b. George Nooks, c.1958, Jamaica, West Indies. Initially a DJ appearing on discomix hits for Joe Gibbs Record Globe, in 1978 Nooks featured as Prince Mohammed on the remake of Dennis Brown’s ‘Money In My Pocket’. The b-side, ‘Cool Runnings’, was co-written with George and Errol Thompson and showed Nooks giving an exceptional performance. He also featured alongside Brown on ‘How Could I Leave’, identified as George Knooks (sic), the name under which he also recorded for Prince Tony Robinson on his hit ‘Light Up Your Spliff’. Nooks’ distinctive style was soon gracing releases for other producers, including Alvin ‘GG’ Ranglin’s ‘Hallelujah I Love Her So’. Nooks’ success led to sessions with Bunny Riley, resulting in ‘People Are You Ready’, which was remarkably similar to Tapper Zukie’s chant-and-response hit ‘Oh Lord’, and Nooks subsequently released his debut album, which included ‘Fat John Tom’, ‘Great Sounds Ska’ and ‘Natty Going Back To Africa’. The increasing violence in Kingston influenced Nooks, now recording under his real name, to record as a singer with his interpretation of Little Roy’s ‘Tribal War’, and the follow-up single, Errol Dunkley’s ‘Darling Ooh’. Nooks continued to concentrate on his singing career and with Donovan Germain released ‘We’re In This Love Together’, which crossed over into the mainstream, almost reaching the UK pop chart. Other releases include ‘Time For Love’, ‘My Heart Is Gone’, ‘Be Your Lover’, ‘Rocking Time’ and ‘Freedom Blues’. In the 90s Nooks continued to release the occasional song, notably ‘No One Else Will Do’, which when played as a dub plate was mistaken for a Dennis Brown tune. Examples of Nooks’ work surfaced on the Acid Jazz Records roots offshoot.
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