We are very proud to announce the first compilation of JDI material , a rare label treasured by collectors from all four corners of the world. The label ran for almost 3 years between 1965 to 1967 during the hot Ska and Rock Steady period. JDI productions had a unique hi-fashion style, different from the likes of Studio One and Prince Buster productions. The two JDI bands - The Diamonds and Los Caballeros were housed residents at the Johnson’s Drive Inn premises owned by the man himself Mr Copley Johnson with tip top singers like Lloyd Williams and Roy Panton on vocal duties. When you listen to the JDI releases , you can actually feel the vibes of the JDI night club at that present time ! The JDI band members included a young Karl “cannonball” Bryan, Sammy Ismay, Freddie Butler (brother of well know keyboardist Leslie Butler) and Lloyd Delpratt. Mr Brian Keyo provides great liner notes once again ! We hope you enjoy our new release. Available on Japanese Rock A Shacka label in CD digipak format, LP and digital download.
Many Reggae aficionados see the concentrated phase of Rock Steady between 1967 – 1969 as the Carribean’s most productive era of all time.
Never before had such sweet melodies, inspiring rhythms and beautiful love lyrics come together. Numerous Soul hits by the likes of Curtis Mayfield, The Impressions, The Supremes all got the bass-driven, Jamaican style treatment. “The Bunny Lee Rock Steady Years” collects some of the most essential and rarest songs of that era – in a better sound quality than ever before! It showcases a wealth of soulful singers, ranging from top acts like Slim Smith (also lead-singer in the Techniques and Uniques) or Alton Ellis to the rather unknown Cnythia Richards or Webber Sisters.All songs were produced by Bunny Lee, one of the greatest Jamaican producers, who had one Rock Steady hit after another - finally earning him the nickname “Striker“. His star continued to shine way into the late Seventies. At the outset of the decade he had considerable success with Slim Smith und Cornel Campbell, he unearthed Johnny Clarke and revolutionised Roots Reggae with the Aggrovators and Sly & Robbie with their flying cymbal sound. He was one of the first to spot the extraordinary potential of King Tubby and his new creations in Dub and gave his records to Tubby for the final mix. The archive of Bunny Lee productions stretches to several thousands songs. Even his earliest hits have grown old gracefully and are as memorable as ever: who could forget “My Conversation“ or “Born To Love You“, “Long Time Me No See You Girl“ or “Let Me Go Girl“. His trademark has become the captain’s cap he always seems to be wearing (in a variety of colours).
This compilation is a valuable slice of history for Reggae and Soul fans alike, for lovers of great voices, for those who do not confuse “cool“ with cold and appreciate a good love song when it comes from the heart.
"“Put The Stereo On” is launched on authorised versions from Studio One, Treasure Isle & Bunny Lee. Whether it’s “as good as old” gems like the title track “Put The Stereo On” (a record so in-demand the dancehall government have had to step in to authorize it’s immediate release), the straight to the heart romantic beat of “Happiest Day Of My Life” or the awesome word, sound & power of “Thy Shall Love” Gappy has it all under lock and key, he can sing like Tarrus and spit lyrics like Kartel and displays this stunning versatility both on stage and in the studio."