OK, so I have now had the chance to hear Paul’s mix. And very enjoyable it is too.
Contest aside, I would urge anyone who enjoyed my mix to check his as well (see link below). Taken as a whole our mixes cover (nearly) all bases of reggae from 60s rocksteady, to 80s dancehall, to early ragga, to bashment right up to the present day. It is up to people to decide what they like best (and vote here!)
That said, there are a few things which need to be commented on!
Paul showed up late, thereby disrespecting YOU: the listening public.
No MC. This is obviously fine for a juggling dance, but Paul demanded a “devastating” clash here!
No Studio One.
No UK artists.
No female vocals.
No surefire crowd-pleasers like “Rub A Dub Soldier”, “Walk And Skank” and “The Traffic Jam”.
If you look at his actual selection, then the first thing which comes to mind is “where is part two”? 11 tracks in 30 minutes is OK for a warm up, but I think people deserve more than that, y’know.
Paul starts with a classic: Dennis Brown over a hot Joe Gibbs dancehall riddim. But you have to bear in mind that he first heard that when I played it to him two years ago. It did briefly induce a pang of fear hearing it on his mix – but only because I thought Paul had been jotting down notes on his visits to my place.
Our Brigadier Jerrys also match. Fair play!
For my money Little John’s “What is Katty” has the edge over “Say What You’re Saying” on Paul’s. For anybody’s money Super Cat’s “Vineyard Style” (me) beats “Walk-A-Ton” (Paul) hands down.
There is no denying that Josey Wales’ “Kingston Hot” is a great tune, but I would argue that my Joe Gibbs twelves are even greater.
Similarly Jim Brown’s “In Time” is solid, but to these ears it’s outweighed by my mix of Early B and Carlton Livingstone.
I knew Paul would draw for some Blacker Dread because he likes his gear hard and mashed up. But I have to say I was suprised he opted for Anthony B over Capleton. Not only is the fireman’s tune the definitive version but I actually decided not to buy the Anthony B cut because of the lyric about “Prime Minister in a blouse and skirt / In the land of my birth”. This was one of many records attacking JA PM P.J. Patterson over his alleged homosexuality. Personally I feel that the ruling class should be attacked on the basis of their role in society and politics rather than what they may (or may not) get up to in the bedroom.
By including this tune in his mix Paul will not exactly be reassuring SusanC who has taken him to task for some “off colour” language in the comments boxes below. Now, I have known Paul for nearly 20 years and would be the first person to defend him against accusations of homophobia, but I will let him do the talking in this instance. I daresay there is a perfectly logical explanation, most plausibly that his finger slipped whilst buying all of his tunes off a certain german internet site.
This leaves us with the ragga selection that Paul signs off with. To give credit where credit is due, these would never have sat well with my selection. I personally don’t rate them over my tunes, but I can see that some people might. Paul has also been more choppy with his mixing. The contrasting styles make for a more interesting battle at the end of the day. It’s why I think we work better together, than against each other.
What I will say is that Droid has recently demonstrated that this era of JA music was far better when unhampered by riddimical history. Check his HUGE Blogariddims: Raggamortis Mix and be sure to read the wicked sleevenotes also.
But ultimately it isn’t my opinion on Paul’s mix which matters – over to YOU, the great listening public.