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Tuffer Than Stone

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Album Review

The Ethiopians first came on the scene before there was such a thing as reggae — like their contemporaries the Maytals and the Wailers, they started out in the mid-1960s, singing political and religious message songs in tight harmony over the ska and rocksteady rhythms that would soon slow and thicken into that familiar one-drop reggae beat. It's pretty amazing that the Ethiopians (in the person of lead singer Leonard Dillon) are still recording; even more impressive is the continued quality of the music. The latest offering from Dillon features 16 tracks of outstanding modern roots reggae. Instead of the traditional male harmony trio, Dillon is here supported by two female backing singers, and the music is provided by a crack team of Jamaican session players that includes a full complement of Nyabinghi drummers. Dillon's voice has mellowed somewhat with age, but his technique is still impeccable. Highlight tracks include the churning title song, "Throne of Justice," and the horn-driven "Africa Is Our Home." Excellent.


Formed: 1966

Genre: Reggae

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Essentially a mouthpiece for singer and songwriter Leonard Dillon, the Ethiopians were one of Jamaica's most influential vocal groups during their heyday. Not only did the duo (completed by Stephen Taylor) spearhead the transition between ska and rocksteady, Dillon's heavily Rastafarian lyrics also paved the way for the socially conscious roots reggae era that was to come. Born in Port Antonio in 1942, Dillon grew up in a Christian family and discovered music through their church. Having written...
Full bio
Tuffer Than Stone, The Ethiopians
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  • 8,99 €
  • Genres: Reggae, Music, Ska
  • Released: 19 October 1999

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