Byron Lee & The Dragonaires  , Uptown Top Ranking  
Byron Lee & The Dragonaires
Uptown Top Ranking
USA 2xLP 
Label: 17 North Parade
Release Year: 2015
Style: Reggae & Dancehall & Dub
 
  Tracks  
  Side One
A1. Frankenstein
A2. Watermelon Man
A3. Last Night
A4. Jamaica Ska
A5. Dumplin's
Side B
B1. Bata Cha Cha Cha
B2. Dragon’s Paradise
B3. From Russia With Love
B4. Goldfinger
B5. Ol’ Man River
Side C
C1. Soul Ska
C2. Rock Steady
C3. Slow Run
C4. Don't Call Me Nigger, Whitey (Version)
C5. Squeeze Up (Part 2)
Side D
D1. Apache
D2. Reggae Makossa
D3. We Five
D4. Hot Reggay
D5. Who-Dun-It?
 
  Finest Ska, Rocksteady, Reggae and Dub, new breed Club Hits, Boss sounds and popcorn in-demanders from 1964 to 1973. 20 classics including in-demand big money trophy tunes "Frankenstein", "Bata Cha Cha Cha", and "We Five", as well the fever inducing dance floor fillers "Apache", "Watermelon Man" and "Slow Run" and groundbreaking dub cuts from the board that eventually made it's way to King Tubby. This is Byron Lee – This is Uptown Top Ranking. Available as CD with 20 page booklet and 2LP-set in a gatefold sleeve, both with extensive notes by Noel Hawks

t r a c k b y t r a c k n o t e:
1. Jamaica Ska (1964): Top 30 Canadian hit, a deal with Atlantic Records and an appearance at the New York World's Fair in 1964
2. Frankenstein (1964): Always in-demand ska gem and maybe his best ever 45, original if you can find one can go for 100 GBP
3. Watermelon Man (1964): Herbie Hancock ska cover, forever in-demand on the mod jazz scene
4. Bata Cha Cha Cha (year TBC): Rare promo 45 made exclusively for the Bata shoe company - absolutely massive on the European popcorn scene
5. Dragon's Paradise (1962): Another in-demand and super-rare popcorn scene favorite
6. Dumplins (1960): Debut 45 and the 2nd ever release on the collectable Blue Beat label
7. From Russia With Love (1964): As well as appearing in the first James Bond movie 'Dr No' Byron Lee cut this sublime version of Lionel Bart¹s acclaimed theme to the follow up Bond film
8. Goldfinger (1966): Bond was back with a third movie and so was Byron giving the John Barry theme song the Dragonaires special treatment
9. Ol' Man River (1962): Fantastic solo's on this big band jazz showpiece version of the Showboat classic - released on the super rare promotional Red Stripe album 'Let's Have A Red Stripe Party'
10. Soul Ska (1967): Ken Lazarus feels the spirit delivering an inspired vocal on another Lee scorcher with inspired band horn solos
11. Last Night (1964): Shuffling on Mclemore Avenue, tremendous ska take on a Memphis classic from the Mark-Keys
12. Rock Steady (1967): Magnificent Jo Jo Bennett vocal contribution to this slow and moody, black and bluesy dance corker
13. Slow Run (1968): Horn driven soul styled instrumental, 'Every Day Will Be Like A Holiday' was the A-side and a sizeable hit but this flip side was and is the club classic
14. Who-Dun-It (1969): Superbad organ do-over of Monk Higgins hit sax funk workout
15. Hot Reggay (1970): Hot flute led reggae funk pant swinger
16. We Five (1970): Always in-demand Boss Sound organ groove
17. Squeeze Up Part 2 (1970): Uptown cut of the Bleechers 'Ease Up' came complete with a revolutionary early use of King Tubby¹s signature high pass filter on the version
18. Don't Call Me Nigger, Whitey Version (1970): Continuing to re-write dub history the soon to be sold to King Tubby MCI board in full effect at Dynamics
19. Apache (1973): In demand re-working of The Shadows classic that¹s lately caught the imagination of various scene making crossover DJ¹s , it¹s an album only cut that¹s ripe for a stand alone 45 release
20. Reggae Makossa (1973): Manu Dibango Afrobeat Reggae funk fusion
 
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