TOOTS AND THE MAYTALS
‘UNPLUGGED ON STRAWBERRY HILL’ / ‘REGGAE GOT SOUL’
RELEASE DATE: 6TH AUGUST 2012
Living reggae ambassadors Toots & the Maytals unveil their first ever acoustic album this summer through Metropolis, to coincide with the 50th anniversary of The Jamaican Independence Day.
Grammy award-winning Toots Hibbert was the first to use the word reggae on tape in his 1968 classic, ’do the raggay’, and over the last six decades has defined and redefined the sound. Now with his latest offering ‘Unplugged on Strawberry Hill’ the legend continues.
This is the first ever recorded acoustic set by Toots & the Maytals, recorded overlooking Kingston at the iconic Chris Blackwell property, while the afternoon sun’s golden rays washed over the set with the Blue Mountains a poetic backdrop. The album includes a bonus DVD documentary (‘Reggae Got Soul’), containing rare live footage from Toots’ unforgettable performance at Rockpalast in 1981 and unique liner notes contributed by Grace Jones.
The album, a gorgeous, sun kissed acoustic session, depicts an intimate and soulful side to the revered classics like ‘Funky Kingston’ and ‘54-46’. Toots’ iconic bruising vocal is smooth and saunters over laissez-faire rhythms that sound like they are recorded at sunset – ‘Unplugged on Strawberry Hill’ is the perfect summer album for lazing around waiting for bands to start at a festival or kicking back at a barbecue.
Toots & the Maytals, record holders for most number one singles in Jamaica, have been concocting and performing their brand of firecracker reggae/ska since 1961, with tracks like ‘Pressure Drop’ and ‘Monkey Man’ firmly cemented as rock & pop standards, the former being covered by everyone from The Clash to Robert Palmer, the latter covered most movingly by the late legend herself, Amy Winehouse.
Today, more than 40 years into their career, the band show no signs of slowing down – since their last reformation in 1995, the band have toured extensively, selling out stadiums all over the USA, Europe, and Jamaica.
“Toots’ voice is one of the great musical gifts of our time” – Anthony De Curtis, New York Times & Rolling Stone
“When he starts to sing, the place lights up”— Jimmy Cliff, Singer & Songwriter
UK tour dates:
2nd August The Empire, Middlesbrough Thursday
3rd August: Indigo2, Jamaica50 Concert theo2.co.uk/indigo2/event/jamaica-50-20120726.html
8th August: Special Live at 100Club
10th August O2 ABC Glasgow (ABC1 & ABC2), Glasgow
15th August 2012 O2 Academy Oxford, Oxford
12th August: Holmfirth Picturedrome
19th August: Beacons Festival