Black Uhuru

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Black Uhuru ("black freedom"), formed in 1974 by Derrick "Duckie" Simpson and propelled by the Afro-Arabic vocal style of Michael Rose and by the pseudo-Hebrew chanting of Sandra "Puma" Jones, coupled the subtle fervor of vocal groups with the hard sound of Sly Dunbar's and Robbie Shakespeare's rhythm section. Showcase (1979), also known as Vital Selection and Black Uhuru (1981) and Guess Who's Coming To Dinner (1981), is a compilation of their early singles, such as General Penitentiary (1978) and Guess Who's Coming To Dinner (1979). Sensimilla (1980) was their first album, a collection of melodic and intense jams. They became an international attraction by wrapping reggae and Rastafarianism into a slick production of drum-machines and synthesizers on Red (1981), including The Youth Of Englington (1981), Chill Out (1982) and Anthem (1983).

The Dub Factor (1983) was an excellent remix album.

Junior Reid replaced Michael Rose on Brutal (1986). Puma Jones died of cancer in 1990.

Positive (1987), Now (1990), Iron Storm (1991), Mystical Truth (1993) and Strongg (1994) were mediocre attempts at recapturing the audience's attention.

Sly and Robbie's bassist Robbie Shakespeare died in 2021.

(Copyright © 2003 Piero Scaruffi | Terms of use )
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