The Congos: “Back in the Black Ark”

Posted in Dancing about architecture on February 4th, 2011 by bill

In 1977 the Congos released Heart of the Congos, produced by Lee “Scratch” Perry at his Black Ark studio in Kingston, which is generally considered one of the top 5 or 10 reggae albums of all time. Perry, at the height of his considerable powers at that time, created a swirling, throbbing backdrop atop which the vocals of Cedric Myton, Roydel Johnson, and Watty Burnett soared into the stratosphere.

But that was long ago. The golden age of roots reggae came to a close at the dawn of the 80s, coinciding roughly with the death of Bob Marley and the destruction of the Black Ark, never to return again in this world, I’m afraid. Many of the players live on – both Perry and the Congos have continued to tour and make records – but they are like small ships adrift in a vast sea.
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