Clive Field Marshall

Poor House Rockers

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Clive Field Marshall is a dancehall DJ from the early days of the genre (1981) who has left hardly a footprint in the annals of reggae history, but whose Wackies debut was such an instant hit with record buyers that labelhead Lloyd Barnes was unable to keep the album in stock -- in fact, his retail clients outside of the New York area never even saw it before it sold out. Not surprisingly, it proves to be the strongest release so far in the distinguished Wackies reissue campaign. Marshall owes some of his style to the Lone Ranger, who was helping to define the nascent dancehall genre from his homebase in Jamaica at the time, but Marshall's delivery is original and creative enough to stand on its own. The rhythms (provided by the usual band of Wackies studio regulars) are rock-solid as well, and include both standard-issue Studio One adaptations and original material, such as the rhythm that backs up Marshall's quirky "Sheep Skin Gone Clear." Other highlights include his bemused account of a legal close call, entitled "State Trooper Style" (he was pulled over and ticketed for speeding, but the officer neglected to check for the enormous herb stash in the back of his car), and the title track, which draws on the influence of Michigan & Smiley. Strongly recommended to all fans of vintage dancehall reggae.

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