May 31, 2011, at 1:53 pm

Merritone at last!

MerritoneThey’ve been a long time in coming but the Japanese label Dubstore are about to drop the first instalment of their hopefully extensive Merritone rocksteady 7″ reissue program. The five singles, scheduled for release on the 6 June, are:

As I’ve discussed before Dubstore singles are not cheap (though they are excellent quality) and your likely to pay upwards of £10 each for these. Given that it’s going to be a rich man who can buy them all as the full schedule is rumoured to be for 40 singles! If you or on a budget then DanceCrasher recommends the Zodiacs as the must buy and Lynn Taitt with Batman/The Joker just shading the two Renegades releases, now if the Renegades sides had been back to back then they would have been even more essential…

After this initial batch other releases are expected to include:

Roland Alphonso – How Soon/?
Henry Buckley – Beware Of All Those Rude Boys/If I Am Right
Tomorrows Children – Bang Bang Rocksteady/Rain
Black Brothers – Born To Rule/?
Don Henry – As Long As I Live/
Joe Higgs – You Hurt My Soul/Lyn Taitt & The Jets – Why Am I Treated So Bad
Hopeton Lewis – Let Me Come On Home/Hardships Of Life
Gaylettes – Silent River Runs Deep/I Like Your World
Tartans – It’s Real/It’s Not Right
Paragons – We Were Meant To Be/?
Untouchables – I Do Love You/Mackie Mackie
Roland Alphonso – Stanger From Durango/Sound Of Silence
Termites – We’re Gonna Make It/Ethiopians – I’m Gonna Be Free
Hopeton Lewis – This Music Got Soul/Rocksteady

16 comments to Merritone at last!

  • betterdub

    on the recordsleeves on the Dubstore-homepage you can see the program of twenty Merritone-singles.
    Anybody with secure information if there will be another twenty?

  • betterdub

    Thanks Tim, I’m too fast a reader it seems!

  • Prince Andrew

    Well the Batman release is a bit confusing as I thought it was a Randy’s tune. Been out of a 10 inch back in the mid 90’s on a Randy’s label. I first hear Bob Brooks play this tune at a selecter’s clash almost 19 years ago and it flattened the dance big time before Asher G ripped it off the turn table for some reason.

    I was led to believe there were only three copies in existence or that might be some myth to add mystery to the tune.

  • MoW

    There is definetly more than 3 copies and it’s 100% certain (confirmed by Keith Scott and Sam Mitchell plus I’ve seen the original label) that it’s a Merritone tune.

  • Prince Andrew

    Thanks for that MoW, perhaps Randy’s Group were that band that recorded it for the Merritone label. Great side.

  • Tim P

    I don’t think there was a connection Prince Andrew, the 10″ Randy’s issue was unauthorised.

  • Prince Andrew

    Thanks Tim P, that’s interesting. You learn a bit more all the time.

    What does interest me is that for an up town sound and label Merritone could put out some pretty tough sides.

  • Tim P

    From what I know there was no direct connection between the sound system and the label. The label took the name from the sound because it sounded good and it was probably a mutually beneficial arrangement. Val Blake started the sound, which was then taken over by his sons. Ken Khouri who owned Federal started the label and was the money man production wise the real work was done by Keith Scott and Sam Mitchell.

  • Alias

    What happened to compilation CDs? I’d rather get a CD (or two) for £10 (each) rather than paying £10 for each single.

  • MoW

    I wrote an article about Merritone for Big Shot #6 and I think I found some loose connection between the sound and the label, but embarassingly, I neither remember nor do I have a magazine with me at the moment. Will have to check!

  • According to Paul Khouri, the name was rented from the Blake family.
    BTW, On test pressings, How Soon is paired with an add’l take titled part 2, Born to Rule is paired with Sai Pan and We Were Meant To Be has acapella version on flip.
    Big Shot 6 Merritone piece appears well done, although still awaiting translation of last 2 pages by a Dutch friend! Would you have it in English?

  • MoW

    I’m sorry, I don’t have it in English. Of course I would’ve translated it as well, but I don’t have access to the piece at the moment. Sorry!

  • I used the tracks from the Zodiacs, that i discovered here thanks Tim, in a special rocksteady mix… Sugar !

  • Al

    Born To Rule & Sai Pan were originally flip sides so that one is correct.

  • betterdub

    and who was part of the Merritone players, besides Lyn Taitt?

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