Politics and music often go hand in hand each influencing the other both directing the masses of the population. It was during the late 1960s that a new form of music production emerged from the studios of Jamaica which would go on to affect America and England. Producers such as Osbourne (King Tubby) Ruddock, had brought into the limelight special effects such as Reverbs, echoes and delays through his sound system. It was through mare chance that dub would be born. During a vocal mixing secession he would accidently leave out portions of the vocal mix of a song. He devised a new formula that would offer him greater options in performing studio magic. During dance secessions he would play the recognizable format of the song then the accident version this was dub music coming to life. The patrons at the event were mesmerized and Osbourne would return to the studio to replicate his creation.
History of Dub Music
A common practice during the 1970s was the spinoff and counteractions of singles. This took place when an artist would release a song and a second artist would provide lyrical commentary to the first record. This would continue until there were several spinoffs versions, back then this technique was called toasting. This would later catch on in the United States of America in the concrete Jungle NYC. Rap mix tapes would later evolve from toasting into ‘dissing’ a word used when there was contention among two artists.
Dub music makes use of the Jamaican dialect which can be spoken moderately, slow or fast. The average person listening to patois may find it difficult to understand. Patois will also vary from parish to parish; depending on where you are you many notice that the speech pattern of the individual may carry a musical or emotional inflection. This special accent is an identifying marker for all island dwellers. Even without vocals present Dub music had started morph into a newly defined entity by 1973. Through experimentation and manipulation of sound tracks King Tubby Ruddock had produced the first dub album titled Blackboard Jungle.
By the mid 1970s dub remixes were a staple in clubs and the close relationship of the Jamaica and the United States allowed new trends and styles to drift from one country to the next. As the decade came to an end Rap music was born. This brought a new level of showmanship and techniques that would eventually be used in the Jamaican dancehall genre such a looping, drums and bass, lines using rhythmic tones and none melody vocals. They all gave life to the new sound.
Dub music most often was created in a live setting where the mixing board was the focal point of the action. If the sound engineer was skilled, in his hand the mixing board would crank out hit records. In addition to tweaking the sound process to produce a desired effect they also use additional studio tricks. These would range from screams, gunshots, whistles, sirens, mechanical sounds and test tones. Sometimes they would physically strike the reverb unit so as to produce a new sound.
In the late 1970s Imprint label headed by Lloyd James whose stage name was Price Jammy entered the lime light he would become a leading force in the wave that would be dub music. Jamaican artists were now touring the world and in England and the United states they had a loyal group of black and white listeners. The support that they received from this following encouraged a new curious fan base to start listening to reggae music, artists such as ‘Eric Clapton’ , ‘the Police’ and ‘Paul McCartney’ all made some hint of reggae, Stevie wonder and Marvin Gayle where much more direct.
International Influence of Dub Music
Over in England, Reggae and Dub artists made successful entrances into the music industry's battle arena by slicing and dicing studio mixes that were created exclusively for the club setting. By the 90s, eminent sub-divisions of Dub music emerged not only from Jamaica, but also the U.K. and U.S. with styles like 'Drum & Bass,' 'Jungle,' 'Trip-Hop' and 'Techno.' International groups from other genres like The Cure, Depeche Mode, Garbage, Living Colour, Nine Inch Nails, and dozens of rappers, producers and DJs tested Dub in their tracks. Dub influences are often heard in recordings with electronic drums, bass, keyboards, strings, and horns in Reggae styles like Dancehall
Dub music and reggae’s entry into England was much more successful. Dub music had fully evolved and by the 90s dub music was no longer exclusively produced from Jamaica. The United States and the U.K had taken the pure form of dub and molded it into Techno, Drum and Bass and Trip Hop. One can still hear the influence of dub even in international group for genres such as Depeche Mode, Living color and the cure just to name a few. Dub can often be heard in recordings that use bass, keyboard, horns and electronic drums. It is still very popular in reggae styles such as dance hall.