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During the late seventies and through into the early eighties the Stereophonic sound system played an important role in the development of dancehall. The sound had started out circa 1976 as “Sir John’s The President”, named after its owner, Big John (b. Leon John). It was originally based in the eastern part of Kingston city, on Windward Road. In July/August 1979 they moved a short distance to their new headquarters called Bionic Lawn, also located on Windward Road, Kingston 2, this time at number 30.

Their main deejay in these formative years was Welton Irie (b.Welton Dobson) and by 1977 the Stereophonic crew consisted of Welton, Colonel Flux as selector and sometime deejay/singer, and box boys Papa Dennie (b. Dennie Edwards) and Donovan. The last two would eventually perform as deejays on the set in years to come. It was at this time Madoo aka Maddo (b. Osbert Madoo) was introduced to Welton Irie at the Bionic Lawn by his late spar Scarley, and he immediately impressed the deejay with his singing, so much so that Madoo joined the set the very next weekend.


With Welton and Madoo at the controls the sounds popularity continued to grow and another piece of the jigsaw fell into place with the emergence of deejay General Echo aka Ranking Slackness (b. Earl Anthony Robinson). He had first tried his luck with his own set, which he called Echotone, before making his way onto the Ray Symbolic Hi Fi. He developed his own unique style, which incorporated storytelling, impersonations, jokes mixed with a penchant for slack lyrics.
Echo’s skills on the microphone combined with the vocals of Madoo, the Bionic Singer proved to be a big hit with the dancehall massive.


Even when Welton moved on to Gemini, the crowds, in particular in the countryside, flocked to the many Stereophonic sessions to catch the dynamic duo in action.
According to Madoo, the philosophy of hands-on owner Big John was, maybe initially, that “only Echo and Madoo should touch the microphone, not even Flux”.
Deejay Jah Scott, who was the Stereophonic mascot, was often chased away from the control tower by owner Big John when trying to get a turn on the mic. Luckily though Donovan, Django (b. David Griffiths), General Echo’s student Papa Olord and eventually Jah Scott did manage to progress through the ranks and they could often be heard performing on the sound from 1979 onwards.
Uniquely for a sound system they also gave opportunities to female deejays. Perhaps the best known, Sister Nancy (b. Ophlin Russell) was only 15 years old when she started on Stereophonic. Others like Sister Charm/Charmaine (b. Charmaine McKenzie), Sister Pauline and Echo’s one time girlfriend Sister Blossom aka Flora Lee also appeared on the set occasionally.
Colonel Flux was the main selector for the sound but he was helped in time by Papa Dennie, Parson, Fletcher, Jungle, mixer Solgie and later Big John’s step sons Dennis and Boogie joined the crew.

During the election year of 1980 the political violence between Jamaica’s two main parties was rife. Hundreds were killed throughout this year and on 22nd November, General Echo, Big John and Colonel Flux were travelling on Constant Spring Road in Big John’s Lincoln Continental when they were stopped by police who then opened fire on the occupants killing all the passengers.

Even after this crippling event Stereophonic managed to continue with Big John's son Rocky taking over the management of the sound with Rattigan helping him out. A large memorial dance was held at the Tivoli Centre in the aftermath of the tragedy and the sound managed to carry on until 1983. It was in this year that Madoo decided to emigrate to America and now with all the main players departed, this was probably was the last straw for Stereophonic, one of Jamaica’s most influential dancehall sounds.”

We would like to extend our thanks and appreciation to legendary Stereophonic singer, Maddo(Madoo), whose assistance in compiling the history of the Stereophonic sound system has been invaluable.“

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Session 1 – Stony Hill, Westmoreland, St Catherine, June/July 1979

Featuring: General Echo, Sister Nancy, Papa Olord, Ringo

Selectors – Flux & Jungle

“This dancehall gathering was held way out west in the parish of Westmoreland, in the town of Stony Hill. This recording seems a bit cut up and maybe it contains a number of sessions run together, but in the main it has General Echo and his apprentice Papa Olord working well together in a “Pocomania Style”. Echo rides the “Gorgon” riddim, proclaiming himself as the “General in Dis Ya Dance” and then goes on to air his big tune “Miss Follow Fashion”, a funny story of a girl who’s hard of hearing. Sister Nancy steps in and follows Echo’s “Drunken Master” with a warning to the men that “Money Can’t Buy My Love”.

