The other day I had to get out of the house to get my youngest some milk. On the way is my local charity shop. Their records used to be a dollar, but since they have doubled in price, the records that come in are fewer and fewer. Now this place has given me some great records: Ruby Andrews on Zodiac for 49 cents, a grip of Hip Hop 12’s, Latin heat, even a few Jazz Lps to tide me over until the next dig. There are always your regular 80’s joints, Whipped Cream & Other Delights albums, plus enough Robert Goulet to satisfy the old folks home up the block, not my bag baby. I have heard tales of the first three Fela Kuti records getting pulled by a record dealer at the end of last year, but since the upping of the prices, it’s been kind of dry. However, the other day was a different story. I managed to pull more than a half dozen Reggae 12’s on labels such as Wackie’s, 56 Hope Road, Chopper Productions, and Freedom Sounds. Here’s a nice groover I pulled out of this haul: George Fullwood & Soul Syndicate Band, “Stop And Think It Over” on Freedom Sounds Records from 1999. Sounding more like 1974, this is an incredible adaptation.
Astley George Fullwood aka Fully Fullwood is a bass player out of Jamaica. In fact, he has played and worked with mostly every major artist that has come out of Jamaica in the last 30 years or so. His collaborations are a who’s who of Jamaica: Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Michael Rose, Mikey Dread, The Mighty Diamonds, Black Uhuru, Joe Higgs, Dennis Brown, Gregory Isaacs, Frankie Paul, Big Youth, U-Roy, Sister Carol, John Holt, Judy Mowatt, Ken Boothe, Andrew Tosh, Delroy Wilson, and more. With Peter Tosh, he was a member of the Word, Sound, Power Band, touring internationally up until his death. Fully was also the founder of George Fullwood & Soul Syndicate Band, who put out this adapted version of Barbara Acklin’s “Am I The Same Girl?” on 12″. Soul Syndicate had members Earl “Chinna’ Smith on guitar, Fully on Bass, and Bernard “Touter” Harvey on keys, with a rotating cast of notables such as Freddie McGregor on vocals, Horsemouth Wallace on drums, and Cleon Douglas among others. The core of the original band also recorded for the great Bunny Lee as the Aggrovators, who we all know lent their riddims to countless Reggae greats. Speaking of riddims, Soul Syndicate was responsible for the Stalag 17 riddim featuring Andel Collins on organ and produced by the great Winston Riley. [insert multiple airhorns here], so go and ring the alarm. This 12″ is exactly what we needed here at FMF for a Monday. I can honestly say that the Reggae genre has got the best cover versions of any genre, with maybe Punk Rock running a second. I’m happy to have dug this up, paper label and all. Groove away people.
Download the track here.
Soul Syndicate Band perform “I Feel Secure” from the documentary Word, Sound, Power
Watch the full movie here.