Our good friend Steve Barrow took some time to list several of his favorite reggae riddims for our new series titled The Riddims That Hit ‘Em.  For my Top 10 CLICK HERE.

For those who don’t know, Steve Barrow is a reggae historian, writer and producer.  He was co-founder of UK’s Daddy Kool Records and has worked with Honest Jon’s and freelanced with Island Records from 1979 to 1980 to compile a series of vinyl releases: Intensified, More Intensified, Catch The Beat and The Blue Beat Years.

In 1993 Barrow co-founded, along with Mick Hucknall, the Blood and Fire record label which specialized in reissuing older Jamaican music.  Barrow’s extensive knowledge of reggae was the catalyst for the creation of the Jamaican Reggae Archive Project which is funded and owned by Chris Blackwell with Barrow as researcher/interviewer. Between 1994 and 1995 Barrow (along with Don Letts and Rick Elwood) conducted a series of interviews with Jamaican artists for the Archive that aimed to preserve the history of the music; the interviews and other related material were an important factor in the writing of the book The Rough Guide to Reggae.  In 2004 Barrow co-founded the reggae reissue label Hot Pot Music.

On November 5th 2012 Soul Jazz published Reggae Soundsystem:  Original Reggae Album Cover Art compiled by Steve Barrow / Stuart Baker and Reggae 45 Soundsytem: The Label Art of Reggae Singles compiled by Steve Barrow / Noel Hawks / Stuart Baker.  Both may be purchased through Soul Jazz Records.  Lastly, forthcoming this autumn from Bear Family / Cree Records Germany two CDs & vinyl releases, compiled & annotated by Steve Barrow and Noel Hawks:  1. “Doing Your Thing;  More Soul From Jamdown 1970-1981” and 2. a SLY & ROBBIE compilation of DISCOMIX 12″ – as yet untitled…..!

CLICK HERE to read the MIDNIGHT RAVER interview with Steve Barrow.

“Song My Mother Used To Sing” – Dennis Brown [Aquarius] – version: “High Priest” – U Roy[Soul] [This one has more reverb and mix than U-Roy’s version on his own label].

“Ting A Ling” – Heptones [the first cut on the blank label] – version- “Dub Up A Ting” – Prince Jazzbo [Coxsone blank] Not sure about the actual title of the Jazzbo piece – it’s NOT “Natty Ting A Ling” which uses a later version of the rhythm !

“Real Rock” – Sound Dimension version “Funky In A Rubadub Style” – Ranking Joe [B&F dubplate] and 400 more versions –  including Willi Williams’  “Armagideon Time” recut…..

“Dancing Mood” Delroy Wilson [Coxsone]  & “Loving Mood” –  Alton Ellis’ recut  and the classic DJ version “Musical Alphabet” – Dennis Alcapone [Duke Reid].

“Dirty Harry” – Glen Brown & Dirty Harry  – all versions, but especially “Termination Dub” – GLB & KT and “Realize” Richie Mac.[all Pantomine label]

“Conquering Lion” Yabby You – all versions, especially the Big Youth, Pablo and dub cuts. And the Wayne Wade recut & dub version…..

“Train To Skaville” the Ethiopians – “People Listen” by President Brown [Taxi] and the other cuts by Amblique and Yami Bolo.

“Not Responsible” – Carlton & Leroy [Black  & White] – version: “A You Me Love” Dillinger’s dj cut and the dub side

“Ba Ba Boom” The Jamaicans, General Echo’s deejay cut “Boom Boom” & it’s dub for ‘Manzie’ Swaby,  and Willi Williams’ adaptation of the song for Sly & Robbie on Taxi, riding the ‘Armstrong’ rhythm…. .


“None Shall Escape The Judgement” – Johnny Clarke, “Jah Jah Dub” Dillinger & Johnny Clarke and “Arabian Sound Of Reggae” by Bobby Ellis & Val Bennett [Ja Attack].

“Bandulu” – Cornell Campbell,  and dj cut “Hard Time” by Ranking Dread