The Uniques

Pressure Sounds * PS69 * 2010

Absolutely Rock Steady

Absolutely Rock Steady

CD Tracks

  • Give Me A Love
  • You Lied To Me
  • Let’s Get Together
  • Stand Up And Fight Listen
  • People Rock Steady
  • Facts Of Life
  • This Feeling Listen
  • Trying Hard To Find A Home
  • Blinded By Love
  • You Don’t Care (You’ll Want Me Back)
  • I’m Lost
  • Love & Devotion
  • Let Me Go Girl
  • I’ll Let You Go (Let Me Go Boy) – Dawn Penn
  • Where Do I Turn
  • Have Pity On Me
  • Build My World
  • The Beatitude (Version Two)

LP Tracks

  • Give Me A Love
  • You Lied To Me
  • Stand Up And Fight Listen
  • People Rock Steady
  • Facts Of Life
  • This Feeling Listen
  • Trying Hard To Find A Home
  • You Don’t Care (You’ll Want Me Back)
  • I’m Lost
  • Love & Devotion
  • Let Me Go Girl
  • I’ll Let You Go (Let Me Go Boy) – Dawn Penn
  • Where Do I Turn
  • Build My World

Information

Single CD
Single Vinyl

The Uniques, featuring Slim Smith, were one of the most popular and enduring vocal harmony groups of the rock steady era. Keith 'Slim' Smith grew up in the West Street area of Kingston and had sang with Winston Riley in The Techniques before leaving to set up The Uniques.

“Before The Wailers hit the most popular group was The Techniques with Slim Smith…” Clement ‘Coxsone’ Dodd

“At The Carib Theatre, The State Theatre, The Regal Theatre and the Music Union we stole the show from any other group performing and, on one memorable occasion, from The Wailers where Bob Marley threatened Slim Smith…” Jimmy Riley

During this period Slim developed a close working relationship with producer Bunny 'Striker' Lee although, in typical Kingston fashion, he still recorded for other producers including 'Coxsone Dodd' at Studio One.

“After a few years Slim left The Uniques and went solo and the hits continued ‘Everybody Needs Love’, ‘Blinded By Love’, and he was off on tour of Canada. He appeared in places like Denmark, France, Germany, Sweden, Wales and all over London. In London he was regarded as the best Jamaican singer and was hailed wherever he appeared.” Tony Mack

“I was in New York when I heard about the tragedy and I did not believe it at first… only when I heard it from several sources did I believe it. Slim had returned home to his parents' house after smoking ganja with some friends and could not get into the house. He broke a window to get in and badly cut his arm. His injuries were so severe that he bled to death before he could get treatment…” Jimmy Riley

This 'Absolutely Rock Steady' set is a mixture of some of the groups' more popular hits and less well known recordings. A fine compilation, showcasing one of Jamaica's greatest ever singers, it is an essential addition to any record collection.

“Slim is an incomparable singer even though he’s been dead thirty odd, coming on for forty years. Slim was the nearest thing to Curtis Mayfield and he could also play instruments… look how long Slim Smith dead and you hear his music still. Do you know of another singer who’s come up like Slim Smith? You’ve never had another singer who’s made that impact on Jamaican music like Slim Smith.” Bunny ‘Striker’ Lee

Reviews

  • Jah Joe  - Dreadlocks songJah Joe Dreadlocks song

    Deep mystical Wackie's production from Jah Joe (aka Joe Axumite) in chanting deejay mode, one of the best 45's on Aires

    7"
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  • The Mighty Abidjans - Don't Change the SystemThe Mighty AbidjansDon't Change the System

    Second cut on the rhythm first used for "Untamed", much much of a straight mix employed here, with a pure drum & bass dub version

    7"
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  • The Fashioneers  - Give a helping handThe Fashioneers Give a helping hand

    Quality roots.

    7"
    More info
  • Elijah  - Selassi hiElijah Selassi hi

    The mysterious Elijah cut this mellow and heartfelt 2-part single for Sir Collins, then apparently disappeared from the recording scene. But the tune made quite a mark in New York, where it was released on the very rare Bronx-based WARICKA label, enough to have been covered a few years later by KC White (we also reissued his cut, still available, see here!) The tune is also remembered fondly as a New York sound system favorite in the 1970s by those active back then. It was also released on the Ackee label in the UK, memorable roots reggae for sure.

    7"
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  • The Invaders - Story of LoveThe InvadersStory of Love

    Another Invaders 45, "Story of Love" backed with its deejay version, "Holy Mountain." Another tune only released on a blank label originally, and thus the identity of the artists has long been speculated, but the mastertape revealed the mysterious Invaders again! "Story of Love" is an excellent early '70s tune, with great harmonies and organ, the flipside "Holy Mountain" being a deejay version on the same rhythm, with the vocalist chatting thanks and praises in Amharic, roots indeed.

    7"
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  • Delroy Wilson  - Give me your loveDelroy Wilson Give me your love

    The mighty Delroy Wilson, one of Jamaica's biggest artists. "Give Me Your Love" was released on a Delroy LP again on the WARICKA label, which was mostly sold as a blank label pre-release with no cover, although copies with labels and/or a silk-screened cover also exist. This is a phenomenal cut on the mournful and heavy 'Artibella' rhythm, with a killer organ sound that we just love. This tune is backed by a dub cut with horns and bongos, lifted from an extremely rare blank-label Sir Collins compilation LP.

    7"
    More info

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