Good Monday morning to the Flea Market Funk Family. I trust that all of you had a great weekend, and that you had some good digs as the weather here on the East Coast was good enough to get out on a Saturday and Sunday afternoon, minus the torrential downpours on Saturday night. I had a busy weekend, DJing at a new spot here in Asbury Park called Mattison Park. We’re trying to get another weekly going, a no drama, stress free Deep Funk, Soul, Reggae and Classic Hip Hop night with a name TBD. Also, big up to the Liverpool lads who lay top of the table by 3 points after beating Chelsea with a goal by Xabi Alonso (who would have thought?). Maybe next time Big Man! Today we’re gonna move forward a bit, with some conscious Dancehall from a teenage, Little Lenny, with “Gun in A Baggie” from 1990 on RAS Records.
When I found this, it looked so interesting that I couldn’t not pick it up. As I’ve said many times before, Reggae (any genre) is pretty much hard to come by at the Spot. There have been some spells where a few guys would find a few crates and they would be gone so quick. This Lp turned up in a random crate, and even though it’s only 18 years old (a year older than Little Lenny was when he made this record), I think it’s FMF worthy. Basically this song is a call to all me to watch out for the girls, because they have a gun in their baggy. The baggy being their panties, and the gun being gonorrhea. It’s as simple as that, or one would think so. This record almost wasn’t even made. They said the subject was too controversial. Little Lenny wasn’t having it. So, with the backing of the Firehouse Crew, Dave Kelly and George Miller on Drums, Danny Dennis on Bass, Paul “Wrong Move” Crosdale on Keyboards, and the programming of Anthony Kelly, a conscious hit was born. As soon as it would hit the dancehall, the side would become a hit. Immediately banned from the radio in Jamaica, it ruled the dancehall in 1989. Eventually becoming one of the top requested songs in the dancehall, the record would go on to sell over 20,000 copies initially. It became so popular that a clean version was made entitled “Healthy Body”, which went directly to number one, propelling Little Lenny into the spotlight as an overnight sensation. His bio says Little Lenny has lyrics to kill, but we really haven’t heard much from him, so possibly the overnight sensation was just a flash in the pan?
This record was recorded 10 years in on Reggae powerhouse RAS (Real Authentic Sound), who were founded by Doctor Dread in 1979, and rubs elbows with such Reggae luminaries as Black Uhuru, Don Carlos, Inner Circle, Culture, Junior Reid, Yellowman, J.C. Lodge and Freddie McGregor. RAS has always been well known for being the real deal, and breaking musical boundaries with over 300 releases by a who’s who of Reggae. Throw Little Lenny in this mix with this “burning sensation” of a Dancehall record. See you midweek after a NY Red Bull player party. Stories, photos, and shenanigans to follow. Keep Diggin’!