PICK UP THE PIECES
* * * *VARIOUS - Pressure Sounds - studio - discs:1
The harmony group called The Royals changed its line up many times but the core has always been Roy Anthony Cousins. Born in Kingston in 1945, Roy started to sing at the Church of God' Junior Choir when he was a child. At nineteen Roy joyned his first vocal group with some friends. Soon he formed a group with the guitarist Berthram "Harry" Johnson and a friend called Lloydie. The first Royals were formed in 1964 with Errol Green, Berthram "Harry" Johnson, Trevor McFarlane, Maurice "Professor" Johnson and of course Roy. Maurice soon tragically died after quitting the group and forming the Tennors. In 1965 The Royals cut their first single called "House On The Hill", followed by "We Are In The Mood". In 1967 they changed their name to The Tempests. They moved to Studio One and Coxsone Dodd made them record eight tracks that were not released at the time. Years later the single "Pick Up The Pieces" was released, first credited to The Tempests and soon later to The Royals. After the Studio One session Errol Green and Trevor McFarlane left the group and Errol Wilson (also known as Errol Nelson), Keith Smith and Ivan Renee joyned in. Renee soon was murdered and Smith moved to Canada. By the same time Berthram "Harry" Johnson moved away to play bass elsewhere. Later in 1978 Errol Wilson joyned Black Uhuru. At the end The Royals were a four members group from 1967 to 1978. Since the musical success seemed a hard task to reach, in 1967 Roy went to work as a postman along with The Heptones' Barry Llewellyn, Don Carlos and the future actor Carl Bradshaw. For a short moment Lloyd Forrest and Errol Davis joyned Roy singing on sone songs, later replaced by Melvin Reid of The Ethiopians and Hal Nicholson. In the mean time some songs were recorded but only "Never Gonna Give You Up" was released. So Roy decided to self produce his music, and in 1973 he released a re-cut of "Pick Up The Pieces". In that same session he also cut "Down Comes The Rain". Soon The Royals backed the early Yabby You' Prophets cuts "Carnal Mind" and "Run Come Rally", both cut at Lee "Scratch" Perry's Black Ark. In 1977 The Royals released the Lp "Pick Up The Pieces". In 1979 they released in the U.K. the set called "Ten Years After". By the end of the 70's Roy quit The Royals and subsequently the group was renamed The Jayes. Turning to production he helped a lot of artists and finally moved to Liverpool, U.K.. This re-release presents the shining efforts made by true artists whose struggle delivered some strong music from the golden era of Reggae. The Royals fought for making music with capital letters. They reached the target for sure. The music recorded at Channel One, Dynamic Sounds, King Tubby's and Randy's proves it all.