Peter Tosh Legacy Editions Announced
Both double-CD packages will contain a lion's share of previously unreleased material from the original sessions (and material previously available on very limited edition Dub Plates), along with new essays by Reggae scholar Roger Steffens (on Legalize It) and former manager Herbie Miller (Equal Rights).
The re-releases of Legalize It (1976) and Equal Rights (1977) coincide with the 40th anniversary birthday in March 2011 of NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, based in Washing¬ton, DC). Tosh endorsed and supported the organiza¬tion, and recorded a PSA (public service announcement) for NORML in 1976, promoting the legalization of marijuana. In 2011, Tosh's PSA is being re-launched at radio in a partnership between Legacy and NORML.
Along with Tosh's advocacy for NORML, Legalize It and Equal Rights serve as reminders of the glory of vinyl. In recognition, the two classic title tracks, "Legalize It" and "Equal Rights," will be coupled as a special 7-inch vinyl single. The double-A sided single will be released in conjunction with this year's fifth annual National Record Store Day on Saturday, April 16th. Honoring the colors of Tosh's beloved Rasta flag, the single will be available in collectible red, green and gold vinyl editions.
Adding immeasurably to the historical impact of Legalize It: Legacy Edition is an evocative 2,000-word liner notes essay by Roger Steffens, a close friend to Peter Tosh in his lifetime, and an enduring keeper of the flame as the curator of the Reggae Archives, the world's largest collection of Wailers and Peter Tosh material. Steffens is the co-author (with Jodie Pierson) of Bob Marley and the Wailers: The Definitive Discography (2005), and Reggae Scrapbook (2007, with Peter Simon). He has also annotated dozens of reggae collections and reissues, including virtually every major Peter Tosh album. Among them is Legacy's 3-CD box set of 1997, Honorary Citizen.
Herbie Miller, who wrote the liner notes essay for Equal Rights: Legacy Edition, is internationally known for his work as the trusted former manager of Peter Tosh and a highly-respected member of the Jamaican community. He is the director/curator of the Jamaica Music Museum, based in the Institute of Jamaica in downtown Kingston. A cultural historian and photographer, Miller has also annotated many historic reggae releases, including Live & Dangerous: Boston 1976 by Tosh, a previously unreleased chronicle (issued on Legacy, 2001) of his first American tour, in support of Legalize It.
Thirty-five years have passed since the release of Legalize It, Tosh's first album as a solo artist after more than a decade in the Wailers with Bob Marley and Bunny Livingston. During that time, the Marley-Tosh signature began to achieve a worldwide notoriety that would have seriously rivaled the likes of Lennon-McCartney and Jagger-Richards, if the original Wailers had been able to stay together past 1975. Among the gems of the Marley-Tosh repertoire are such rock and reggae staples as "400 Years," "Get Up, Stand Up," "Brand New Second Hand," "Soon Come," "No Sympathy," "Reaction," "Baby We've Got a Date," and "Can't You See." The Wailers' songbook, hundreds of compositions predominantly penned by Marley, also included Tosh's "Stop That Train," "Downpressor," "Love," "One Foundation," "Sun Valley," and "You Can't Blame the Youth," among others.
Equal Rights brought together Peter Tosh's dedications to the revolutionary movements growing in Africa, and the mysticism and wonders of his personal growth as a prophet, poet, preacher and world-class musical trailblazer. The album included a number of songs that became human rights anthems over the next two decades: "Get Up, Stand Up," "Downpressor Man," "African," "Apartheid," and the title tune. There were also intensely personal songs of his revelations as a Rasta: "I Am That I Am" and "Jah Guide"; and the ultimate rude boy, proto-punk declaration of "Stepping Razor," by reggae's original roots-rock and Rasta ragamuffin.
"A quarter century later," Steffens writes, "[Tosh's] songs ring eternal with millions of strugglers worldwide, still crying out for equal rights and justice with the words of the immortal Minister of Herb."
Legalize It: Legacy Edition by Peter Tosh (Columbia/Legacy 88697 76490 2)
CD Two (Original Mix) Selections: 1. Legalize It 2. Burial 3. What'cha Gonna Do 4. No Love, No Sympathy 5. Why Must I Cry 6. Igziabeher (Let Jah Be Praised) 7. Ketchy Shuby 8. Till Your Well Runs Dry 9. Brand New Second Hand 10. Legalize It (Alternate Version) 11. Burial (Dub Plate) 12. What'cha Gonna Do (Shajahshoka Dub Plate) 13. (Igziabeher) Let Jah Be Praised (Shajahshoka Dub Plate) 14. Second Hand (Shajahshoka Dub Plate) 15. Burial (Dub Plate) 16. Legalize It (Dub Plate).
Equal Rights: Legacy Edition By Peter Tosh
CD One Selections: 1. Get Up, Stand Up 2. Downpressor Man 3. I Am That I Am 4. Stepping Razor 5. Equal Rights 6. African 7. Jah Guide 8. Apartheid Bonus tracks: 9. 400 Years (Out-take) 10. Hammer (Extended Version / Out-take) 11. Jahman Inna Jamdung (Out-take) 12. Vampire (Out-take) 13. Babylon Queendom (Out-take) 14. You Can't Blame The Youth (Out-take) 15. Mark Of The Beast (Out-take).
CD Two Selections: 1. Get Up, Stand Up (Alternate Version) 2. Dub-Presser Man (Dub Plate) 3. I Am That I Am (Shajahshoka Dub Plate) 4. Heavy Razor (Sha¬jah¬¬shoka Dub Plate) 5. Equal Rights (Extended Version) 6. African (London Sound System Dub Plate) 7. Jah Guide (Dub Plate) 8. (Fight) Apartheid (Alternate Version) 9. Vampire (Demo) 10. Jahman Inna Jamdung (Demo) 11. Hammer (Shajahshoka Dub Plate) 12. Blame The Yout (Dub Plate) 13. Babylon Queendom (Dub Plate) 14. Vampires (Dub Plate) 15. Get Up, Stand Up (Extended /Alternate Version).