The Gladiators back in arena

BY SIMONE MORGAN Observer staff reporter

Sunday, June 16, 2013

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THE Gladiators, one of the top touring reggae bands of the last decade, is teaming up with deejay Droop Lion for their first album in three years.

The Gladiators Featuring Droop Lion is the title of the 12-track set which is co-produced by Clive Hunt, Jeffery Stephenson and Michelle Jovanovic.

According to the group's drummer Anthony Griffiths, the album is different from previous efforts.

"The fans will see Droop Lion doing renditions of some of The Gladiators' most popular tracks," he told the Sunday Observer.

Among those songs are the 1968 hit Hello Carol, Naturally, Bongo Red and Roots Natty.

No official release date has been set but Griffiths says The Gladiators Featuring Droop Lion will be launched late this year.

"We are taking our time on this one as we want it to be perfect. Every note and beat has to be correct," said Griffiths, adding: "Our aim is to establish the group locally."

He pointed out that Droop Lion is no stranger to The Gladiators. His uncle, David Webber, was an original member.

During a break from recording at the Mixing Lab Studio in St Andrew, Droop Lion said the project was a major step for him.

"We need to continue the great legacy that was left for us. These are some of the stalwarts that paved the way for artistes like myself."

Anthony Griffiths and his brother (lead singer) Al Griffiths are second- generation members of The Gladiators. Their father, singer/guitarist Albert Griffiths, started the band almost 50 years ago.

Gallimore Sutherland, Clinton Rufus, Vernon Sutherland, Glen Williams and Mark Gooden are also members of the current unit.

For the last 15 years, The Gladiators has been among the top reggae acts on the road, consistently touring Europe, North and South America and Asia.

Albert Griffiths retired from touring five years ago due to ill health.

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