Singers And Players – Situation 2 Records – 1982

Dungeon / Merchant Ship / Jah Army Band / Prodigal son / Follower

Water The Garden / Resolution Parts 1 + 2 / Thing Called Love / Cha-Ris-Ma

This post dedicated to Sam ex-Heretics and good chum to this KYPP site, who mentioned this collective of artists in a comment on a recent Creation Rebel post.

Sam, I have all the Singers And Players LP’s here at Penguin Towers (this LP uploaded tonight being the second release) and I also have a fair amount of New Age Steppers material, another collection of artists that was mentioned in other comments on that post (and others throughout the years). I will get to upload some of them during the months ahead. Plenty more ONU Sound material on this site already if you care to use the search function.

Recorded in 1981 and released on the Beggars Banquet subsidiary Situation 2 in February of the year after, the Singers & Players “Revenge Of The Underdog” bore the imprint “another 1992 on-u sound creation”.

The album provided a quick follow-up set to “War Of Words” which originally had been released by the historically ultra-hip 99 Record label out of New York City. As on its predecessor “Revenge of the underdog” featured the combined vocal and DJ talents of Bim Sherman and Lizard Logan with Prince Far I and Jah Woosh. Trademark On-U dub outings were also in evidence from boy producer Sherwood – and it is important to recall that at the time these were regarded by some of London’s reggae critical mafia as “excessive white boy studio doodlings” and not an early clue to the new direction. The music did and still does dash away the ramblings of those more suited to reviewing garden furniture.

The album opens with a classic sufferer’s song originally voiced by the Wailing Souls “Dungeon”. The tune was released in Jamaica circa 1971 as a 7″ on the Mafiatone label and appeared in the UK via Punch. A copy was recently sold in London for a hundred cool notes sterling. However the album writing credit to G.Miller (Glen Miller) was taken from a lesser cover version issued via Pama Records and now it should be known that Wailing Souls have the rightful claim. Having said all this its a fine reading of the tune from Lizard, with Far I cleansing the bowels of the “Merchant Ship” on the DJ version.

Far I’s stinging introduction to “Prodigal Son” (a version of Bob Andy’s “Unchained) is worth the price of this album alone, let alone the half-chanted half-crooned “Cha-ris-ma” which has got to be one of the most bizarre tunes the Prince ever cut!

The track known here as “Resolution (Part 2/Version 2) is in fact a take on the Bim Sherman tune “World Of Dispensation” which the singer originally voiced on a Scorpio 7″ pre-release in 1978 and remains one of the artist’s favourite and most enduring rhythms.

Jah Woosh, who features on “Follower” was a long-time friend of Sherwood and in fact the producer is godfather to Woosh’s son.

The original sleeve art of “Revenge Of The Underdog” is comprised of two black and white photos. On the reverse we find a youthful Style Scott caught mostly in shadow, but on the front Far I is captured concentrating in a holy scripture “pose” perusing the Sherwood family bible – surely a reggae classic!

Steve Barker – On the Wire 

  1. dan i
    dan i
    October 22, 2009 at 3:42 pm

    nice link devo, cheers for that

  2. Sam
    October 22, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    Cheers Penguin! The one I had has something called (I think) ‘World of Dispensation’ or something similar. I’m sure it’s not actually called that. Good album…thanks again mister!


  3. Penguin
    Penguin • Post Author •
    October 22, 2009 at 10:08 pm

    That track you mentioned is on the debut LP ‘War Of Words’ Sam. Straight after the best track on that LP ‘Reaching The Badman’. As I mentioned in the post I will lob some more up at some point.

  4. Sam
    October 23, 2009 at 1:40 am

    That’s the one.

  5. baronvonzubb
    October 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm

    ugly bugger even then xx

  6. Sam
    October 28, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    I think I look quite fetching. That’s someone’s blood on that photo by the way.

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