Today is the day we were supposed to be traveling to the big event (click HERE) this weekend, but instead HRH and I spent the morning relaxing in front of the Tour and now we’re listening to few albums we picked up on the cheap yesterday at Our Favorite Record Shop in Thorold, Ontario, beginning with this ‘Bush Doctor‘ album by Peter Tosh.
The first thing HRH says when she sees the album:
“Hey, there’s no joint on the cover!”
And that’s true, this is likely the first reggae album we have purchased that didn’t have some massive joint displayed somewhere prominently on the album.
And the “Step-Father of the Year Award” goes too…
This is the debut album for Tosh on the Rolling Stone label in 1978, immediately benefited by the involvement of The Rolling Stones‘ Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, as well as the publicity inherent in the high-profile nature of the release.
Thankfully, Tosh was up to the challenge, and although there are moments that are less roots than anything he had previously recorded, ‘Bush Doctor‘ is no slick sellout. It’s bolstered by his incredible Word Sound & Power band featuring the legendary Sly & Robbie rhythm section along with lead guitarists Mikey “Mao” Chung and Donald Kinsey (fresh from his stint with Marley). Although the cover of the Temptations‘ ‘(You Gotta Walk) Don’t Look Back‘ single featuring Jagger’s duet with Tosh seemed like an obvious ploy at crossover radio play, the rest is more roots conscious, and only slightly less compelling than some of ex-bandmate Bob Marley’s work.
The horns on ‘Moses – The Prophet‘ ” seem like sweetening, but the title track, ‘I’m the Toughest‘, ‘Stand Firm‘, and a remake of an old Wailers’ track ‘Dem Ha Fe Get a Beatin‘, complete with I-Threes-style backing vocals, are some of Tosh’s best songs. Only the original album’s closing track, an ambitious but overwrought retelling of Genesis (no, not that Genesis) with Handel’s ‘Messiah‘, is a major misstep. Yet even here, Tosh is pushing boundaries, adding bird and thunder sound effects to his soft guitar strumming accompaniment.
And thus begins our big day of nothingness waiting for the phone to potentially ring informing us of this weekend’s surgery on my left hand (click HERE).
Things could definitely be worse I guess.