of "Crucial Reggae From Outside Jamaica"



Even though many people instantly associate reggae music with Jamaica, it can't be denied that some notable reggae efforts have been produced outside Jamaica from the moment reggae's foremost ambassador Bob Marley had spreaded the reggae vibes all over the world. In recent years some of the most noteworthy reggae music has been coming from the small, yet incredibly rootsy island of St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands. So, any compilation set that includes tracks from seven - out of eleven featured - artists from St. Croix should be, at least, interesting enough to check out. And indeed it is!! "Crucial Reggae From Outside Jamaica", the second release on Skank Records, treats the listener to such great tracks like Iba's "Jah Lion", Abja's "War" and Danny I's wonderful "Soldier", which is delivered over a wicked riddim (also underpinning Bobo Ites solid "Heathen Rage"). However, these tunes are outmatched by Junior Daniel's "Behold" and "Out Of Control" by Ankh Water. Both artists deliver truly fantastic efforts and one should be on the lookout for their upcoming releases. Other noteworthy tunes on this cd are Ossie Dellimore's powerful "Downpressor Man", Bambu Station's "Pass It", Nasio Fontaine's "Riding On" and the wicked album opener "Clear Night" by California-based band Mongoose. A portion of the proceeds of each cd will be donated to Doctors Without Borders to help those in need the world over.
Teacher & Mr. T. (

"Crucial Reggae From Outside Jamaica" is the second release from Skank Records, following up his re-release of Ossie Dellimore's "Freedom's Journal," and judging by the Professor's impeccable taste one has to hope that more soon come. This disc is intended to showcase the wealth of roots reggae currently rising up from the States and Canada, and some Caribbean hotbeds such as St. Croix, St. Thomas, St. Vincent and Dominica. Those who think Jamaica has the market cornered on modern roots need to listen to this stellar collection of tunes which have all been released previously, but many of which are hard to find. One of these tracks leads off the set- Mongoose's incredible "Clear Night." Danny-I's "Soldier" and Bobo-Ites' "Heathen Rage" are two massive tunes from the impossible-to-find "Eastbound II" album, and Ankh Watep and Junior Daniel are featured from "Talkin' Roots" and "Weep Not," respectively. Groundation is one of the pre-eminent modern groups from the US and are appropriately featured with "Something More." "Pass It" is one of the many awesome tracks from Bambu Station's "One Day," and Iba is featured with the title track from "Jah Lion." Nasio of course is possibly the greatest solo roots artist of our time, and it's fitting that the Professor has chosen one of the best songs from each of his three albums, particularly the closer to this set, "Riding On." Ossie Dellimore's "Downpressor Man" and Abja's "War" round out a disc that's all killer from start to finish. Plus, Professor Skank has gone the extra mile with a very informative 16 page booklet that includes the lyrics to each track. This has obviously been a labor of love for him, and he's succeeded in compiling a crucial sampling of some of the hottest sounds in today's roots reggae scene. THIS is exactly what Creation Steppin' is attempting to forward to the massive, and Bahilman salutes this album wholeheartedly. Click the banner on the Creation Steppin' homepage to get it straight from the source. Disclaimer: Skank Productions is an advertiser with Creation Steppin', but this album would've received 5 stars anyway!
Bahilman (

Got my copy of CRUCIAL REGGAE from Outside Jamaica today and I must say it is outstanding! A delightful compilation of 11 artist, and 13 tracks from the US, Caribbean and Canada comprise this smooth listen of Progressive Roots Consciousness. From Maimon's sweet vocals in Clear Night by his band Mongoose (brings back sweet memories of going to see Mongoose with the late Joe Higgs. Mongoose was one of his favorites!) to the luxuriantly rich voice of Nasio Fontaine on Riding On. Professor Skank has juxtaposed some of his favorite tracks guaranteed to please in a package that includes plenty of colorful graphics within the 16 page booklet. Not only is the music totally inspiring but I especially appreciate all the time and effort DJ Professor Skank has spent to not only scribe all lyrics, the albums from whence they came as well as their websites and thoughtfully credited all of the talented musicians from each track as well. On a score of one to five I give this CD a five. You must get it, you will not be disappointed!
Anna Fisher (

"Crucial Reggae From Outside Jamaica" is the second release on Skank Records and I can see them scoring big in the future with various artists compilations. I am usually suspicious of any reggae not really from Jamaica, but of course, Jah know "reggae gone international" a long time ago. I wasn't familiar with any of these groups, so I can honestly say that I went into this with an open mind, and a conscious one at that. This compilation will go down in roots reggae history as one of the great various artist collections. Skank Productions must have had a bounty of tracks to choose these 13 tracks from, every one is strong. Very conscious Rastafarian style lyrics throughout this release as well, yet not borrowed cliches that have bogged down the reggae scene. It is in the spirit of the great classics of Jamaican "roots music" (Isreal Vibration, Wailers, etc.). No recycled riddims here, these tunes are all fresh, original material. At first, I didn't get the vocalists' style - they challenged my normal tastes in singers - but on repeated listenings, it lures you in, with its exotic qualities. Yes, this is very exotic stuff (that's a good thing!), strange and mystic - like all great roots music - it is reflecting off Jamaica, mirroring the vibes and the lessons learned from years of reggae. Listen to it people, it nice!
Joe "Mighty Striker"

To see what THE BEAT had to say in its February 2005 issue