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Session 2 – August Town, Kingston, July 1979

Featuring: General Echo, Flux, Django

Selector – Flux

“Here’s Stereophonic uptown in the August Town area of Kingston for a brief recording which features General Echo, Flux, Django and tunes from the likes of Errol Dunkley, Madoo and The Mighty Diamonds. Echo and Flux both take a turn to ride the rhythm of Dunkley’s “A Little Way Different”. “Sew Mr Tailor Man Sew” is a popular lyric of the time and Echo has his say on the subject, whilst deejay Django’s turns the air blue with his chat about a “Little Girl”, a piece of Echo inspired slackness.”

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Session 3 – Old Harbour, St Catherine, July 1979

Featuring: General Echo, Madoo

“Another short but sweet session, this time held in Old Harbour and features the combination of General Echo and “Bionic” singer Madoo. The duo delivers an extended Brigadier Jerry style spiritual medley consisting of “All Rise To Meet Jah”, “ Swing Low”, “DJ Power” for the dancehall flock. The crowd is also treated to Madoo’s big hit “Hotel Fee” as well as Echo’s raunchy “Bathroom Sex” over the timeless “I’m Just A Guy” riddim”

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Session 4 – Ackee Tree Bar, Windward Road, Kingston 2, July 1979

Featuring: Madoo. General Echo, Ringo, Flux, Django

Selector – Flux

“The Ackee Tree Bar on Windward Road plays host to the Stereophonic sound for this July 1979 recording. Most of the classic ‘Phonic crew is here with General Echo getting slack with “Give Me One Of Your Girlfriend” and “Tan Tudy” over Michigan & Smiley’s ruling “Real Rock” cut “Nice Up The Dance.” Ringo rides this too for his equally slack “Parson A Do It Sweet”. Musical selections are from Carlton Livingston and Leroy Smart, and then selector Flux steps up to take the microphone himself and he delivers a creditable Smart-like take for “Sensimillia”. Towards the end Django rides the Answer riddim for his “Answer Me Magnum.”

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Session 5 – vs King Sturgav, Tivoli Gardens Centre, Tivoli Gardens, Kingston 14, 12th July 1979

Featuring: General Echo, Madoo, Welton Irie, Ringo, Django

Selectors – Flux & Parson

“Ladies and Gentlemen, we regret to announce the death of King Sturgav sound, who died from an overdose of dub”. So says General Echo over the intro of the mighty “Burial” riddim. It’s the first of two soundclashes in a week at the Tivoli Centre between Stereophonic and King Sturgav and all the big guns are out for Stereophonic. Welton Irie is in good shape with pieces like “A Weh You Fa”, “Tan Tudy” and of course “Stereophonic A De Teacher”. Flux and Parson have the top selections of the day and these include tunes from the likes of Sugar Minott, Barrington Levy and Black Uhuru. Madoo takes the mic over the “Take 5” riddim for his hit “Hands in the Air” and then adds to the saga of the popular “Natty Dread A Weh She Want.”

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King Sturgav Hi Fi vs Stereophonic, Tivoli Gardens Centre, Tivoli Gardens, Kingston 14, 12th July 1979

Featuring: Ranking Joe, Massive Dread

Selector – Jah Screw

“There are two sides to every story and here is the King Sturgav side to this clash in the Tivoli Centre. Jah Screw’s selection is more varied with a mixture of old and new tunes and Ranking Joe spearheads the deejay attack almost solo. But he’s more than a capable deejay and takes them on with his armoury of lyrics, declaring “Stereophonic the Softest” over a Sugar Minott dubplate special “Sturgav Sound is the Toughest”. It’s not all clashing though and the massive are treated to lyrics like “African Thing Carry the Swing, “Read Up the Bible” and “Wicked Can’t Enter” over a rocking Channel One recut of the “Conversation” riddim. From time to time Joe relinquishes the microphone allowing Massive Dread some time deliver a toast about the “Mackerel Man” and to boost up the “Sturgav International Sound” in the clash”

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Session 6 – Browns Town, St Ann, July 1979

Featuring: General Echo, Jah Scott, Madoo, Flux, Ringo, Django

Selectors – Flux

“Situated a few miles inland from the North Coast, Browns Town in St Ann often played host to the top Kingston sounds. This tape has Stereophonic stopping in the town to entertain the country people with great musical selections and a deejay line up which included Ringo, Django and, as usual, General Echo. Selector Flux has plenty of big Mighty Diamonds tunes and the versions are deejayed in fine style by Ringo, with “Plant Up Your Vinyard” and General Echo with “Dis Ya Dub”. Echo’s risqué “Sex Educational Class” is also heard, deejayed over Sugar’s “Every Little Thing”, and this was always a popular draw with any dancehall crowd.”

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Session 7 – Standpipe, Kingston 6, July/August 1979

Featuring: Errol Scorcher, Dillinger, Nicodemus, Lui Lepki, Madoo, General Echo, Django, Flux, Artibella(aka Nitty Gritty)

Selectors – Flux & Parson

“Stereophonic are in the Standpipe area for this dance, and this time out the usual posse is joined by some real heavyweight deejays in the shape of Nicodemus, Dillinger and Errol Scorcher. Barry Brown tunes are carrying the swing and the version side of “Not So Lucky” has Dillinger voicing “Death To Kinarky”. Father Demus and Echo come down on a heavy dub of BB’s “Jah Lead Us” while Scorcher, the “Godfather”, deejays his massive “Roach In The Corner”. Singer Artibella makes an appearance with a lyric “If I Wasn’t A Dreadlock” and on closer listening we’ve found this to be the earliest recording we’ve heard of the late great Nitty Gritty. This excellent session was also recorded the day before the official opening of the Bionic Lawn HQ at 30 Windward Road”

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Session 8 – Skateland, Half Way Tree Road, Kingston, August 1979

Featuring: Django, General Echo, Spliffman, Danny Dread, Ringo, Madoo, Doc Halliday

Selector – Flux
Mixer - Soldjie


“One of the many ghettoblasters hung up on the wall outside the Skateland’s musicroom will have recorded this Stereophonic for posterity. Django rides the “Drifter” riddim in a rub a dub fine style and he’s joined by Nicodemus soundalike deejay Spliffman who voices “Shaolin Kid”. Selector Flux remains behind the decks this time and pulls tunes by The Tamlins, Mighty Diamonds and Al Campbell out of the dub box. Cultural chanter Danny Dread pleads for tribal unity in the city and Madoo rightly points out that “Money” is the root of all evil. Ringo and General Echo both hit the slackness lyrics, especially in the tale of “Ronnie & Miss Lou”.

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Session 9 – Braeton, Portmore, St Catherine, December 1979

Featuring: General Echo, Madoo, Flux

Selectors – Flux & Parson

“Just west of Kingston in the parish of St Catherine lies the town of Braeton. The Stereophonic sound are there to entertain and “King of Slackness” General Echo and “Midnight Attraction” Madoo don’t let the crowd down. All their favourites are here with Echo dropping tunes like “Adam & Eve”, “Bathroom Sex”, “Nah Kill No Man Over Woman” and his, then, latest single “Suzanne”. Madoo has plenty of time at the mic and he delivers his hits “Joe Grine”, “Sister Sue”and “Jamming So”. Echo’s wicked sense of humour is shown in a hilarious section of the dance in which mercilessly pokes fun at the unfortunate “Mr Chin”, much to the amusement of the crowd. Classic dancehall.”

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Session 10 – Papine, Kingston, December 1979

Featuring: Madoo, Brigadier Jerry, General Echo, Flux, Papa Dennis

Selectors – Flux & Parson

“Roots and culture meets slackness in this dance in Papine. It’s the meeting of two dancehall “Generals” with Echo declaring “Slackness Gone International” but Brigadier Jerry counters this by offering to “Dip General Echo in Culture”. Christmas greetings, both traditional and slack are offered as well. The selectors have nuff Barry Brown and Gregory Isaacs to keep the crowd moving and Madoo relates the story of the sneaky “Joe Grine” over the “Jah Shakey” riddim. Colonel Flux praises the all “Jamaican Girls” while Papa Dennis urges people to “Put Jah Before Us” in his cameo deejay appearance.”

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Session 11 – Tavern, Kingston, 8th December 1979

Featuring: Natty Clive, Madoo, Flux, Sister Pinky, Donovan, Danny Dread, Papa Dennis

Selectors – Flux & Parson

“Unusually for a Stereophonic session General Echo is absent for this pre Christmas dance in the Tavern area. Guesting on the sound are cultural deejays Danny Dread and Jah Love Musik regular at this time, Natty Clive aka Field Marshall, and he rides the “Real Rock” well for his celebratory ”Nice Up The Lawn”. Danny’s in a more cultural mood and his “Too Much Religion In A Babylon” are serious orthodox lyrics delivered over the version of Barrington Levy’s “Shaolin Temple”. Other highlights are Madoo voicing “Tribal War No Right” on the classic “Youthman” riddim and Natty and Colonel Flux and Natty in combination aboard the “Storm” rhythm for “Chicken Back”.

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Session 12 – Bionic Lawn, 30 Windward Road, Kingston, circa January 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Madoo, Flux, Sister Nancy, Sam Cooke, Ringo, Donovan

Selector – Flux, Jungle, Papa Dennie

“It’s now 1980 and for this session we hear Stereophonic nice up their own Bionic Lawn. General Echo is on top slackness form with pieces like “Cocky Anniversary”, “Cocky Beg No Friend” and a wickedly rude adaptation of the Spinners “Working My Way Back To You” soul tune. Madoo, Stereophonics main singer, airs his hit “Hotel Fee” and he’s also joined by another singer, Sam Cooke, who hails up all the “Jamaican Girls”. The sound crew drop in Sammy Dread and Madoo dubplates alongside some vintage Studio One and the entertainers keep up the vibes throughout.”

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Session 13 – v Ghetto International, Club Cancer, Savanna La Mar, Westmoreland, circa January 1980

Stereophonic - General Echo, Flux, Principal Grundy

Selector - Flux

Ghetto International – Brigadier Jerry

“Here’s some soundclashing in Sav La Mar’s well known Club Cancer and Stereophonic are up against Montego Bay’s Ghetto International. Unfortunately we only have half of the original C60 recording but you get to hear both sounds “taped in the dance”. It opens with Flux singing “Trying To Conquer Me”, showing his contempt towards the other sound. Echo joins in with his “Answer Me Magnum” before getting serious with his apocalyptic “Dread Ina Armagideon. Principal Grundy gets to deejay a piece called “Trouble Never Sat Like Rain” and by this time it’s the turn of Ghetto International, who have Brigadier Jerry on their mic for the occasion, riding some favourite Studio One scorchers.”

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Session 14 – Blossom HQ, Half Way Tree Road, Kingston circa January/February 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Madoo, Ringo, Django

Selector – Flux

“We found this small 20 minutes portion of a session at the Blossom HQ tucked away at the end of another unrelated dance. General Echo chants “Water Pump Skank” over a heavy “Bow Down Babylon” version before proclaiming himself to be the “Teacher Fe De Class”. Ringo passes through the dance and gets to ride the “I’m Just A Guy” for his variation of the popular “Na Fight No Man Over Woman” lyrics. Django gets cut off in full flow, but not before he delivers some truly slack “Toilet” humour.”

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Session 15 – Highgate, St Mary, circa January/February 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Flux, Sister Blossom, Madoo

Selectors – Flux & Jungle

“Stereophonic make a long journey to Highgate situated in the parish of St Mary for this dance. Barrington Levy tunes are ruling the dances at this time and selectors Flux and Jungle have all the popular sides to keep the dance-goers happy. Echo tells all about his “Irie Little Filly” over Levy’s “Girl Of Mine” and discusses “Ronnie & Miss Lou” on the version of “Bits Of Paper”. The Stalag riddim heralds Echo’s favourite, “Arleen” and Sister Blossom joins him with the matching piece to it, “Flora Lee”. Later on in the proceedings Madoo sings “Around The World” and a rousing “Coming From Town” which in turn leads into Echo’s massive “Sex Educational Class”.

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Session 16 – Bionic Lawn, 30 Windward Road, Kingston, circa January/February 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Bobby Culture, Sister Blossom, Blacka, Sister Nancy, Sister Pauline, Madoo


“Stereophonic are on home turf again and this session sees General Echo in high spirits especially as he’s celebrating his 6th week at number one in Jamaica for the single “Arleen”. Jack Ruby deejay Bobby Culture is a special guest for the night and he brings with him his cultural chat on “Can’t Take The Tribulation” and “Jailman Skank”, a look at life in prison over the original “Non A Jah Jah Children No Cry” version. Blacka, the brother of Stereophonic regular Donovan, makes a rare appearance and urges the crowds to “Come A Stereo Dance” for a good time.”

