The harmony trio Mystic I, aka the Mystic Eyes, was formed at a Rasta camp in western Kingston, with Anthony Johnson, Les Clark, and Balvin Fials. Since Johnson’s cousin knew the innovative producer Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, the group began recording at the Black Ark in 1978, yielding ‘Forward With Jah Orthodox,’ ‘Forward With Love,’ and ‘Elaine.’ Then Linval Thompson began working with the group, cutting enough material for the Mysterious album, which was issued in England. When Johnson left the group in 1979, he come some other highly compelling singles for Thompson, including ‘Hey Mr Richman,’ which surfaced on a Strong Like Sampson in 1980, and which pointed to the nebulous nature of wealth. Similarly, Bunny Lie Lie’s ‘Don’t You Try’ dates from early in the Spanish Townian singer’s career, having been voiced at King Tubby’s studio in 1979 on another top-notch Thompson rhythm laid at Channel One, its final mix-down courtesy of Scientist.
David Katz ©
LABEL: IROKO RECORDS