Sunday, May 24, 2015
Vivian Jackson and the Prophets found redemption in the apocalyptic spiritualism of this deep roots reggae revelation. Born in the Waterhouse ghetto district of Kingston, Jamaica, Jackson developed malnutrition which made him partially crippled and left him to fend for himself on the streets. He decided to become a recording artist after having heated debates with Rastafarians over the divinity of Jesus Christ.
Jackson would reveal: "You 'ave the Rasta culture, you 'ave the Bobo culture and you 'ave the Ites culture. Like you 'ave the Rasta man now, who call 'imself the wholesome Rasta man, dem worship Haile Selassie, Rasta Far I. My first home was with the Ites (heights) people - we use to 'ave a belief that the Almighty is a power wha' create Creation an' live within man. The Rasta man 'ave a belief that Haile Selassie was the returned Messiah, so you always 'ave a conflic' between reasonings ... Dem use to deal with Rastafari an' I deal with Jah through Jesus Christ ... I was reasoning, an' I was sayin' that I don't see Rastafari as the Supreme, because I say the Supreme live inside a we as temples, as a higher heights, the highest heights in Creation. An' it cause a big dispute with the whol' a dem Rasta man. Me hold on to my opinion, an' dem hold on to dem opinion, till it become boring. Aní then, all of a sudden the rain start up, an' dem go 'way, go sleep. When dem a sleep, it's like I hear someting, a sound, like a strange ting, inside a my thoughts - like an angel a sing. When the thunder roll, it come in like music to me. Me hear these sounds, yunno: 'King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Conquering Lion of the Tribe of Judah'. Me try sing along to the sounds weh me hear, an' eventually dem wake up an' a listen to me. Dem say tings like these - it sound like a new kind of sound wha' could go 'pon record, an' so me should a penetrate that an' go into recordin'. Dem jus' talkin' coincidentally, but me tek it serious, yunno ? From that moment me start go seek out studio, get fi understand what studio is like, what musicians is like. Me find out me a fi 'ave money fi book studio an' musician. So I go look fi this bredda weh name Leroy Wallace, wha' dem call Horsemoutí' an' sing the song to 'im, an' tell 'im the idea. 'Im say it sound like a new kind a sound fi come in a music. 'Im say 'im gonna bring a bass man an' a guitarist. 'Im was in a band name Generation Gap. Behind dem back, 'im tek 'way dem instruments an' bring dem 'pon the gully bank. The gully bank is a place a Waterhouse, the mos' remote place dem time. 'Im bring Chinna an' Family Man. When dem hear it, an' play the chords dem, dem say yes, it can go 'pon record. What it need then, it need money to do it ... We eat ital, 'an didn't sleep inside house, an I eventually reach hospital, an' dem say I 'ave malnutrition, ulcerated stomach, diarrhoea, pneumonia; dem say I 'ave brain fever, say I eat too much of one ting, less of another ting, an' dem a fi operate on mi stomach. So when I did jus' come from hospital, me couldn't work, an' to find the money, it was very difficult. The only money I could find was to hire the studio - Dynamic studio - fi half an hour. All me could buy was a 2-inch tape. But the musicians dem so believe in the song that dem say, bwoy, dem will play free, beca' dem feel say a message like this deserve fi reach earth, an' dem play the music. Karl Pitterson was the engineer, an' when the music finish, 'im say that is the last 'im a go work with Dynamics, an' 'im leave the work ... Me carry the tape, jus' the riddim, go to King Tubby's, an' Tubbs play the tape. When Tubbs hear the tape, 'im get fascinated over it. Me jus' sing the song fi convince 'im it was mine. 'Im say, alright, 'im will voice it - beca' 'im agree too, say it sound like this suppose to reach the earth - an' me voice it. Then it tek me another six month before me could a find the money weh me could a press a hundred of the record. I never record before, an' I nah want anyone fi know it was me, so if it flop me won't get the blame. Well, eventually I play it to people, to sound man, an' every one I play it to like it, an' patronize it. After the hundred sell off, I go back an' press another two hundred, an' when that sell I press five hundred, an' then it start get popular. People want to know who sing it. I nah tell dem that it me. Me jus' say is Tubby me a sell it for ... That's the time, now, that Tubbs start mek dem know say is me. Me did name the song 'Conquering Lion', but when people ask fi the song, through me say at the beginning 'Be-You, Yabby Yabby You', is dat dem ask for. Dem always ask fi the song as 'Yabby You'. When dem realise is me sing it now, dem start call me Yabby You. A so me get the name. An' the name stick on, more than the name thatís on me birth certificate."
'Conquering Lion' was recorded in Kingston, Jamaica at Harry J's Recording Studio, Dynamic Sounds Studios, and Channel One Recording Studio, produced by Yabby You, and mixed by King Tubby and features Yabby You on vocals and congos; Leroy Wallace (Horse Head) on drums; Tommy McCook on flute; Earl "Chinna" Smith on guitar; Family Man on bass; Aston Barrett on organ; Bingy Bunny on percussion; Augustus Pablo and Pablo Black on piano; Dirty Harry on saxophone; Don D. Junior on trombone; and Bobby Ellis on trumpet.
arranged, produced, and written by Vivian Jackson (Yabby You)
1 Run Come Rally 3:16
2 Jah Vengeance 2:48
3 Conquering Lion 3:25
4 Covetous Men 2:56
5 Anti-Christ 2:39
6 Carnal Mind 3:04
7 Warn the Nation 2:25
8 Love Thy Neighbor 3:35
9 Love of Jah 3:03
10 The Man Who Does the Work 2:42