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Session 17 – Unknown location, February 1980

Featuring: Madoo, General Echo, Michael Palmer, Toyan, Sammy Dread, Sister Nancy, Flux, Django

Selector – Flux & Parson

“Here’s a dance taped at an unknown location and this session features plenty of singers holding the microphone. Madoo is here, as usual, and he rocks the place with “Left With A Broken Heart” and “Whole Heap A Gal”. Palmer Dog, aka Michael Palmer, gets forwards from the crowd for his tale of “Landlord” harassment. Sammy Dread, who in the past has provided Stereophonic with a series of Studio One dubplate specials, is here in person and he gives us live renditions of “Shine Eye Gal” and “Roll River Jordan”. The deejays do get a look in and Toyan rides the Studio One riddim “I’m Just A Guy” for “Mosquito One” followed by Sister Nancy for her slack piece “One Man”. Django rounds things off with his “Can’t Take The Obeah Man” over another dancehall classic, the evergreen “Real Rock”. Many thanks to Aiken for this one….

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Session 18 – Dreamland Park, Braeton, St Catherine, 23rd February 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Flux

Selector – Flux & Parson

“Braeton is a town in St Catherine and they seemed to play host to Stereophonic quite often. General Echo announces that “This Ya Sound Is Heavier Than Lead” and with musical selections from the likes of Barrington Levy, Black Uhuru and The Tamlins few could disagree. The General is in charge tonight and he touches down on the “Jah Shakey” riddim for “Natty Dread Don’t Fuss Or Fight”. His martial arts inspired hit single “Drunken Master” is delivered over Jimmy Riley’s Taxi produced “Love & Devotion”. In fact the Sly & Robbie Taxi riddims were always a big favourite with the Stereophonic selectors and they make up the vast majority of this snapshot of the session.”

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Session 19 – Blossom HQ, Half Way Tree Road, Kingston, March 1980

Featuring: Django, General Echo, Flux, Madoo, Donovan

Selector – Flux

“Here’s a short snapshot of a session held at Blossom HQ in the Crossroads area of Kingston. Flux has lots of Barry Brown tunes including a special “Stereo A De Gorgon” voiced over the original Bunny Lee riddim. Echo is in good form coming with a Yankee style rap “ Hippity Hop” and old timers Satchmo and Fats Domino get the treatment Echo-style. Deejays Django, with “Strictly Rub A Dub We A Play” and Donovan, with “Come Out Of My Life” keep the lyrics flowing on this all too short session”

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Session 20 – Blossom HQ, Half Way Tree Road, Kingston, March 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Madoo, Django, Donovan, Bubbler, Lui Lepki, Michael Palmer, Sassafrass, Errol Scorcher,Brigadier Jerry

Selector – Parson
Mixer – Soldgie


“Stereophonic The Bionic is once again in the Blossom HQ for this much longer session with nuff entertainers passing through. Echo, with his slackness and Briggy, with his culture, stand side by side trading their lyrics over an extended Tamlins/Taxi selection. Lui Lepki is in the place showcasing his new single “You Mus Si Mouse” which details “Little Miss Country” coming to town. Once again Madoo and Michael Palmer sing in a dancehall style and they are joined by Bubbler aka musician Franklyn Waul, who versions “Love Bump” over the “Far East” track.”
** Please note the last 10 minutes of this one is a Gemini session **

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Session 21 – Kingston, circa April/May 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Django, Flux, Sister Blossom

Selector – Flux & Parson

“This session was held not long after the tragic death of Jacob Miller and Stereophonic remember the man and his music with Django leading the way with his musical tribute over “Jolly Joseph” and his cultural “Jah A Me Religion”. Echo catches the vibe on “Jah Jah Is My Guiding Star” and even has a go at singing on the “Never Let Go” riddim. Listen out for Grandfather aka Goaty, the Stereophonic driver, who used to pop up from time to time on the set mimicking an “old man” much to the delight of the crowd.”

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Session 22 – Bionic Lawn, 30 Windward Road, Kingston, May 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Django, Flux, Junior Keithy

Selector – Flux

“In this session at the Bionic Lawn selector Flux has a tuff selection of tunes from the likes of Dennis Brown and Carlton Livingston and he even has time to step to the mic to chat about “International Year Of Chalice” and “Dance Pon The Corner” over some Studio One classics. Django’s upset because he’s “Lost His Hotel Fee” and a questioning General Echo wants to know who “Give Me Granny Sensi”. The little heard Junior Keithy is on hand to give guidance on his version of the dancehall roots favourite “Read Up Jah Bible”.

