Bristol Archive Records Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Black Roots’

The Black Roots Story

Sunday, February 23rd, 2014


‘Black Roots’ – BLACK ROOTS

Saturday, April 20th, 2013

30th Anniversary Re-release

RECORD STORE DAY SPECIAL with Unique Hand Made Screen Printed Sleeve (original sleeve included)

Strictly Limited to 100 copies and Limited to 3 copies per person

Released 20th April 2013.

With the release of the latest Black Roots album “On The Ground” and its dub counterpart “On The Ground In Dub” via our sister label Sugar Shack Records, Bristol Archive Records decided to do something special to celebrate the band’s return to the studio. What could be better than a very special reissue of Black Roots self-titled first album, released to coincide with its 30th anniversary and, as this will be a vinyl only release we thought we’d combine it with this year’s Record Store Day event.

“Black Roots” was originally released in 1983, by which time the band was established as one of the UK’s leading live acts with a strong repertoire of socially aware songs reflecting the issues of the day. When it came to their first album, they chose eight of their strongest tracks and assembled what was to become one of the classic British reggae albums of the decade.

Featuring the tracks; “The Father”, “Survival”, “Juvenile Delinquent”, “What Them ‘A Do”, “Opportunity”, “Tribal War”, “Africa” and “Move On”, the album covers themes of social alienation, deprivation, repatriation, Rastafari, violence within the black community and ends, with the tale of a failing relationship. Three decades later, many of the songs are just as relevant and provide the perfect complement to their latest recordings.

This new release will be strictly limited to 500 copies worldwide. 400 copies will be available for Record Store Day, 20th April 2013, at participating retailers and feature a facsimile of the original sleeve, whilst 100 copies will be available directly from Bristol Archive Records and very select retailers and feature a unique handmade screen printed sleeve as well as being individually numbered, a very special edition.

This is the first time this album has been available on vinyl for twenty five years and there is every likelihood that demand will outstrip supply so be sure to grab your copy. /

ARTIST: Black Roots

TITLE: Black Roots


LABEL: Bristol Archive Records


FORMAT:  Limited Edition Vinyl and Digital Download


BARCODE: 5052571041611


1.The Father


3.Juvenile Delinquent

4.What Them A Do


6.Tribal War


8.Move On

Black Roots home town success gig

Monday, November 12th, 2012

One of the best reggae bands from the 1980s, BLACK ROOTS, performed on home turf on Saturday night (10 November) with an official album launch gig in St Pauls.

The Malcolm X Centre show was the band’s chance to translate their new record On The Ground to the stage and prove their relevance in a much-changed musical landscape since their inception in 1979.

The result on the night was… success.

The reinvigorated roots reggae group recently dropped their first studio recording for more than 20 years and fittingly played pretty much every track off the new album interspersed with occasional older material.

Classic tracks on the night such as “The Father” and “Tribal War” fitted in well with new material including recent double A 12” “Pompous Way” adding a continuing social commentary, and “Oh Mama Africa” – an upbeat song celebrating Africa. Here it is live:

With 11 musicians on stage, including six members of the original line-up (Carlton Smith, Errol Brown, Kondwani Ngozi, Jabulani Ngozi, Cordell Francis and Charlie), the sound was not muddied or overcomplicated but rather added depth and layers of instrumentation to recreate the sound of the new record.

The newer members of the band, including a skilled horn section and a suitably tight rhythm section, also showcased their skills and place among the original musicians in the group.

Here’s the Bristol band performing new track “Landscape” from On The Ground:

Here’s “Militancy”, which could have easily come from the group’s first incarnation:

Overall BLACK ROOTS were back in their classic roots groove and seemed to keep existing fans happy while appealing to a new younger generation.

The new record On The Ground (out on Sugar Shack Records) is available on LP, CD and digital download from the usual outlets including Amazon, iTunes and the Bristol Archive Records online shop.

Nubian Records has also put together the following “reggaementry”, filmed during the recording of On The Ground, and including exclusive interviews with BLACK ROOTS original members.

Black Roots ‘Pompous Way’ – New single to drop October 15th

Friday, August 24th, 2012

October 15th sees the release of “Pompous Way” on Sugar Shack Records in conjunction with Nubian Records, the first new Black Roots single in over twenty years. “Pompous Way” is taken from the band’s new critically acclaimed album “On The Ground” also released by Sugar Shack/Nubian Records.

