King Yellowman & The Mighty Josey Wales – Weh Dem A Go Do

Reggae records, especially good Reggae records are hard to come by in this area. Sure you’ll find the scant Studio 1 compilation, or maybe even a Prince Buster 45 here and there, but honestly, when stuff like this comes along, you have to pick it up. I’ve been fortunate to really pick up some great Reggae finds in the field, but it’s taken me 10 years + to really build my collection up to what it is now. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, when it surfaces, you need to get it, no questions asked. This record of course was a no brainer. It’s a classic cut done by two Reggae giants, all on one record. Here’s King Yellowman & The Mighty Josey Wales doing “Weh Dem A Go Do” from the Arrival Records 1983 Lp King Yellowman meets The Mighty Josey Wales.

Winston Foster aka King Yellowman was born in Kingston, Jamaica and had to overcome adversity from birth. Born an albino and in an orphanage, Yellowman launched his career by winning the Tasty Patties contest in Kingston. From there he would become a Jamaican favorite, and signing a contract with CBS Records. His boasting sounds and energetic performances have made him one of the most widely touring Reggae artists in the world. Diagnosed with jaw cancer in 1986 and only given 6 months to live, Yelloman overcame adversity once again after surgery. The riddim of one of his biggest hits “Zungguzungguguzungguzeng” , has been duplicated and used by many artists like BDP, Tupac, Dead Prez, Junior M.A.F.I.A., and a myriad of others. His place as a prominent Dancehall DeeJay in Reggae music puts him as a top artist of all time in the genre. Despite the hand life has dealt him, he still continues to tour, make music, and act as a Reggae ambassador throughout the world.

Joseph Winston Sterling, aka The Mighty Josey Wales was a founding father in the Dancehall genre. Wales (or the Colonel as he was also known) would go on to perform as a DJ with the Roots Unlimited Sound System in 1977. He made his name as part of the King SturGav Hi-Fi Sound System, headed up by U-Roy. He also joined forces with Charlie Chaplain and Brigadier Jerry to form a mighty alliance that ruled Reggae in the early 1980’s. The Sound System would be the Sound System in Jamaica at the time. He also did stints in Heny “Junjo” Lawes Volcano Sound System, as well as peforming on the smash Volcano hit: “Let Go Mi Hand”. His strict Rastafarism and purely concious lyrics would hold him back throughout his career, as the boasting, gun toting, bragadocious lyrics of the Dancehall ruled at the time. He would move from Lawes’ label to King Jammy’s in the 90’s, doing solo work and also collaborations with Beres Hammond, Tappa Zukie, Bobby Digital, while also mentoring young artists such as Shabba Ranks. He survived multiple gunshot wounds from a bar robbery in Jamaica, and reunited with the SturGav Hi-Fi Sound System for a tour sometime after that.

I’m pretty sure this is one of my favorite Reggae sides. Not only is there a a positive message in the U-N-I-T-Y, but the lickle (ok little) guitar riff throughout (with just the right enough of echo) has stuck to me for years. Here you have two of the best of their time, paired up and ready to battle as a team. This track was produced by Junjo Lawes with the tracks being laid down at Channel One. It’s a superb example of both of these artists, despite their separate adversities, coming together as one to put out a decent side as well as a decent full length. I’m going to try and pick out a bunch more Reggae sides for the upcoming weeks and keep working on the Special Request Mix Part II. Keep Diggin’!

King Yellowman & The Mighty Josey Wales – Weh Dem A Go Do from the Arrival Lp

4 responses to “King Yellowman & The Mighty Josey Wales – Weh Dem A Go Do

  1. somebody’s got to the the “yellowman story” His story is inspirational. Maybe vh-1 could do it. You know like they did the def leppard and beach boys story.

  2. Pingback: dancehall artists in the 90 s·

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