"The Outlaw" JOSEY WALES caught up with the hosts of REALITY TIME backstage at the 2014 Sierra Nevada Music and Wine Festival for an exclusive interview and LIVE perfomance. Watch the video below!
About JOSEY WALES:
Josey Wales was one of dancehall's founding fathers, building on the innovative DJ chatting of his mentor U-Roy and creating a highly influential style of his own. Along with Brigadier Jerry and his sound-system partner Charlie Chaplin,Wales was widely regarded as one of the best DJs in Jamaica when dancehall took over the reggae scene in the early '80s. His gruff, gravelly voice and half-spoken, half-sung delivery were instantly recognizable, and were copied by many an up-and-coming DJ. Unlike his contemporary Yellowman – perhaps the only DJ of the era who was more popular –Wales pointedly refused to resort to slackness, keeping his lyrics purely conscious and Rastafarian. That meant he grew increasingly unfashionable over the course of the '80s, but he nonetheless continued to perform regularly, and remained a highly respected pioneer.
Josey Wales was born Joseph Winston Sterling in West Kingston, Jamaica, and took his stage name from the Clint Eastwood Western The Outlaw Josey Wales; naturally, "The Outlaw" became a standard nickname for him, along with "The Colonel." Wales first performed professionally as a DJ with the Roots Unlimited Sound System in 1977, and made his name as part of U-Roy's King SturGav Hi-Fi Sound System, where he spent three and a half years in the early '80s. There he teamed with DJ sparring partner Charlie Chaplin in one of the most potent one-two punches of the era, which in turn made King SturGav arguably the biggest sound system around. Wales' first recordings were live performances issued on producer Bunny Roots' label, but he didn't enter the studio until he hooked up with the foremost producer in early dancehall, Henry "Junjo" Lawes. Wales began moonlighting for Lawes' Volcano sound system, and in 1983, he issued his first-ever single on the Volcano label, "Baby Come Home."
"Baby Come Home" wasn't a big hit, but its follow-up, "Let Go Mi Hand," was a breakthrough smash that established Wales as a recording star, not just an electrifying live performer. His debut album, The Outlaw Josey Wales, appeared later in 1983, and it cemented his status as one of Jamaica's top DJs, behind only Yellowman at his peak. Further hits followed, including "Bobo Dread" (which appeared on a shared album with Yellowman, 1984'sTwo Giants Clash) and "Drug Abusing" (on his second proper solo album, 1984's self-produced No Way No Better Than Yard). In 1985, Wales moved over to producer King Jammy's label and recorded a series of hits that included "Na Lef Jamaica," "Ha Fi Say So," "Right Moves," "It's Raining," and "Water Come a Mi Eye," among others. The Rulin' album appeared in 1986 on the Black Solidarity label, and several collections of his work for Jammys also followed in the late '80s.[The Teacher Meets the Student]
By that time, however, Wales' style seemed increasingly out of date; other toasters had upped the ante for lyrical technique, and slackness and gun talk ruled the dancehalls, leaving little room for Wales' staunch Rastafarianism. Nonetheless, he remained an active presence on the Jamaican music scene for quite some time, both as a recording artist and as a mentor to up-and-comers like the young Shabba Ranks. He cut an album for George Phang in 1989 called Undercover Lover, and focused chiefly on collaborations during the early '90s. Duo albums with old cohorts U-Roy (Teacher Meets the Student) and Charlie Chaplin (Kings of the Dancehall) appeared in 1992 and 1994, respectively, and a duet with Beres Hammond, "Hey Girl," was a smash hit in the U.K. in 1993. The solo album Cowboy Style was released onKing Jammy's label in 1994, and Wales also worked with the likes of Gussie Clarke, Tappa Zukie, Philip "Fatis" Burrell, and Bobby Digital during the decade. In 1997, Wales was robbed at a Kingston bar and managed to survive gunshot wounds; the incident briefly revitalized his recording career, as he scored Jamaican hits with the singles "Bush Wacked" and "Who Shot the Colonel" later that year. In 1998, Wales joined the reunited King SturGav Hi Fi Sound System, touring with the likes of Charlie Chaplin, Brigadier Jerry, and U-Roy.
Biography by Steve Huey
About REALITY TIME:
More than 15 years of consistent participation in Northern California's reggae scene qualifies Kurious as an old dog among the Bay Area's myriad selectas and sound systems. Top artists like Luciano, Yami Bolo and Warrior King have contributed to his impressive collection of dub plates. This Oakland native has spun at every dancehall venue worth its salt and 'long side any and all reputable selectas in the area. Reggae heads come from all 'round to hear his generous mix of bashment, ganja man and God-bless riddims every time he shows up to the dance.
For the last 5 years Selecta Kurious has been the co-host and dj for his very popular Internet radio show Reality Time. Broadcasting every Sunday and internationally reaching tens of thousands of devoted listeners weekly, Selecta Kurious and Mc Taiyefoon have over 150 shows under their belt and have interviewed and hosted the who’s who of Reggae artists: Barrington Levy, Eek-A-Mouse, Sugar Minott, Pato Banton, Lucky Dube, Tony Rebel, Jr. Reid and Yami Bolo, just to name a few.
Taiyefoon is Oakland born and grown. He began his radio career at Cal State Hayward where he hosted the university's popular hip-hop/reggae show Rip City Radio while studying broadcast media. The gentle giant has absorbed the reggae scene since the Reagan era when Eek A Mouse was an Omni regular and Sun Splash annually accompanied the arrival of spring at Berkeley's Greek Theater. Currently, Taiyefoon is host and producer of "Full Circle," KPFA's weekly culture magazine. Together they bring you Reality Time Reggae.