Saturday, July 21, 2007

classik albums: Right Time

The Mighty Diamonds blend soulful Motown and roots reggae

In spite of the lame album art, The Mighty Diamonds 1976 debut album Right Time remains a high point of the roots reggae era. Featuring silky smooth vocal harmonies and rock solid grooves, Right Time is nearly flawless and helped to launch the group out of the poverty of Kingston, Jamaica (just like that other guy).

Led by the emotive vocals of Donald "Tabby" Shaw, The Mighty Diamonds covered many topics on their debut album. Rastafarian-inspired political anthems and spiritual psalms are balanced with sweet songs about love and more everyday troubles such as living without a roof (check out the aptly titled "I Need a Roof" below). Beyond the incredible music, The Diamonds gained fame due to their well-polished and choreographed stage show which was heavily influenced by the R&B music that flooded Jamaica in the late 1960s.

Without having to say too much, it is safe to say that anyone who considers themselves to be even a modest fan of reggae needs to check out Right Time. Not only is it one of the best reggae albums ever created, it also makes for a welcome alternative to all of the reggae you've already heard from that other guy.

The Mighty Diamonds - Have Mercy
The Mighty Diamonds - I Need a Roof

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bonus Fact: the follow-up to "Right Time" was produced by BOBKA idol Allen Toussaint. The album wasn't well received, but the Diamonds have since gone on to release over 40 albums in their career and still perform live.