Panache Culture (meaning various cultures) was formed in 1986. The original line-up featured members from Senegal, Italy, Greece, Belgium and Morocco. As the band developed, additional members were recruited from Jamaica, England and Zaire. In the 80s the band was regarded as a studio outfit, often providing support for established reggae performers. The band enhanced their reputation when they were recruited to tour with Barry O’Hare’s X-Rated crew featuring sing-jay Hindu and veteran DJ Prezident Brown. Throughout the 90s the band’s hard work and diligence was rewarded with critical acclaim. The constant sessions and substantial touring commitments led to a tight sound that was clearly noticeable on the band’s debut, ‘Dreadlock Holiday’. Inspired by their successful European festival appearances the single proved a hit in Germany and Italy, and led to the release of Tell Them. Hailed as a ‘world reggae band’, the album featured contributions from the legendary Jamaican trombone player Rico Rodriguez and was mixed in London by Mad Professor. While the band enjoyed significant success in Europe they were not able to crossover into the important markets of the UK, USA or Jamaica. They released their second single, the indoctrinating ‘Rise And Live’, that sadly shared the same fate in that it was only successful on the European continent. The band’s second album, Travel In A Dream, featured 19 tracks demonstrating an interesting mixture of reggae and rai music. The project was mixed by the dextrous Mad Professor at his newly refurbished Ariwa Studios with overdubs provided by the Aswad horn section featuring Mike Rose. The variety of styles on the album led to favourable reviews from the world music media, while alienating hardcore reggae fans in spite of a storming ragga track featuring Supa Ranking.
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