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Jackie Mittoo 1948 - 1990
Jackie Mittoo is the unsung hero of reggae music. Playing keyboards professionally from the age of thirteen, he went on to become the musical director at Clement 'Coxone' Dodd's Studio One label from 1965-69. The music he created there is as seminal a body of work as Berry Gordy's at Motown or Rudy Van Gelder's at Blue Note, and the classic rhythms he composed at this time are the foundation of dancehall reggae and still rock any session. Phil Darby
http://training.netgates.co.uk/phil/: One of his [Jackie Mittoo] best recordings was recorded in 1990, the year of his death, the wicked 'Wild Jockey' on Lloyd Barnes New York based Wackies label. Unfortunately this LP is currently unavailable, but Lloyd has recently begun re-issuing his back catalogue on CD, so hopefully we can look forward to a re-issue. [...]
Champion in the Arena 1976-1977 - Jackie Mittoo [CD, Amazon US] [FR] [DE] [UK]
1. Champion Of The Arena 2. Hot Milk 3. Darker Shade Of Black 4. Drum Song 5. The Sniper 6. Peace Treaty 7. North Of The Sun 8. Jumping Jack 9. Super Charge 10. One Step Forward 11. Ram Jam 12. Brain Mark 13. In Cold Blood 14. Earthquake 15. Atom Sounds 16. Death Trap 17. Clean Up The Arena
Jackie Mittoo, The Keyboard King at Studio One [Amazon UK] Jackie Mittoo's "The Keyboard King of Studio One" is rich with culture, warmth and invention. An original member of The Skatalites aged 15, keyboardist Jackie Mittoo was amongst the pioneers of ska and rocksteady. Yet what strikes you most about his playing on these predominantly solo artist recordings from the mid-'60s, is just how funky his syncopated style was. "Totally Together" sounds like a mellow take on Booker T, whilst the fat swagger of "Hot Tamale" sounds like a Meters roll. Yet it's the golden glow of the Isleys cover "Summer Breeze" which proves to be truly bewitching as its psychedelically spiked reggae opens up a myriad of possibilities. Beautiful.
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