Various Artists

Studio One Showcase, Vol. 1

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About an hour's worth of 12" mixes of popular reggae songs, done (apparently -- there are only a few sentences' worth of liner notes) in the 1970s. These are cuts by artists of moderate renown (the Heptones, Alton Ellis) or more obscure reputation (the Bassies, the Tonettes), extended or changed via dub effects and editing into tracks lasting from five to eight minutes. It's probably of equal appeal whether you're more interested in vintage vocal reggae or early dub and dance mix sounds. Because they're constructed around vocal cuts, though, they'll hold the attention of fans who like songs better than dub or dance-mix reggae. The tunes are lilting and soulful, particularly those by the Heptones. The 1999 CD release has three bonus tracks of mixes of cuts by the Tonettes, Cornel Campbell, and Johnny Osbourne not on the original LP.

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