Al Brown / Paolo DubFiles Baldini – Dub Cuts
1 Dub Me Again
2 Dub Of Books
3 Ghetto Situation
4 Liquid Dub Part 1
5 Hungry Dub Part 1
6 Poor And Simple Version
7 Family Version
8 Ghetto Love Part 1
9 Liquid Dream feat. Tokie Mitsuhiro
10 New Family
11 Dub On The Land
12 Tribulation Dub Part 1
13 Dub Me Again Part 2
After having engaged Paolo ‘Dubfiles’ Baldini to remix tracks done by Barry Brown for producer Bunny ‘Striker’ Lee as well as tracks from The Aggrovators, Pressure Sounds have continued their collaboration with the top class dub extraordinary performer, bass player, mixologist, and producer from Italy. This isn’t really surprising as Barry Brown’s album Praises showed that he’s capable of doing a remix project extremely well. This next project he was asked to work on was Be El Ze Bub by Al Brown and The Inner Force Band, a 1990 album that has never been fully released before. It was only released on audio cassette by Axis Records. The tapes of the original recordings have been restored and were then mixed by Paolo ‘DubFiles’ Baldini who blended the music from the original tapes with overdubs.
Like many others, it was at Studio One that smooth reggae singer Al Brown recorded his first tunes under the name Irving brown. These included titles such as I’m Still Around, Run Come, Today, and Shock Attack. After his first solo recordings he joined a group called the Volcanoes an then teamed up with the Skin Flesh & Bones with whom he recorded his version of Al Green’s Here I Am Baby in a reggae style. It was this song that gave him a minor hit in the UK and eventually led to the release of his 1974 Geoffrey c|hung produced debut album Here I Am Baby for Trojan Records – in Jamaica released by Tit For That Records. Although he released several singles during the rest of the 1970s, he failed to build on the success of Here I Am Baby. In the 1980s, not much was heard from Al Brown anymore. He reappeared in 1991 with a new band called The Inner Force Band. A promo photograph of the band – most likey published around the release of the Be El Ze Bub cassette – shows that the band consisted of five musicians with the picture of Al Brown scanned into it.
The original 10 tracks that were released on cassette were recorded in Jamaica at Channel One and Aquarius Studios and mixed by Philip Smart at HC&F Recording Studio in Freeport, New York, and Fatta Marshall at the Mixing Lab in Kingston. Production work was done by Al Brown and The Inner Force Band. The band members were “Paulie” Stone (drums), “FM” Stone (bass), “Pablo” Stone (keyboards), “Tommy” Mills (rhythm guitar), “Sammy” Garraway (lead & rhythm guitar) and Karen “Kae Dee” Downie (vocals). Robbie Lynn (keyboards) and Dean Fraser (saxophone) were involved in the album as guest musicians. Apart from new tracks, the Be El Ze Bub set features a cover version of The Heptones’ Book Of Rules and a new version of Here I Am Baby. In 1993, a compilation cassette from Al Brown & Inner Force was released titled Live In Chicago.
The vinyl LP features lovely dub versions of 7 tracks that were selected from the original 10-track release with one of them – Ghetto Situation – used twice. Not included are dubbed out versions of Be El Ze Bub, Here I Am Baby and Daily News. Besides the 8 dub cuts that are featured on the LP, there are 5 extra tracks – including 2 dub versions of Daily News – added to the CD. Throughout the LP and CD the listener is treated to Paolo ‘DubFiles’ Baldini’s masterful use of the mixing board. He avoids all kinds of mannerisms and knows exactly what he’s doing when he dubs out the tracks. It keeps things fresh and interesting all the way, which can perhaps best be experienced when he delivers two dub versions of the same track, which he does here several times. The Italian dub maestro hasn’t limit himself to remixing the musical backdrops but has also chosen to let vocal snippets going in and out of the mix. This is praiseworthy as it not only gives the dubs some extra appeal but also enables one to easily identify the vocal counterparts. All dub versions are truly worthwhile hearing which makes this a thoroughly entertaining album. Especially noteworthy are the dub versions of Mass Liquidation, Liquid Dub Part 2 and Liquid Dream, with the latter featuring vibraphone play from Toike Mitsuhiro. Other favourite dub pieces are Hungry Dub Part 1 (Hungry Mouth), Poor And Simple Version (Poor And Simple Man) and Dub On The Land (Daily News).
(The original vocal album can be heard on YouTube by clicking HERE.)