Dub Essentials

Dub Essentials

Dub takes its name from the practice of “dubbing” reggae music. Starting in the late ‘60s, innovators like Osbourne “King Tubby” Ruddock and Lee “Scratch” Perry utilized the recording studio as its own instrument, adding new textures to well-known songs, subtracting the vocals, and dialing up the bass and kick drum to create hypnotic, heavy-hitting reggae edits. This collection captures dub at its peak through the lens of the aforementioned genre goliaths and peers like Joe Gibbs and Burning Spear. Approaches to dub can vary: The Soul Syndicate home in on hard grooves and get straight to the point, while Mad Professor’s warped productions unfurl much more slowly. But Augustus Pablo’s epochal “King Tubby Meets the Rockers Uptown” exemplifies the evolution of dub’s sonic signatures, with more melodic refrains and hints of pop hooks that highlight the increasing use of melodica in dub throughout the ‘70s.

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