ANDY CAPP – MUSICAL RECIPE

Andy Capp - Musical Recipe

A: Andy Capp (& The Pepperlites) – Musical Recipe

B: Joe Gibbs Allstars – Musical version

 

Probably best known for his 1968 smash hit ‘Pop a top’, and the many versions released right thereafter, Andy Capp is an interesting character in the reggae scene. His name could refer to the popular Daily Mirror cartoon, which reached international fame after it was first printed in 1957, or it could refer to a handicapped person (‘andicap), but it definitely doesn’t refer to a person with the name Andy Capp. Simply because he doesn’t exist. Well, not really anyway…

Andy Capp is the pseudonym of the multi-talented engineer Lynford Anderson. He mixed and engineered a whole heap of tunes through the years, but never quite reached the fame as colleagues such as Errol Thompson or Sylvan Morris. Don’t ask me why, because his roster includes most Leslie Kong hits and misses, the backingtrack of Roberta Flack’s ‘Killing me Softly’, early Lee Perry tunes, Clancy Eccles material and probably a whole bunch of other tunes I don’t know about. (You can find a lot of references in the excellent Reggae Rough Guide, by Steve Barrow & Pete Dalton, without whom I wouldn’t have known about this.)  Lynford also set up the “Upset” record label (with Lee Perry) on which he released a fine selection of tunes, including a huge fave of mine called ‘Baldheaded Teacher’ by Trevour Lambert (a.k.a Max Romeo.)

As said, the ‘Pop a Top’ hit spawned many versions, including ones by Andy Capp himself. The release featured here could be seen as one of them because it’s not that different in what it has to offer. Although I would say it’s funkier and bit rawer. And it’s definitely more scarce, since this never got past the pre-release state, to my knowledge at least. Musical Recipe is not really rare, there are a fair few copies floating around, but you will have to dig and be patient to get our hands on a copy. It’s worth it, though.

The riddim Andy Capp is doing his thing to is a stripped down version of Stranger and Gladdy’s ‘Just like a river‘, which was one the earliest hits for Joe Gibbs. The Gibbs riddim is based on a track by the Tennors called I’ve got to get you of my mind (recorded at and released by Studio One) but it was the vocal melodies of ‘Just like a river’ that proved to be immortal. Numerous versions followed, including an odd one by Bunny Lee featuring, there he is again, Stranger Cole. His 1968 collaboration with Tommy McCook on ‘Last flight to reggae city‘ (Carifta) could be the version Andy Capp is answering to. The beginning of both versions are almost identical, but where Stranger takes it to the skies, Andy takes it to the dancefoor. Which makes it an ideal dancehall dubplate. Which might just be why it never got a proper release. After all, and once again, it’s not that different and I can see why dancehall dwellers in 1968 and 1969 eventually got fed up with this sound. But I thank the Lord Almighty for the good quality pre-release versions that are still available out there, because it’s a whole different ballgame in 2011. I like ‘Pop a top’ but rarely play it out, whereas this track has been doing its rounds for weeks on end now. Simply because I had never heard it before, was immediately taken away by this funky take on “Like a river’ and, I’ll admit it, the scarceness. This is a back to the future dubplate…

*************
Label: Jogibs pre-release (Ja)
Release date: 1969
Matrix: DYNA–JG-1681
Riddim: The Tennors – I’ve got to get you of my mind / Just like a river

(originally posted on 18-06-11)

*************

1 Comment on ANDY CAPP – MUSICAL RECIPE

  • pressurebeat says:
    9 November 2014 at 21:27

    COMMENTS FROM THE OLD SITE

    2 comments:

    the_voice_of_reason said…

    A minor point; The Tennors “Cleopatra” on the Tennors Label, which was the same cut as “I’ve Got To Get You Off My Mind”, credits Tommy McCook and the Supersonics as backing musicians. The original pre came out on Olive Blossom, and had a WIRL matrix, at a time when Coxsone was still cutting discs at Federal, so my suspicion is that it was a Treasure Isle production, rather than Studio One.

    9/19/2011

    Pressure Beat said…

    That makes sense indeed. Forgot there was another cut of this track. Thanks!

    9/19/2011

    Reply

Leave a reply

Fields marked with * are required