2022


1 Charlie Chaplin – Diet Rock
2 The Gaylads – May Be For Long
3 Peter & Paul – The Way I’m Feeling
4 Cornell Campbell – Jah Jah Give Us Love
5 The Meditations – Stranger In Love
6 Charlie Chaplin, Don Carlos & Junior Reid – Skanky Producer
7 Ken Bob – In Danger
8 Prince Far I – Survival
9 The Royals – Make Believe
10 Earl 16 – OK My Love
11 Winston Jarrett – Sleeping In The Park
12 Neville Mitchell – Get Out Of Hand
13 Glen Lewis – Painted Face
14 Earl 16 – That Love
15 Knowledge – Mental Slavery
16 Junior English – I Second That Emotion
17 Ken Parker – Girl Asheba
18 Baba Dread – Dread And Corporal Brown

Initial Release

Initially released on a vinyl LP by the defunct Heartbeat Records from Cambridge, MA in 1986 under the title Roy Cousins Presents Wambesi All Stars and then, in 1995, reappearing on CD in Heartbeat Records’ budget price series Reggae’s Greatest Hits with the addition of two tracks, the compilation set – retitled Roy Cousins Presents Uphill Struggle – has now been reissued on Roy Cousins’ own record label. Here producer Roy Anthony Cousins has added four more tracks to the ones that were featured on Heartbeat Records’Reggae’s Greatest Hits Volume 2.

Roy Cousins

Without a doubt, Roy Cousins has built a fantastic catalogue of some of the finest reggae ever released. It enables the singer, producer, and record label owner to pick some of the best tracks from more than a hundred albums he has released during the past five decades. However, in this case, he has chosen to go back to previously released selections that were licensed to the aforementioned US record label. That compilation of vocal tracks and the Pressure Sounds release Dubbing With The Royals were the only ones that he didn’t release on his own labels so far. That’s probably the reason why he decided to reissue an expanded version of Roy Cousins Presents Wambesi All Stars. Those who have been hooked on Roy Cousins’ labels for a very long time and/or purchased one of the Heartbeat Records releases at the time might be a bit disappointed about what this CD has to offer. However, this does not detract from the high-quality output that’s on display here.

Golden Era

Included here are tunes he released on his Tamoki-Wambesi imprint during the golden era of reggae music. Featured artists include singers like Cornell Campbell, Ken Bob, Earl 16, Winston Jarrett, and Ken Parker, who are joined by deejays such as Charlie Chaplin, Prince Far I, and Baba Dread along with vocal groups The Gaylads, The Meditations, Knowledge, and, of course, The Royals. Although most of the material gathered on this compilation are goodies – some of them even deadly goods – there are almost inevitably also a few weaker tracks. The latter are Earl 16’s OK My Love, Winston Jarrett’s Sleeping In The Park, and Junior English’s reggaefied version of Smokey Robinson & The Miracles 1967 hit song I Second That Emotion. However, the highlights outnumber the weaker offerings. Among them are Charlie Chaplin’s humorous Diet Rock on the Movie Star riddim, Cornell Campbell’s superb Jah Jah Give Us Love, Prince Far I’s downright stellar Survival aka Zacky The High Priest (one of the last vocals he recorded), and The Royals’ Make Believe from the original LP release. But among the bonus tracks there are also highlights such as Glen Lewis’ Painted Face, Knowledge’s Mental Slavery, and Baba Dread’s Dread And Corporal Brown.

Cornell Campbell – Jah Jah Give Us Love

Prince Far I – Survival

The Royals – Make Believe


Where to get it