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HORACE ANDY – “IT’S HARD SHAKING OFF THIS VINTAGE TAG!”

 

By Howard Campbell —

THE techno beats of Horace Andy’s latest songs bounce off the walls of his spacious West Kingston studio.

“Mek mi hear dat again,” he shouts to the engineer, then gives a thumbs-up to the final cut.

ANDY… it hard getting mi new songs play (PHOTO: REGGAEINC.COM)

The studio ‘audience’, which also includes aspiring artistes and technical crew, also approve the uptempo tracks.

Andy hopes the songs will also impress local disc jockeys whom he says have not been as receptive to his current recordings.

“It hard getting mi new songs play…All dem waan play is the old song dem, an’ wi give thanks, but mi not getting a thing from the old tune dem,” he told the Sunday Observer.

One Order is the name of the 62-year-old Andy’s latest album, a self-produced, 18-track marathon.

Hear Say is its lead single; a music video has also been released but Andy bemoans the lack of local response.

“Mi feel a way cause yuh do everything wey dem ask an’ it still not happening,” he says. “Is like mi musn’t do nuthin new.”

Lack of airplay for their new productions is a familiar cry from Jamaican artists from the 1960s and 1970s who struggle to shake the tag of ‘vintage artist’.

Not that Andy — whose many hits include Skylarking, Just Say Who, See a Man’s Face and Zion Gate — has not done well for himself in recent times.

Skylarking:albumcover

The past 12 years has seen him strike up a fruitful partnership with British trip-hop group, Massive Attack, whose members grew up in the city of Bristol listening to his classic songs.

Massive Attack have sampled several of those hits including Angel, Spying Glass and Girl I Love You. Andy has toured the world with them, winning new fans in countries like Israel and New Zealand.

“Massive really push mi to a next level…Everything yuh see I have is through Massive Attack,” he says.

From Allman Town, Horace Andy (real name Horace Hinds) is among the flood of roots-reggae artists who emerged in Jamaica during the 1970s.

His distinct falsetto was first recorded by producer Phil Pratt in the late 1960s. Next stop was Clement ‘Coxson’ Dodd’s Studio One where he cut some of his most famous songs such as Skylarking, Just Say Who and Mr Bassie.

Andy later recorded hit songs for Bunny Lee (Angel, Zion Gate), the Hoo Kim brothers (Girl I Love You) and Derrick Harriott (Lonely Woman).

Claiming he has been exploited by Jamaican producers, Andy says he has not recorded for a Jamaican producer in over 20 years.

Last month, he wrapped his latest collaborations with Massive Attack. He is scheduled to start a three-month world tour with them in June.

 

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