A lovers rock classic turns 40Wednesday, October 06, 2021
BY HOWARD CAMPBELL
Trojan/BMG Records are celebrating the 40th anniversary of singer Carroll Thompson's Hopelessly in Love , by re-issuing the groundbreaking album on colour vinyl and compact disc with additional songs.
The album, considered the definitive lovers rock collection, was first released in 1981. It was mainly produced by Jamaican Hilbert "Berty" Grant with Anthony "Chips" Richards as executive producer.
Thompson will mark the milestone with 11 shows in which she performs the 10 songs from Hopelessly in Love. The first date is scheduled for October 19 in Nottingham and the closing gig on November 7 in London.
The other shows will be in Manchester, Leeds, Leicester, Cardiff, Birmingham, Liverpool, London, Bristol, and Horsham.
Thompson was born in Hertfordshire, south England in 1960 to Jamaican parents. Her career started as a pop artiste in the late 1970s with Hansa, a German record company.
Grant introduced her to Leonard “Santic” Chin, another Jamaican producer based in the UK. Chin produced the Thompson-penned I'm So Sorry and Simply in Love, which entered the UK reggae and national charts in 1981.
Both songs are on Hopelessly in Love.
Grant next took Thompson to Richards, a former Trojan Records marketing man who helped push Ken Boothe's Everything I Own to number one in the UK in 1974.
Their expertise helped make Hopelessly in Love a hit and put the mellow sound of lovers rock on the British music map. It set the pace for similar acts including Maxi Priest, Vivian Jones and Janet Kay.
Though most British lovers rock acts were not as globally successful as their roots counterparts like Aswad and Steel Pulse, Thompson said it still has a devoted following.
“I believe it's that's special blend of reggae — drums, bass and rhythm, then sweet musical arrangements, soulful vocals with melodic songs, and romantic lyrics,” she told the Jamaica Observer in 2018.