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Dub: Songscapes and Shattered Songs in Jamaican Reggae
Michael Veal     Available: April 2007

 
The first inside story of this Jamaican reggae style

Dub: Songscapes and Shattered Songs in Jamaican Reggae book cover
















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When Jamaican recording engineers Osbourne “King Tubby” Ruddock, Errol Thompson, and Lee “Scratch” Perry began crafting “dub” music in the early 1970s, they were initiating a musical revolution that continues to have worldwide influence. Dub is a sub-genre of Jamaican reggae that flourished during reggae’s “golden age” of the late 1960s through the early 1980s. Dub involves remixing existing recordings—electronically improvising sound effects and altering vocal tracks—to create its unique sound. Just as hip-hop turned phonograph turntables into musical instruments, dub turned the mixing and sound processing technologies of the recording studio into instruments of composition and real-time improvisation.

In addition to chronicling dub’s development and offering the first thorough analysis of the music itself, author Michael Veal examines dub’s social significance in Jamaican culture. He further explores the “dub revolution” that has crossed musical and cultural boundaries for over thirty years, influencing a wide variety of musical genres around the globe.

CONTENTS  

List of Illustrations /  ix  
Acknowledgments /   xi  
Introduction /   1  

1. Electronic Music in Jamaica: Dub in the Continuum of Jamaican Music /  25  
2. "Every Spoil Is a Style": The Evolution of Dub Music in the 1970s /  45  
3. The "Backbone" of Studio One /  95  
4. "Jus' Like a Volcano in Yuh Head!" / 108  
5. Tracking the "Living African Heartbeat" / 140  
6. "Java" to "Africa" / 163  
7. "City Too Hot:" The End of the Roots Era and the Significance of Dub to the Digital Era of Jamaican Music / 185  
8. Starship Africa: The Acoustics of Diaspora and of the Postcolony / 196  

Coda. Electronica, Remix Culture, and Jamaica as a Source of Transformative Strategies in Global Popular Music / 220  
Appendix: Recommended Listening / 261  
Notes / 271  
Bibliography / 295  
Index / 313  





“This extraordinary book, with its rich interpretation of the aesthetics and social significance of dub, constitutes a dramatically original contribution to the study of Jamaican popular music, and should be a landmark in popular music studies as a whole.”  
        Peter Manuel, professor of ethnomusicology, John Jay College and CUNY Graduate Center

“Veal’s wise volume has rescued Reggae music at last from the tentacles of exoticism. This is a glorious affirmation of dub’s rebel, Creole spirit.”           Paul Gilroy, Anthony Giddens professor of social theory, London School of Economics


MICHAEL VEAL is associate professor of ethnomusicology at Yale University, where he specializes in ethnomusicology and African-American music.
He is the author of Fela: The Life and Times of an African Musical Icon (2000).
 

 

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1973-75 1976-77 1978-87 1988-94 1995-96 1997-99 2000-01 2002-04 2005 -     Studio
KING TUBBY DUB DISCOGRAPHY   1973 - 1975 KING TUBBY DUB DISCOGRAPHY   1976 - 1977 KING TUBBY DUB DISCOGRAPHY   1978 - 1987 KING TUBBY DUB DISCOGRAPHY   1988 -1994 KING TUBBY DUB DISCOGRAPHY   1995 - 1996 KING TUBBY DUB DISCOGRAPHY   1997 - 1999 KING TUBBY DUB DISCOGRAPHY   2000 - 2001 KING TUBBY DUB DISCOGRAPHY   2002 - 2004 KING TUBBY DUB DISCOGRAPHY   2005 -   KING TUBBYS STUDIO DISCOGRAPHY
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