Toots & the Maytals

Funky Kingston

Composed by Frederick Hibbert / Toots Hibbert

Song Review by

As with all his stable, The Maytals were initially shaken by the unexpected death of their producer Leslie Kong, but recovered quickly, recording the Slaytam Stoot album the following year with Kong's assistant Warwick Lyn. A year later, in 1973, the group returned to Dynamic Studio, with Lyn still in tow, but this time accompanied by Chris Blackwell and Dave Bloxham.

The result was the Funky Kingston album, and its title track was as funky as you would expect, an exhilarating blend of bright, bouncy reggae, with funky lead guitar. As usual, though, Blackwell couldn't leave well enough alone, adding overdubs back in Britain. However, in this case, the addition of the Sons of Jamaica's brass worked a treat, giving the song an even funkier feel.

As did Toots Hibbert himself, whose declarations of love for reggae and Kingston brook no argument, as he storms from his usual gospel inflected style to James Brown-ish infected vocals. Also released on single, funk was definitely flooding the island with this number.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Funky Kingston 1973 Mango 4:55
Time Tough: The Anthology 1996 Island Jamaica / Island 4:53
The Very Best of Toots & the Maytals [Music Club] 1997 Music Club Records 4:52
Jamaican Monkey Man 1998 Recall (UK) 4:56
Very Best of Toots & the Maytals [Polygram] 2000 Island 4:51
54-46 Was My Number: Anthology, 1964-2000 2002 Sanctuary 4:55
Essential Reggae [BMG] 2002
Various Artists
BMG Special Products 4:54
Sweet and Dandy: The Best of Toots & the Maytals 2002 Culture Press 0:00
Funky Kingston: Reggae Dancefloor Grooves 1968-74 2002
Various Artists
Trojan / Sanctuary 4:55
Club Dread 2004
Various Artists
Sanctuary 4:55