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Dubbin' It Live

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Album Review

Very high production values are the key to this 75-minute concert by Black Uhuru with Sly & Robbie recorded in July of 2001 when they closed the Paleo Festival in Nyon, Switzerland. The show is unedited and uncut, making for a wonderful viewing and listening experience. Producers Sly Dunbar, Robbie Shakespeare, and Guillaume Bougard do a superb job of capturing the moment, Bougard and Gaylord Bravo mixing the concert to perfection. The camera angles are excellent, and the cuts come quickly, but they manage to capture just about everything that is going on from musician to musician. The playing is very precise — and when it sounds like the group is getting ragged in parts, you know the bandmembers are just setting this attentive audience up. Toward the concert's conclusion they abandon the reggae for some hard-edged musical abandon. It's an intriguing transformation at the end of "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner" when a throbbing bassline gives way to a chugging guitar and some charging, energetic rock & roll that would have added a jolt had it been sprinkled through the show a little more liberally. There are three bonus tracks: "Solidarity," "I Love King Selassie," and "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner" with isolated camera footage, a feature that other DVD presentations should copy.


Formed: 1974 in Jamaica

Genre: Reggae

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The most successful of the second-generation reggae bands, Black Uhuru maintained their high quality despite numerous personnel changes in their 40-plus-year history. The first reggae band to win a Grammy award, for their 1983 album Anthem, Black Uhuru was called "The most dynamic and progressive reggae act of the 1970s and early '80s." The band, whose name comes from the Swahili word meaning "freedom," was formed in the Waterhouse district of Kingston by Don Carlos, Rudolph "Garth" Dennis, and...
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Dubbin' It Live, Black Uhuru
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