John Clarke "Babylon Spanking" (Uptown) 1976 | MIDNIGHT RAVER
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John Clarke “Babylon Spanking” (Uptown) 1976

Jamaican expatriate John Clarke – who moved to New York from the island in the mid-1970s – cut several singles with Munchie Jackson (“In Search of The Human Race” and “Recession”) at Wackies House of Music before the 1979 release of his album Visions of John Clarke.  Not to be confused with Jamaican singing legend Johnny Clarke, John Clarke caught the ear of Studio One founder Coxsone Dodd, whose bid for distribution-rights was thwarted when the Brooklyn label Makossa quickly put in for a full license.

“Babylon Spanking” was the only tune ever issued on Bullwackie’s Uptown label.  The tune was written by Lloyd Barnes and produced by the enigmatic Jah Upton.  The 7″ single features a more stripped-down mix than the version that appears on the Visions LP.  Don’t miss the B-side version – one of Bullwackie’s wickedest and one of my all time favorites.

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