18 April 2018

Magnificent Seven - Reggae Bagpipes/ Roll Out The Barrel



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Label: Decca
Year of Release: 1972

Pop and rock, of course, have continually evolved as they've adopted and mixed and meshed various apparently conflicting styles. If during the sixties British groups hadn't had one eye on music hall ditties and the other on rhythm and blues, so much interesting material might never have been written and released.

But a combination of reggae and the sound of the bagpipes? Really? Never has the Simpsons slogan "Nuts and Gum, together at last!" felt more applicable. It's not as if "Reggae Bagpipes" is a mess, which is to the credit of everyone involved. While it doesn't have a particularly authentic production or arrangement going on, it would be just about credible enough to pass were it not for those droning great pipes playing "Scotland the Brave" throughout. 

To cap things off, there's a reggae take of the London saloon-room standard "Roll Out The Barrel" on the flip, which sounds almost exactly as you'd expect it to.

According to someone who has kindly uploaded the song to YouTube, The Magnificent Seven were actually a South African group who consisted of Emil Dean (Zoghby) on vocals, Paul Ditchfield on keyboards, Peter Michael and Barry Jarman on trumpet, Harold Miller on bass, Jimmy Kennedy on guitar and Doug Abbot on drums. Why a South African group were so obsessed with bagpipes, and who in the band actually played them, is not documented. This has to be one of the most puzzling singles I've ever come across. 


1 comment:

Fanny Blancmange said...

This looks right up my cup of tea. And if that's THE Harry Miller on bass, ex-pat SA Jazz legend, all the better. Thanks again.