Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Pay pals

More album samplers: this time, Pay It All Back Vol. 1, the first in On-U Sound's long-running series of budget-priced introductions to the label. I’ve selected the cut that kicks off the album, and which sets the bar pretty high for the rest of the LP: Bedward The Flying Preacher by Singers and Players.

The man with the gravelly voice is Prince Far I, who was shot to death in Jamaica in 1983, not long before Pay It All Back was released. However, he recorded so many vocals for producer Adrian Sherwood that his voice keeps cropping up many years after his death; he played a prominent part in Primal Scream’s Echo Dek, for example, some 14 years after he collected his last royalty cheque. Along with artists like Eskimo Fox, Crucial Tony, Deadly Headley, Keith Levene and Ari Up, Prince Far I was the backbone of the On-U label in its first five years, and is sorely missed.

(As per, I don’t actually own a digital version of this album, and I’m not faffing about with turntables connected to computers right now, so what you’re getting is the version of the track from the Singers and Players album Staggering Heights. A slight cheat, but if memory serves, this version is more or less identical, though the Pay It All Back version starts with some echoey drumming taken from (I think) Pounding System by The Dub Syndicate.)

Check the rest of the album, which features tracks by short-lived artistes such as Voice of Authority and The Circuit, as well as long-serving On-U warhorses such as African Headcharge and Mark Stewart ; the original vinyl, which retailed for a princely £1.49, is hard to find, but CD reissues are relatively easy to come by.

Download Bedward The Flying Preacher by Singers and Players (Mp3) (deleted Aug 2009)

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