Big Mountain returns with Perfect Summer

Thursday, May 26, 2016

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — It seems hard to believe that 22 years ago Big Mountain scored a massive hit with their reggae cover of Peter Frampton’s Baby I Love Your Way. Even harder to fathom, its been 10 years since the southern California band released an album.
Big Mountain returns to the market tomorrow with the release of Perfect Summer, their first album since 2002’s New Day. It is distributed by VPAL, the distribution affiliate of VP Records.
A cover of The Beatles’ Here comes the Sun is the first single from the album.
Joaquin ‘Quino’ McWhinney, the band’s charismatic lead singer, said though Big Mountain took a break from recording, they continued to do spot dates in the Pacific region, traditionally their strongest market. He used the break to tend to academic and domestic matters.
“I finished a degree, worked as a teacher and spent time raising a family. But I was always writing songs and even released a Spanish reggae album,” he told the OBSERVER ONLINE.
Perfect Summer is Big Mountain’s first album to be distributed by an independent company. Unity, the album that spawned Baby I Love Your Way, was distributed by Giant Records, which had a distribution and marketing deal with Warner Bros.
Giant distributed three of the group’s 10 albums. New Day was released by Pony Canyon, a major Japanese company.
For McWhinney, ‘indie’ promotion is a blessing.
“We didn’t have to deal with the pressures of the past and that’s very important. Everybody wanted another Baby I Love Your Way and we wanted more than that,” he said.
Baby I Love Your Way went to number six on the Billboard pop chart and was one of 1994’s biggest hits. Their follow-up song, Sweet Sensual Love, was a minor hit in the United States and United Kingdom.
Big Mountain has gone through several personnel changes since then. McWhinney’s brother James is no longer with the band which includes two Jamaicans: drummer Paul Kastick and keyboardist Richard Campbell.
To promote Perfect Summer, Big Mountain is scheduled to perform in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. Starting June 10, they will tour Europe, playing a number of that continent’s reggae festivals including Rototom Sunsplash in Benicassim, Spain.
Howard Campbell

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