“I Mean It”: Eric Donaldson, That Little Sneak

Thanks to Eric Donaldson’s bio on the Trojan Records website (from the previous post)     I found cause to kick myself for not making the connection that Eric is also the distinctive lead voice behind 1968’s great rocksteady single by The West Indians, “I Mean It” — with Lyn Taitt and his fabulous Jets:

“I Mean It”     The West Indians     1968

Says Trojan:

“Eric embarked on a musical career in 1964 when he recorded acetates for Clement ‘Coxsone’ Dodd at Studio One and Duke Reid at Treasure Isle Studios.  Following his experience of recording exclusive dub plates for the island’s leading Sound Systems, Eric was inspired to form a vocal group, suitably named the West Indians.  He recruited Leslie Burke and Hector Brooks to provide backing harmonies that melodiously punctuated his incredible falsetto.  The group initially worked with J.J. Johnson who in 1968 produced their notable hit ‘Right On Time’, alongside ‘Falling In Love’, ‘Hokey Pokey’ and ‘I Mean It'”.

J.J. Johnson would also issue on his Sir J.J. label,The Ethiopians’ great rocksteady and early reggae singles recorded between the years 1968-1973: