Small Axe Bookzine 28 – The Humble Commission Story

by Dec 13, 2021Reviews, Writings

Small Axe Bookzine 28 – The Humble Commission Story

Author: Joakim Kalcidis
Publisher:  Muzik Tree & I&Ites 2021
Published: August 2021
Book: A5 Paperback / 52 pages

The Humble Commission Story

Many stories related to reggae’s history have been told and appeared in books, magazines, and on specialized websites and blogs. In some cases these stories, for example in case of Bob Marley, became less interesting for others than the obsessive Marley fan when they started to appear over and over again while nothing really new was told. However, the stories that are of real interest to the avid, long-term reggae fan are the untold ones.

Small Axe Bookzine 28 – The Humble Commission Story

One of them is the story of the Humble Commission label. It was Sweden-based reggae fan and collector Joakim Kalcidis who, in 2008, saw a selection of records (two singles and a showcase LP) turning up for sale on an obscure label called Humble Commission. Upon listening to the showcase LP he was wondering how it could be that reggae music of this caliber, which was recorded and released about 25 years earlier, could have gone under the radar for so long.

He found out that the seller of these records was a white guy from Chicago called Jason Stuart. He was the owner, producer, and arranger of the music. Joakim Kalcidis managed to come in contact with him and set up an interview which was conducted over the phone in the winter of 2009. Twelve years after the interview took place, the transcription of that interview – with the addition of reviews of the Showcase LP and the two 7″ singles by Deadly Headley and Midnight Riders – has been published in bookzine format in collaboration with Ray Hurford’s Muzik Tree. “The Humble Commission Story” is a fascinating read, telling the story of a young man who, in the 1980s, went to Jamaica, became friends with people like Anthony Johnson, Steely Johnson of Steely & Clevie, and Wesley Tinglin of The Viceroys, and ended up recording riddims and tunes at Channel One Studio with artists like the aforementioned Deadly Headley and Midnight Riders, and Angella Prince, Reggae George, and Barry Brown. Those who are interested in “The Humble Commission Story” can purchase the bookzine via Amazon. Recommended!


Side A
1. Angella Prince – Give Jah Love
2. Angella Prince – Give Jah Love Dub
3. Reggae George – Armagiddeon Man
4. Reggae George – Armagiddeon Man Dub
5. Barry Brown – Outside Girl
6. Barry Brown – Outside Girl Dub

Side B
1. Reggae George – Never Hang Your Hat
2. Reggae George – Never Hang Your Hat Dub
3. Angella Prince – Love You
4. Angella Prince – Love You Dub
5. Barry Brown – The Emperor
6, Barry Brown – The Emperor Dub