The double A side twelve inch vinyl release features an exclusive extended mix of the album version of “Pompous Way”, clocking in at nearly seven minutes the vocal is seamlessly followed by the dub in classic discomix fashion. Although recorded this year and dealing with the economic and political mess we are currently facing, the song doesn’t attempt to cater to any current fads. Instead it’s a slice of roots reggae the way it used to be, real musicians playing real instruments and singing about real problems.

For the AA side we have teamed up with Rootikal Productions, which is David Hill and Ashley Beedle – both men are long-time reggae lovers who bring a wealth of musical experience to the project. David is one of the people behind Rootikal, one of London’s most successful reggae nights, which has hosted some legendary guests including Cornell Campbell, Linval Thompson and Al Campbell – plus A-list selectors such as David Rodigan, Channel One and Aba Shanti I. He’s recently overseen the Rootikal Selection series of 45s, reworking versions of hard to find or unreleased Jah Thomas productions and re-editing dubs or adding trombone overdubs with Matic Horns. Prior to that, he worked with David Katz reissuing rare reggae on the Auralux label. Ashley is perhaps best known for his role in X-Press 2, The Black Science Orchestra and the Ballistic Brothers (also with David). In 2010 he recorded an album with reggae great Horace Andy, which led to a European tour. Ashley and David recently had the privilege of remixing several Bob Marley and The Wailers tracks after Island Records gave them access to the original Tuff Gong multi-track masters. They also present the Rootikal radio show together.

Rootikal were given free reign on the mix and their “Rootikal Humble Yourself Version” takes the track in a whole new direction. Shifting the emphasis onto the rhythm, the drum, the bass, the guitar, the horns and adding just a little melodica, the track is reinvented for the twentieth century. It becomes a lost classic from the late seventies and an entirely different listening experience.

In addition to the 12” limited vinyl, there is also a digital download available which adds a further two exclusive mixes from Oldwah, although this is his first official commission, Oldwah has been making his own unique reggae mixes for years and has built a large and loyal following on YouTube.

For further information on Rootikal please see

More Information very soon on where you can pre-order from!

Black Roots New Album ‘On The Ground’

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Sugar Shack / Nubian Records will release Black Roots new album entitled ‘On The Ground’ on September 10th 2012 in three formats CD, Vinyl and digital download.

Track listing for the CD is as follows:
1.       I Believe
2.       Pompous Way
3.       Long Long Ago
4.       Militancy
5.       Earth Land
6.       I Am flying
7.       Slavery
8.       Oh Mama Africa
9.       Hide out
10.     On The Ground
11.     Call Me Out
12.     No Fee
13.     Struggle
14.     Landscape
15.     Without Direction
16.     Capitalism
17.     Come and Sing

Recorded in Bristol in April at J & J Studios
Produced by Black Roots  and Mixed by Loius Becket

More news soon

Out Monday May 7th – Black Roots

Saturday, May 5th, 2012

Black Roots

All Day AII Night (Deluxe Edition)

Bristol Archives CD/DL


Recorded for the Nubian label in 1985,

Black Roots recruited Neal Fraser, The Mad

Professor, for mix duties and the trombonist

Vin Gordon for authentic brass weight. The

result of this more professional approach

was a cleaner, punchier sound, less rootsy

than previous work – an inexplicable move,

as those earlier tunes had generated BBC

sessions and a commission for the theme

music for the TV sitcon The Front Line. lt’s

mostly conscious tunes all the way, and

so magisterial is the 12″ cut to “Pin ln The

0cean” that it’s difficult for anything to

match it, although the “Face Dub” (the flute

and trombone version to “Seeing Your Face”)

is as good as anything to be found on Mad

Prof’s Dub Me Crazy series. Black Roots are

currently working on a new album.


