This afternoon I cycled out to the Port Colborne YMCA to complete a 3000m swim and then cycled back again (that’s 3 hours of activity all in). Yay me! Now to celebrate that success I’m going to but back on every single calorie I burned and then some, beginning by attacking the last cheese log in our refrigerator and making it my New Years bitch. Oh, and then there’s a little Blackspoitation to kick off the New Years celebration prior to the Chinese food and Exploding Kittens (I know, we’re animals) with ‘The Harder They Come‘ soundtrack.
Released in 1972, the heart of the soundtrack comes from performances by the film’s star, reggae singer Jimmy Cliff. Only the title track ‘The Harder They Come‘ was recorded by Cliff specifically for the soundtrack, with three earlier songs by Cliff added. The remainder of the album is a compilation of singles released in Jamaica from the period of 1967 through 1972, assembled by the films director and co-writer, Perry Henzell, from songs by favored reggae singers.
In addition to Cliff, these artists include The Melodians, The Slickers (‘Johnny Too Bad‘), DJ Scotty, and seminal early reggae stars Desmond Dekker and Toots and the Maytals (‘Sweet and Dandy‘ and ‘Pressure Drop‘).
The soundtrack played a major part in popularizing reggae in the United States and the world beyond, the film itself preventing the genre from remaining an isolated phenomenon in Jamaica. And while I’m not the greatest lover of reggae, I sure do loves me some Blacksploitation soundtracks so, yeah, I went with it. In 2003, the album was ranked #119 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. The album also appears on greatest albums lists from Time and Blender, and was named the 97th best album of the 1970’s by Pitchfork Media.
This afternoon-slash-evening, I figured my big ass plate of cheese deserved a big ass dose of cheese reggae to accompany it.
Don’t hate the player…