Time Unlimited still around

Monday, June 29, 2015

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FOR his 1983 song, Johnny Drughead, emerging dub poet Mutabaruka teamed with journeyman harmony group Time Unlimited on what became an underground classic.


At the time, the group comprised founding member Orville Smith, Hugo Blackwood and Donavan Joseph. They are enjoying renewed interest, after 40 years since being formed in Duhaney Park, Kingston.


Love Made Us is the title of a recently released compilation album featuring songs from Time Unlimited's early years with original members Hugh Marshall, Junior Delgado and Gosford Manning.


"There's a lotta interest in the group right now from places like Japan, so the time is right for a showcase like this," Smith said.


That showcase has the song Give Love, with lead vocals by Delgado who died in 2005. There is also a cover of The Spinners' I'll be Around, done by the current lineup of Smith, Marshall and Nigel Blake.


Time Unlimited was launched in 1973 when roots-reggae was emerging from Kingston's ghettos. Initially, they recorded songs like 23rd Psalm, Run Baldhead and Repatriation for Lee 'Scratch' Perry.


These were followed by songs like Living Inna Jamaica for Sly and Robbie and Win My Love produced by Joe Gibbs. Their only album, the Dean Henry-produced Devil's Angel, was released in 1983.


Smith blames 'arrogance and bad management' for stalling Time Unlimited's progress. Though the group has not recorded regularly in the last 20 years, he insists it never split up.


"Wi always been aroun', people always want the songs inna Europe an' Japan. Once there is life, there is Time Unlimited," he said.




-- Howard Campbell


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