Horace Swaby, better known as Augustus Pablo, who died in May 1999, is here at Dubblog really no stranger. I have to admit that his premature death at the age of just 44 touched me deeply. The somewhat jazzy Far East sound of the exceptional musician and producer Augustus Pablo has always struck a chord with me. The first Augustus Pablo album to add to my collection was Tommy Cowan produced and mixed by the immortal King TubbyItal Dub“. Published by Trojan in 1974, Ital Dub“ is an ingenious snapshot and shows Augustus Pablo on his way to becoming a producer of his own works. Whether Peter Tosh or Augustus Pablo was the first to make the children's instrument melodica socially acceptable in reggae will most likely no longer be clarified.
A few days ago the album “Augustus Pablo & Rockers All Stars: Lightning & Thunder“ (Onlyroots) appeared. An incredible collection of previously unreleased and Dubplate mixes of the legendary Jah Shaka, heard here under the title "Gates of Zion" and a completely different mix to the original. The vocals come from the then very young George Nooks aka Prince Mohammed. The original reads "Yeah Dub' and is on the 'Chanting Dub With The Help Of The Father" by the Rockers All Stars. Surely other riddims will look familiar to you. So the King Tubby Meets Rockers Uptown's "Stop Them Jah" became "Leave The Dreadlocks" and "Omo Valley." Dub“. Another Jah Shaka favorite is the title track "Lightning & Thunder", here the mix was titled "Sons of Negus". And now comes my absolute highlight and the grandiose conclusion of the album: "All Nations" & "All Nations Dub“. Originally found on the 1975 Upsetters album: Return Of Wax entitled "One-Armed Boxer". So folks, there is actually a lot to discover on the "Lightning & Thunder" and as long as such delicacies are still slumbering in the archives, I am worried about the continued existence of the Dub/Reggae don't worry.
Even if you already know or even own countless Augustus Pablo albums, I can still strongly recommend listening to this release. In my opinion even an absolute must.