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Session 23 – Murray’s Hide Out, South Camp Road, Kingston, May1980

Featuring: Welton Irie, Madoo, General Echo, Django, Flux, Jah Scott

Selector – Flux

“Murray’s Hide Out on South Camp Road plays host to the Stereo crew and they have Welton Irie at the controls with lyrics like “Shaolin Temple” and “Chase Them Jahoviah” both delivered over Barrington Levy versions. Flux plays a nice Errol Dunkley section and Echo utilises this for “Everyman Does His Thing A Little Way Different”. Madoo sings out strong over a heavy seventies cut of “Man Next Door” and later we finally get to hear Jah Scott deejay on “Nah Trouble Papa Stereo” and again in combination with Django for “Armagideon Style”, which the crowd seem to enjoy.”

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Session 24 – Slipe Pen Road, Kingston, 23rd May1980

Featuring: General Echo, Flux, Madoo, Welton Irie, Django

Selector – Flux & Jungle

“At a packed venue on Slipe Pen Road, the Stereophonic crew entertains the masses and once again Jacob Miller is mourned. Echo and Welton each pay their respects and Madoo sings his tribute to “Killer” Miller. There’s musical selection from Sugar Minott and vintage Alton Ellis over which Echo urges the youth to get an education in “Gwan A School”. The Tamlins mighty “Baltimore” was always a ‘Phonic favourite and Django’s “Jacqueline” lyrics are pure slackness on the version.”

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Session 25 – Tivoli Gardens Centre, Tivoli Gardens, Kingston, circa June 1980

Featuring: Flux, Papa Olord, General Echo,

Selector – Flux

“Stereophonic, an Eastman sound, are in a dance in Western Kingston’s TG Centre and this hour long session has General Echo, his apprentice Papa Olord and Flux handling the deejay duties. Flux doubles as selector, as usual, and he has pure Tony Tuff and Horace Andy tunes for this part of the dance. “Ranking” Olord shows his style with lyrics like “Money Man Skank” and “Stereo A De Ranking” over Tuff’s Channel One dancehall favourite “Love Light”. Echo’s in a cultural mood here, wondering “How Long In A Babylon” do people have to stay and later he comments on the recent tragic Eventide fire disaster.”

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Session 26 – Skateland, Half Way Tree Road, Kingston, circa June 1980

Featuring: Django, Sister Annette, Barrington Levy, Lui Lepki, Jah Thomas, General Echo, Sammy Dread, Nicodemus

Selector – Flux

“Skateland was probably Kingston’s premier dancehall venue and here’s another short excerpt featuring a nice roll call of artists. Sammy Dread is live and direct with versions of his popular specials, “Gonna Take A Miracle” and “Fight It To The Top” as is Barrington Levy who defends the Rastaman in his “Dreadlocks Man Is A Peaceful Man”. Veteran Jah Thomas really gets the crowd going with his “New Style” chat and upcoming Lui Lepki shines on his “Cowboy Show” tale. Yellowman’s lyrics in “Eventide Fire Disaster” shows that May’s tragedy is still fresh in the mind and Nicodemus wants to know why they “Burn Down The Poorhouse”.

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Session 27 – Club Cancer, Savannah La Mar, Westmoreland, circa July 1980

Featuring: Flux, Principal Grundy, Papa Olord, General Echo, Papa D, Donovan

Selector – Flux & Parson

“Club Cancer was apparently a go-go joint on the eastern outskirts of the town of “Sav La Mar” and for this Stereophonic dance the entrance was a mere 3 Jamaican dollars. Echo is heard on “Born Ina Slackness” on this tape but a highlight here comes when Flux relates the graveyard tale of “Two Bad Duppy”. Principal “Jah” Grundy gets his chance on “Jump & Prance” and his “Roll River Jordan” is chatted over the mighty “Stalag”. Unknown Papa D supports them well with pieces like ”Domino Tournament”, “World War One” and at one point he deejays a lyric containing the bizarre line “Stereophonic Make You Vomit” over the “Mad, Mad/Johnny Dollar” riddim”

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Session 28 – Skateland, Half Way Tree Road, Kingston, July 1980

Featuring: Donovan, Brigadier Jerry, Phillip Fraser, General Echo, Danny Spang, Madoo, Welton Irie, General Screechy, Yellowman

Selector – Flux


“Here’s another good Skateland session featuring a varied roll call of artists on the mighty Stereophonic sound. Brigadier Jerry, riding the “Hypocrites” riddim, has something to say to those who “Talk Too Much” while newcomer General Screechy has a positive message in “Live Good My Brethren”. Echo and Flux work in combination delivering a “Dancehall Sermon” in a medley style. Phillip Fraser sings a version of his popular “Blood Of The Saint and Madoo’s “No Herb Smoking” suggests a ganja smoking ban was recently put in place at the Skateland venue. Yellowman, earlier described by one of the other deejays as being “brighter than a 60 watt bulb”, wraps up the proceedings with a wild tale of “Tarzan, King of the Jungle”.

