Roots Radics  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

The Roots Radics Band was formed in 1978 by bass player Errol "Flabba" Holt, guitarist Eric "Bingy Bunny" Lamont and drummer Lincoln "Style" Scott. They were joined by many musicians, including guitarist Noel "Sowell" Bailey, Dwight Pinkney and Steve Golding, keyboard player Wycliffe "Steelie" Johnson, and saxophonist Headley Bennett. As a combined force the Roots Radics became a well-respected studio and stage band, which dominated the sound in the first half of the 1980s. They supported artists like Bunny Wailer, Gregory Isaacs and Israel Vibration and have released several albums to their name as well. As an aside, 'Radics' sounds very much like 'Radix', which is the Latin word for 'Root' also.

Somewhere late in 1979 the band recorded the riddims for Barrington Levy's first songs for producer Henry "Junjo" Lawes, credited at the time as the Channel One Stars. With hindsight these riddims are now considered the birth of Jamaican dancehall music.

As a sought after studio lineup, Roots Radics backed several well known reggae stars in the studio and on tour. For example, they appear on several Eek-A-Mouse albums: Bubble Up Yu Hip (1980), Wa-Do-Dem (1981), Skidip (1982), The Mouse and the Man (1983) and Assassinator (1983). They backed reggae superstar Gregory Isaacs on his classic album "Night Nurse" (1982), and are often credited on releases by Prince Far I, both on his solo recording work, and as part of producer Adrian Sherwood's studio supergroup Singers and Players.

Johnson went on to become half of the production duo Steely and Clevie. Bailey died from cancer in July 2014, aged 61.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Roots Radics" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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