More Axe 8

by Feb 1, 2016Reviews, Writings

More Axe 8


Authors: Ray Hurford, Tero Kaski and others
Publisher: Muzik Tree & Black Star
Published: February 2016
Book: Paperback / 158 pages
ISBN: 951-95321-6-1

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Max Romeo


In 1998, Ray Hurford – in collaboration with the late Tero Kaski, a Reggae ambassador from Finland – published “More Axe 8”, subtitled “Mud Cannot Settle Without Water” (a proverb that comes from Vivien Morris-Brown’s “The Jamaican handbook Of Proverbs”). Now, almost two decades after the “More Axe 8” book was published, Ray Hurford has made it available again in re-printed paperback form.

More Axe 7

At the time of its initial release, “More Axe 8” actually followed up two previously issued books in the series, “More Axe” and “More Axe 7”. In case you’re wondering why there was a jump from the first “More Axe” book to “More Axe 7”, Ray Hurford explains it as follows: “More Axe” was meant to be part of a series of at least 6 books, comprising of every article and interview that had ever appeared in the Small Axe reggae fanzines 1-28. Needless to say it didn’t really work out like that. “More Axe 7” was all brand new material, none of it had ever appeared in Small Axe. With “More Axes 1-6″ already taken care of (on paper, if not in actual book form), the only number it could have was 7.”

In-Depth Interviews

The stirling “More Axe 8 – Mud Cannot Settle Without Water” is the result of a lot of co-operation, and thus it features contributions from people like Jim Dooley, Chuck Foster, Carter van Pelt, Tero Kaski, Beth & Dave Kingston, Dave Katz and Ray Hurford. Just like the 1987 first book and “More Axe 7”, this book comes with typically in depth interviews, conducted and transcribed by the aforementioned persons. Included is one of the most comprehensive and also one of the best “hard-core in-depth” style of interviews ever done with Earl Sixteen. Truly a must-read!! Furthermore there’s an intriguing interview with one of the master drummers of Jamaica, the late Winston Grennan, whose drumming style was extremely innovative and constantly evolving. Also noteworthy is the interview with Lynn Taitt, who had a lasting impact on the sounds of Ska, Rocksteady and Reggae. Also included are interviews with Dwight Pinkney, former lead guitarist of the Roots Radics, Max Romeo, deejay originator U.Roy, the underrated Admiral Tibbet and Clevie Browne, half of the well respected production team Steely & Clevie. Always good to read an interview with lesser known people, who have been involved in Reggae history like in this case Hedley Jones.