Lizzy & Nicky Thomas - Musical Excursion

A: The Inspirations – Take a message to my girl

B: Lizzy & Nicky Thomas – Musical Excursion


A musical excursion by Jammy’s soundsystem dj Lizzy and prolific Gibbs recording artist Nicky Thomas. Here they ride the classic “Rainy night in Georgia” song which was penned by swamp rocker Tony Joe White and sung high into the charts by Brook Benton in 1970. The latter was already a veteran at the time and made his comeback with this particular song. Although it isn’t the first Brook Benton track that got a reggae make-over, I think it’s safe to say that it is the most revisited one – by far.

I’m not sure if the vocal cut by Nicky Thomas ever came out on 7inch (it probably did, but I’ve never come across one), but it is featured on his album “Love of the common people” (Trojan / Jogib). Both album versions feature the song with violin overdubs, but the non-violin version can be found on later reissues on Trojan as well. The version Lizzy is toasting over is the one without strings, which I prefer, and it is actually his effort that makes this track worthwhile. For me, anyway.

I’ve always been a fan of the combination style (dj – singer), and this is a perfect example why. As much as I like Tony Joe White, I always thought “Rainy night” was a bit of a corny tune and I don’t think I would’ve bought this 7inch if it was a straight up Nicky Thomas version. But, when you take everything out except for the chorus and leave it up to a topnotch soundsystem dj to do his thing over the freed up space, it works like a charm. ‘Musical Excursion’ is floating around on a blank Jogib disc as well, but it makes sense to me it was eventually released properly. After all, in this form the song is both raw, melodic, corny, boasting and sweet at the same time. Indeed, it became a song in its own right. And a tasty one at that..


Label: Jogib (Ja)
Release date: 1970
Matrix: DYNA J.G 2299-1
Riddim: Rainy night in Georgia

(originally posted on 20-02-12)


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