I Roy Touting I Self

I Roy was one of the great DJs of the '70s, among the most erudite in Jamaican history. He compiled this best of compilation shortly before his death last year. It's not as good as the recent Blood and Fire collection, but throws in some interesting oddities that show I Roy at his manic best. The title tune features one of his infamous spaghetti Western-inspired dialogues taunting fellow DJs. The bumpy, soul-influenced rhythm of the tune is an example of I Roy's willingness to rap over odd rhythms, as is the banjo driven "Walk Right In." His style is incomparable; a humorous tone in his voice always graced his jazzy improvisations. His rhyming ability was unmatched, so much so that even his slacker songs like "Hooligan" engage the listener with the sheer skill of the vocals. These tracks range from the early '70s to the early '80s, and it would have been nice to have some more information about the producers involved. It's also a bit puzzling that I Roy left some of his biggest hits off this package, but who am I to judge? Especially when he's resurrected some obscure favourites of his own for all to enjoy. (Heartbeat)