Friday, February 13, 2015

40 Year Itch: Rise of Jamaica's Greatest Deejay

Jerry Hall in Jamaica, 1975. Norman Parkinson for Vogue.

     Beginning in February of 1975, the versatile "I Roy" Roy Reid charted 13 straight singles in the Jamaican Hit Parade. Predating American rappers by years, Jamaican deejays were talk over artists, shouting, rhyming, and entertaining dance halls over what were  mostly well known instrumental tracks, and I Roy was considered among the very best. Among his string of 1975 hits was a highly sexual tune called "Welding". No, the young gal isn't knocking on his door to get I Roy to join metals together. Consider the shape of the welding torch and you'll be on the right track.

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