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Session 29 – Skateland, Half Way Tree Road, Kingston, 23rd July 1980

Featuring: Sister Nancy, Sister Rosie, Django, General Echo, Madoo, Brigadier Jerry, Donovan

Selector – Flux

Mixer - Soljie


“Yet another session taped at Clinton “Jingles” Davy’s Skateland Roller Disco. Sisters Nancy and Rosie big up all the posses over the evergreen “Never Let Go” riddim, then Django steps in with “World War One Me Never Born” when Flux drops the original Studio One cut to it. Brigadier Jerry is once again around Stereophonics microphone stand and, as ever, he preaches roots and culture to the people. But in this all too short recording General Echo has other ideas and he proclaims that he’s the deejay that “Teaches Slackness in the Dance”.

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Session 30 – Fisher Park Road, Long Bay, Portland, circa August 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Flux, Django

Selector – Flux & Jungle


“Stereophonic make the journey out to the coastal town of Long Bay in the eastern parish of Portland. Selectors Flux and Jungle have a solid selection of tunes on show here including Carlton Livingston’s “A Lie The Gal A Tell” over which Flux tells the tale of hiding from “Mi Landlord” and he salutes the local ladies in “Long Bay Girls”. General Echo tries his hand at singing for “Rosemarie” but he soon returns to his more familiar roll as deejay with his, then, current single “Hotter Reggae Music” chatted over The Tamlins “Baltimore”, which must have been one of Stereophonics all time favourite tunes.”

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Session 31 – Oasis Club, Browns Town, St. Ann, August 1980

Featuring: General Echo, Madoo, Flux

Selector – Flux & Jungle


“Not for the first time Stereophonic are keeping a session at the Oasis Club in Browns Town and the sound crew, Flux and Jungle, offer up a fine musical selection from the likes of Barry Brown, Barrington Levy and Tony Tuff. General Echo adds to the Barnabas Collins saga in his lyrics “Me Kill Barney Last Night” as well as commenting on events of the day, such as the recent death of Ronnie Williams. Stereo’s premier singer Madoo is here too and he versions his own top tunes “Joe Grine” and “Round The World” for the crowd, who also get to hear Echo singing “Jamming So” in an authentic Madoo style.”

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Session 32 – Skateland, Half Way Tree Road, Kingston, September 1980

Featuring: Brigadier Jerry, General Echo, Flux, Donovan, Errol Scorcher. Papa Olord, Barrington Levy, Barry Brown, Sugar Minott, Madoo

Selector – Flux & Jungle


“This is probably the best known of all the Stereophonic sessions and it features a “whole heap a singers in the dance”. Barrington Levy, who was ruling the dancehall at this time, urges the people to ease up the violence in his “In This Time”. He joins forces with Sugar Minott and Barry Brown, who touches down with “Come A Stereophonic”, and they all sing together for the Skateland crowd, who then go crazy when General Echo and Errol Scorcher start to sing as well. Add to this the deejay vibes of Brigadier Jerry and Papa Olord, who shines on “Dry Land Tourist”, and you have a classic example of a Stereophonic rub a dub dance.”

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“General Echo, Colonel Flux & Big John Memorial Dance”
Tivoli Gardens Centre, Tivoli Gardens, Kingston circa late November/Early December 1980


Sessions 33 & 34

parts 1 & 2
Featuring: Sammy Dread, Django, General Lucky, Massive Dread, Papa Olord, Phillip
Fraser, Peter Ranking, Madoo, Sister Charm

Session 35

Part 3
Featuring: The Tamlins, Django, Wailing Souls, Sammy Dread, Papa Olord, Phillip Fraser, General Lucky, Peter Ranking, Madoo, Sister Charm, Massive Dread, Papa Dennis

Selector – Papa Dennie


“Many singers and deejays gathered together for this Memorial Dance for the slain Stereophonic crew, owner Big John, top deejay General Echo and selector Colonel Flux. It was held at the Tivoli Gardens Centre and its obvious emotions were running high here. Even harmony groups like Wailing Souls and Stereophonic favourites The Tamlins turn out to pay their respects to the three victims of the senseless violence.” Bionic singer Madoo poignantly remembers his sparring partners in “Another One Bites The Dust” and Massive Dread mourns Echo’s death…“They kill him like a criminal”.

