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Al Campbell, Tony Roots and Christine Miller in London

Al Campbell, Tony Roots and Christine Miller in London

Al Campbell, Tony Roots and Christine Miller in London

By on - Photos by Adelina Royal - Comment

The smooth-voiced maestro leaves his fans shouting for more.


Al Campbell is rarely mentioned by the casual follower of reggae singers. But if you add up the sheer number of killer tunes he has recorded he belongs in the pantheon for sure. The smooth-voiced maestro performed for nearly 2 hours on Bank Holiday Sunday at the Hootananny, giving a 5 song encore yet leaving his fans shouting for more hits.

Strolling on stage in an oatmeal suit and straw hat, Mr Campbell soon broke a sweat doling out classics in lovers, roots and rub-a-dub style. Assisted by the legendary Ruff Cutt band he crooned his way through smashes like Gee Baby and Late Night Blues, along with heavyweight collectors’ pieces such as Jammin’ and You're Mine, as well as new material from his forthcoming Peckings album 'Man From Studio 1'.

Al Campbell

“Me born in music” said Al - the son of a gospel preacher - reminding the people of his multiple lovers rock number ones in the UK. A further hint at his past came with a quick a capella of his old band-mate the late Prince Lincoln’s Humanity. And while he is a master singer Mr Campbell put his pipes to other uses. He imitated the sounds of a delay effect and a bass guitar during Ruff Cutt’s many expertly rendered dub versions - especially the iconic storm-lashed Crucial Bunny Version to You're Mine.

Promoter Cecil Reuben arranged a particularly strong support act for the evening too. The UK’s Christine Miller and Tony Roots (with Sister Naffi-I) played their bottom-heavy culture music backed by a special supergroup formed from the 3 of the venue’s regular ensembles, dubbed The Artist Band. In January Al Campbell appeared in Shoreditch’s East Village singing brilliantly over Peckings rhythm tracks. With some of the country’s most respected live musicians a whole new level was reached.


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