Zero to 180 – Three Minute Magic

Discoveries of a Pop Music Archaeologist

Tag: Coxsone Dodd

Early reggae
Zeroto180

Nora Dean’s Voice — Tremulous, Intriguing

I suspect I am hardly the only one who finds Nora Dean‘s voice so compelling — the emotional directness and its unique, tremulous quality. Given what little is known about Dean and how infrequently her voice was committed to disc, this only adds to the intrigue. Michael Garnice, creator of

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Bob Marley +/- the Wailers
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Early Wailers: Pre-Island Years

Thanks to the local public library, I am no longer the same person I once was after reading Roger Steffens‘ comprehensive and thoughtfully organized oral history of Bob Marley and, by extension, The Wailers, from their earliest days.  Halfway through the book I felt compelled to take notes about a

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"Can't You See"
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“Can’t You See”: Rare (?!) Wailers

Back in 1966 when The Wailers were three vocalists (and not a backing band for reggae music’s most famous artist), Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, and Bunny Wailer were under contract to Coxsone Dodd‘s Studio One label.  Recently, after re-watching the 1992 Peter Tosh documentary, Red X, I suddenly got the urge to

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"Small Garden"
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‘Scully’ & His Green Thumb

At one point in its week-long tribute to master percussionists, Noel ‘Scully‘ Simms and Uziah ‘Sticky‘ Thompson, Zero to 180 quoted Discogs.com’s bold claim that Simms is “arguably the first Jamaican artist to release a record single” — but then played the indignant card by loudly noting Discogs’ failure to

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"Take It Cool"
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‘Scully’ Advises: Take It Cool

$521 on Ebay confirms my suspicion that the swaggering rocksteady tunefulness of 1967’s “Take It Cool” was a breakout moment, artistically speaking, for master percussionist and sometime-vocalist, Noel ‘Scully‘ Simms: “Take It Cool“ Mr. Foundation (i.e., Noel ‘Zoot‘ Simms) 1967 * Would you believe someone paid the staggering sum of

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"Timo-Oh"
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Scully & Sticky: Percussion Pioneers

Scan the musician credits on classic Jamaican popular music from the 1960s and 70s (i.e., ska, rocksteady, reggae & dub), and odds are in your favor that you will see the name of at least one of these two percussionists: Noel ‘Scully’ Simms & Uziah ‘Sticky’ Thompson. Scully with Aston

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"Black Onion"
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“Black Onion”: Healing Organ

According to Doctors Across Borders, “when compared to every other natural remedy for auto-immune disorders,” black cumin (also known as black onion seed) “is the most effective” and “has the power to restore harmony.” Keyboardist, songwriter, and musical director, Jackie Mittoo, gets an organ workout, thanks to his musical compatriots

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"Ital Vibes"
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“Ital Vibes”: Vibraphonic Reggae

Reggae is another realm of popular music where the vibraphone so rarely makes a foray.  As a result, Jamaican vibraphonist, Lennie Hibbert, pretty much has the field all to himself, as the intersection of reggae and the vibes essentially begins and ends with this one soul. Hibbert’s theme song –

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"Christmas Time Is Here"
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Claymation Christmas (Is Here)

Someone went to great effort to animate “Christmas Time Is Here” by The Heptones in this charming claymation-style video: “Christmas Time Is Here“ The Heptones (196?) * This song provokes the question – Where exactly does rocksteady end and reggae begin? * “Christmas Time Is Here” can be found on Studio

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"Tea for Two"
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“Tea for Two”: Heptones at Studio One

Tip of the hat to Joe’s Record Paradise, Silver Spring’s legendary music store (that also sells 8-tracks, cassettes, 78s, books, magazines, videos – and includes a shrine to one-time Silver Spring resident, Root Boy Slim, plus lots of other great DC music memorabilia) for a sweet deal on a stack

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