Part 1

Part 2

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Session 36 – Bionic Lawn, 30, Windward Road, Kingston 2, December 1980

Featuring: Donovan, Django

Selector – Papa Dennie


“A new era starts for the Stereophonic crew and this session, held at their own HQ, finds Django and Donovan at the controls of the set. Papa Dennie selects plenty of revival riddims and the two deejays ride them “in an old fashioned way”. “Can’t Stop The Bionic” is the message they have here and “Stereo A De Dub Organizer” is chatted over a heavy cut of the “Joe Frazier” rhythm.”

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Session 37 – Bionic Lawn, 30, Windward Road, Kingston 2, 1981

Featuring: Donovan, Django

Selector – Ratty


“It’s now 1981 and this session is once again recorded on home territory and with the same crew holding the mic. Donovan urges the people to come “off a de road” and pay the musical rate of $2 Ja for a nights entertainment. The selector this time is Rattigan aka Ratty and he draws nuff Black Uhuru, Mighty Diamonds and Wayne Jarrett from Stereo’s musical box. Over Jarrett’s popular “Chip In”, Donovan comes forward with lyrics praising the weed on his “Pass The Chalwa”, while Django hits hard on his “Drifter Ina Rub A Dub Style”.

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Session 38 – Bionic Lawn, 30, Windward Road, Kingston 2, 1982

Featuring: Donovan, Puddy Roots, Django, Madoo

Selector – Ratty


“Here’s the lone 1982 session we have for Stereophonic and it features the usual deejay suspects Donovan and Django supplemented by singers Madoo and Puddy Roots. A good varied selection on this one and it has Madoo singing “Get In The Groove” over the Studio One cut of the riddim and Puddy Roots both sings and deejays on his tune “Quiet Place”. Django gives the crowd a live version of his current Junie/African Museum single “Bushmaster” over a version of M16/Scandal.”

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Session 39 – Ashanti Junction, Windward Road, Kingston 2, 28th May 1983

“Two Eastman sounds, Arrows The Ambassador and Stereophonic The Bionic, go head to head in a big soundclash. This is taped from the crowd at Ashanti Junction and it gives you the all vibes of an early 80’s clash. Arrows are heard first with their regular deejays Liberty and Shaka Shamba alongside big supa Yellowman, Errol Scorcher and singjay Simple Simon. The crowd’s volume rises when its Stereo’s turn and Ratty, the selector, winds things up with a couple of familiar “Burial” specials with Django declaring, ”Arrows Buried In A Casket”. Papa San, often heard on Arrows around this time, stars here for Stereophonic with lyrics like “Arrows Have To Go Back Home.”

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Arrows Hi Fi – Liberty, Yellowman, Shaka Shamba, Errol Scorcher, Simple Simon

Selector – Zagalou

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Stereophonic Hi Fi - Donovan, Madoo, Django, Papa San

Selector – Ratty

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Session 40 – Club Jamaica, Linstead, St Catherine, October 1983

Featuring:
Natty Pablo, Donovan, Johnny Cash, Django, Madoo

Selector – Ratty


“This is a dance celebrating Jamaican National Heroes Day and it finds Stereophonic stringing up their sound in the town of Linstead. Slackness deejaying seems to have all but disappeared and Donovan and Django instead comment on all the new dancing moves over the version of Johnny Osbourne’s massive “Water Pumping”. Cultural chatter Natty Pablo, who’s still active today on the King Sturgav set, shines on pieces like “Jah Guide Over Me” and “Dunce A Dunce”. With further musical selection from Gregory Isaacs, Hugh Griffiths and Sugar Minott, our final Stereophonics tape is fittingly rounded off by Madoo, their long standing premier singer, with his version of “You Must Believe Me.”

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Late addition
Session 41 – Kingston, February 1980


Donovan, General Echo, Welton Irie, Jubba, Brimstone, Flux, Django

Selector – Flux & Parson


“A dance held at an unknown location in Kingston and it features a good line up of artists. General Echo is here, of course, and he goes in combination with Donovan for a rousing “Jah Lead Us”. Welton Irie deejays “Ranny & Miss Lou” and also sings his way through the “Roll River Jordan” standard. Brimstone, another veteran performer, warns all rumour mongers in his “Chatty Chatty People” and in the absence of Madoo, another singer with the same style, Jubba comes forward with “Nine Months Gone.”

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