Articles Comments

» BREAKING NEWS, GUEST RUNDOWNS » TENOR SAW: DANCEHALL’S UNIQUE VOICE!

TENOR SAW: DANCEHALL’S UNIQUE VOICE!

By Howard Campbell
Observer senior writer

 

Dancehall music has produced its share of unique artists. One of them was singer Clive Bright, otherwise known as Tenor Saw.

Tenna saw

Like many of those standout acts, Tenor Saw died early, in 1988 at age 22. But he made a mark through prolific recordings, leaving a catalogue of songs that still rock dancehalls and radio stations from Kingston to Quebec, New York, London, and Tokyo.

Despite a troubled childhood, Tenor Saw rose to prominence by working with some of the artists and producers who defined 1980s dancehall — Sugar Minott and Lloyd “King Jammy” James.

It was the latter who produced Saw’s breakout hit, Pumpkin Belly, a play on an old Jamaica proverb, which was recorded in 1984 on the sensational Sleng Teng beat.

tenna saw1

The song announced a singer with a rare sound who was equally at home performing live or in the recording studio.

Another signature song was Ring The Alarm, which was produced by Winston Riley on the revered Stalag rhythm. It remains the ultimate ‘kill a soun’ anthem revered by hardcore dancehall and hip hop fans.

Tenor Saw came up in an era when the artist could enter a dancehall unknown and walk out as a star. Nearly 30 years after his death, few can match his unique quality.

Written by

Filed under: BREAKING NEWS, GUEST RUNDOWNS

%d bloggers like this: