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 Post subject: Desmond Dekker
PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 1:22 pm 
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There's a ton of compilations out there, and I haven't heard all of them. There's one recent Trojan comp called "You Can Make It If You Really Want: The Definitive Collection" and it sounds all right, but I wanted to point out two bits of trivial information.

First, I mentioned awhile back that "007 (Shanty Town)" is best heard on the original CD issue of "The Harder They Come" because on the remaster (and apparently the original LP releases, which I've never heard), they use a crappy sounding mix/dub/version/? with terrible flanging problems. "The Definitive Collection" apparently uses the same or similar source - flange galore. Maybe the original 45 (or at least the British 45) had the same issues? If you want something more hi-fi, seek the old "The Harder They Come" CD, the vocals will sound sooo much better.

Second, I mentioned Gavin Lurssen doing "The Reggae Box"...I compared his mastering of "Israelites" with the one on "Definitive Collection." No contest, Lurssen's is MUCH better. Again, he may have remixed it, because Dekker's vocals are so much clearer without any of the nasty byproducts of excessive EQ, compression, dubbing, etc. It's probably a different mix: on Lurssen's version, Dekker's vocals are upfront in the beginning, not buried way down low as on "Definitive Collection," but as the song hits its groove, the vocals sink back down - on "The Definitive Collection," they actually move UP in the mix and are more upfront compared to Lurssen's version.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 2:03 pm 
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Ever hear the Rhino Dekker comp? Would be interested to hear your thoughts.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 2:11 pm 
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No, not yet. Apparently it's OOP, but not pricey used.

Not ideal, but I have these two tracks on my iPod in AAC format:

"007 (shanty town)" - original 'The Harder They Come' CD
http://s45.yousendit.com/d.aspx?id=2WHB ... GRW7GDI1S9

"israelites" - 'Reggae Box' CD
http://s45.yousendit.com/d.aspx?id=0RKC ... D2HBRDENT8

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 4:34 pm 
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I have the Rhino comp and it's OK, but nothing special. It doesn't sound like they were given really good tapes. There's an Island Records 4-disc box set that I checked out from a local library a few years ago and the version of "The Israelites" on there sounded fantastic, miles ahead of the Rhino version.

I'd be interested in hearing the Trojan comp.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 4:54 pm 
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That Island box set may have been "The Reggae Box" I was talking about.

There's another box set called "Tougher Than Tough: The Story of Jamaican Music," which came out in 1992 or 1993 - on paper, it's a strong tracklisting with a greater emphasis on pre-dancehall music (not surprising because "The Reggae Box" dedicates a fourth disc that covers music that goes beyond "Tougher Than Tough"'s last track). I haven't heard it, so I can't comment on the sound. Tons of accolades though.

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