Lee "Scratch" Perry

Lee " Scratch" Perry (actually Rainford Hugh Perry ) ( born March 20, 1936 in Kendal, Jamaica) is a Jamaican record producer and one of the most influential figures in the development of reggae, ska, and especially the Dub in Jamaica. He became known primarily for his eccentric nature and by his most daring of dealing with effects and mixer. Lloyd Bradley wrote of him: " Lee" Scratch " Perry is the Salvador Dali of Dub. "


Lee Perry is the son of a farm worker and a road worker. At 15 he left school and earned his livelihood with domino game, as a dancer and as a laborer in Negril and Westmoreland, until he went with the goal of working in the music industry, to Kingston in 1959. Here he began as a talent scout in the studio by Clement " Coxsone " Dodd. Among other things, he brought there, especially the Maytals and wrote songs for Delroy Wilson. He also produced himself, including the song " Chicken Scratch", which gave him his nickname.

In 1967, Perry worked with producers such as Prince Buster and also Clancy Eccles and began a collaboration with Joe Gibbs. Here he recorded his first Upsetter productions. Working with Gibbs made ​​increasingly discord, and Perry realized that he had to go his own way. In 1968 he founded the label Upsetter Records. With the studio were Lynford ' Andy Capp ' Anderson, whose cousin Barry Lambert and an intern - the Upsetters. The first production "Place In The Sun" just covered the cost, but the second recording "People Funny Boy" was already a success. The reggae rhythm was accelerated, and enriched with African rhythms. The whole followed organ sounds that were borrowed from contemporary spaghetti westerns and spy movies.

The success of the single caused a great stir among the musicians of Kingston, and many sought from then on Perry to work with him. Among them, Aston " Family Man " Barrett, whom he brought together with the Wailers after Bob Marley had just returned from a trip to the USA. With the Wailers Perry produced the title "My Cup ," " Duppy Conqueror ," " Keep On Moving ", " Mr. Brown " and "Small Axe " and the album Soul Revolution II in 1972, the cooperation, Bob Marley ended remained However, in contact with Perry. Later, Marley recorded songs from the period with Lee Perry again, so, for example, originated in 1978 " Kaya " and " Sun Is Shining". It was with Dave Barker, Carl Dawkins and the Silvertones and especially Junior Byles, with whom he achieved great success, added singles. The so-called ex- Perry - End have been increasingly daring, first experiments with the compilation of Deejays have been made, which Perry his time was far ahead. Many creative adventure and friendship with King Tubby took their course.

Perry disliked more and more to rely on his productions to other recording studios, so he built from the year 1973 his famous Black Ark Studio. It was in Kingston district Washington Gardens, in the courtyard of his house in Cardiff Crescent, where he lived with his then wife Pauline 'Isha' Morrison and their three children. Until 1974, Perry had 12,000 Jamaican pound invested in a visually more discreet studio equipment whose true value according to eyewitness statements was just listening. It consisted of a Teac four-track recorder, a Soundcraft console with Exoplex - distortion pedals and a range of smaller devices. The sound was different in all respects radically from all others of his time. Perry claimed that he himself actually receiving only four tracks, " twenty more I received from the alien force (...)" - "It was only four tracks written on the machine, but I was picking up twenty from the extraterrestral squad (...) ".

The Black Ark studio became a creative center of the local music scene, where almost all known musicians of Jamaica were often encountered. In 1974 he produced with Leo Graham the hit " Black Candle " and in 1975 with the Mighty Diamonds, the ballad " Talk about it". Bunny Rugg (also known as Bunny Scott / Clarke) by Third World realized in the Ark several solo recordings. Perry mixed vocals of U- Roy, I- Roy, Prince Jazzbo Dillinger or with trumpet solos by Vin Gordon and Melodicaklängen of Augustus Pablo. He constantly distilled new sounds from his constantly growing body of recordings. For every spontaneous idea he had mostly been a fitting soundtrack to the hand; he succeeded supposedly, along with Max Romeo songs like "Disco Devil" ( which was later utilized by The Prodigy in Breakbeat "Out of Space" ) included in only twenty minutes.

From 1976 to 1978 Iceland - Records published internationally various Perry Album: Colombia Colly with Jah Lion Inna Babylon or War with Max Romeo and the Upsetters. 1976 Albums Party Time taken by the Heptones and Super Ape by The Upsetters in the Black Ark. In the same year succeeded Junior Murvins Hit Police and Thieves. Perry began albums under a vast variety of names and labels to produce. Thanks to its modular recordings he could Dubs publish with altered vocal or instrumental tracks, and its material use in so many ways and sell locally on their own account. This led to an early rift with Iceland - Records. Perry, however, later complained in interviews and on his opinion, lack of payment and the fact that he felt exploited by Iceland - Records.

The situation in the Black Ark studio was more tense as the Upsetters - production " City Too Hot " implies in its text. 1979 was the studio up in flames. Lee Perry was on suspicion of arson for three days in detention, ultimately the actual causes were never solved.

Perry went first to the U.S. and worked with reggae bands Terrorists and Majestics. In 1983 his collaboration with Mad Professor and Adrian Sherwood. It was a collaboration with Lloyd " Bullwackie " Barnes from New Jersey and Perry realized with Coxsone Dodd different Rekompilationen earlier productions. In 1989 he married in Switzerland, the musician Ms. Mireille Campbell in a Krishna ceremony, the couple has two children. They now live in Einsiedeln in Switzerland and in the village he is a "crazy bird of paradise" who likes to decorate his fancy clothes with CDs.

In 2003, he won with his album Jamaican ET Grammy for Best Reggae Album.

In 2011 he released the album " Rise Again " on which he could gather many musical greats: Sun, had, among other things Bill Laswell and his wife Ejigayehu " GiGi " Shibabaw and Sly Dunbar, Bernie Worrell and Aiyb Dieng at the MOD Technologies published work with.

Lee Perry's creativity is undiminished to this day. Every year he produces at least an album and still occurs regularly. His vocal contributions are often improvises freely and reflect Perry's innate sense of humor and his joy of creation.

Through his work many later artists were inspired by Yello about the Red Hot Chili Peppers to The Prodigy. " Revolution Dub" from 1975 was included in the legendary list Wire The Wire 's " 100 Records That Set The World On Fire (While No One Was Listening ) ".

In 2013 he was awarded the Musgrave Medal of the Institute of Jamaica for his services.

Discography ( incomplete)

  • Cutting Razor Rare Cuts From The Black Ark
  • Presenting Dub
  • Guitar Boogie Dub ( bogus, it is the album " Carl Harvey meets the Dub Masters Bunny Lee & Prince Jammy - Ecstasy of Mankind" )
  • Newsflash
  • In Dub Confrontation with King Tubby
  • Happy Birthday