The Columns I Soundcheck I trrewire | 0r

Black Roots Album released September 5th 2011

Friday, May 13th, 2011

 Bristol Archive Records will release on September 5th 2011 ‘The Reggae Singles Anthology’

The Deluxe Edition CD will come with a DVD of the bands performance at the Studio in 1986

Also we have a Double Vinyl album with excluisve insert


  1. BRISTOL ROCK                                    4.15                 (Bunny Marrett/Arranged by Black Roots) 1981
  2. TRIBAL WAR                                       4.22                  (Black Roots)1981
  3. THE FATHER                                       3.30                  (Black Roots)1981
  4. THE SYSTEM                                       3.58                  (Bunny Marrett/Arranged by Black Roots)1981
  5. CHANTING FOR FREEDOM              8.45               (Black Roots)1981
  6. CONFUSION                                       3.28                 (Black Roots)1981
  7. WHAT THEM A DO                            5.57                (Black Roots)1981
  8. THE FRONTLINE                                 3.43                 (Black Roots)1984
  9. MOVE ON                                           6.07                  (Black Roots)1983
  10. JUVENILE DELINQUENT                   4.23                (Black Roots)1984
  11. STRUGGLING                                     5.14                 (Black Roots)1984
  12. SEEING YOUR FACE                          4.17                 (Black Roots)1986
  13. CONMAN                                           3.22                   (Black Roots)1986
  14. PIN IN THE OCEAN                           6.38                 (Black Roots)1987
  15. SUZY WONG                                      4.57                 (P. Ecclestone)1987
  16. START AFRESH                                      5.55               (Black Roots)1988


Tracks 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,12,13,14,15 and 16 Originally released on Nubian Records, track 8 originally released on BBC Records, track 9 originally released on Silvertown, tracks 10 and 11 originally released on Kick Records.



Side A

  1. BRISTOL ROCK                                    4.15                 (Bunny Marrett/Arranged by Black Roots) 1981
  2. TRIBAL WAR                                       4.22                  (Black Roots)1981
  3. THE FATHER                                       3.30                  (Black Roots)1981
  4. THE SYSTEM                                       3.58                  (Bunny Marrett/Arranged by Black Roots)1981


Side B

  1. CHANTING FOR FREEDOM              8.45               (Black Roots)1981
  2. CONFUSION                                       3.28                 (Black Roots)1981
  3. WHAT THEM A DO                            5.57                 (Black Roots)1981
  4. THE FRONTLINE                                 3.43                 (Black Roots)1984


Side C

  1. MOVE ON                                           6.07                  (Black Roots)1983
  2. JUVENILE DELINQUENT                   4.23                (Black Roots)1984
  3. STRUGGLING                                     5.14                 (Black Roots)1984
  4. SEEING YOUR FACE                          4.17                 (Black Roots)1986


Side D

  1. CONMAN                                           3.22                   (Black Roots)1986
  2. PIN IN THE OCEAN                           6.38                 (Black Roots)1987
  3. SUZY WONG                                      4.57                  (P. Ecclestone)1987
  4. START AFRESH                                      5.55               (Black Roots)1988


Tracks A1,A2,A3,A4,B5,B6,B7,C12,D13,D14,D15 and D16 Originally released on Nubian Records, track B8 originally released on BBC Records, track C9 originally released on Silvertown, tracks C10 and C11 originally released on Kick Records.



Black Roots are: Cordell Francis – Lead Guitar, Errol Brown – Vocals, Jabulani Ngozi – Rhythm Guitar, Delroy Ogilvie – Vocals, Trevor Seivwright – Drums, Kondwani Ngozi – Congas/Vocals, Derrick King – Bass, Carlton Roots/Mikey – Keyboards/Vocals.

Additional musicians: Rico Rodriguez - Trombone on tracks 7 and 9, Dick Cuthell – Flugel Horn tracks 7 and 9, Rudi Hymes – Saxophone tracks 7 and 9, Vin Gordon – Trombone on track 12, Michael “Bammie” Rose – Tenor Sax and Flute on track 12, Max Carrot – Trumpet on track 12.

All tracks  produced by Black Roots except: track 8,10 and 11 co-produced by Denny Vidal, track 9 produced by Denny Vidal, tracks 12,13 and 14 produced by Neil Fraser (The Mad Professor).

Tracks 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 mixed by Richard Lewis (UK Scientist)

All tracks mastered by Shaun Joseph at Optimum, April 2011

Compiled and high resolution transfers by Martin Langford April 2011

All Rights Reserved

P&C Bristol Archive Records 2011

All recordings owned by Black Roots/Nubian Records and exclusively licenced to Bristol Archive Records

 All tracks published by Nubian Music except tracks 1,4 and 15 Copyright Control


The Bristol Reggae Explosion – NOW ON RED VINYL

Monday, May 2nd, 2011

We have a limited pressing – 500 copies only available to preorder now on beautiful RED Vinyl


Black Roots – Back In Business

Sunday, September 26th, 2010

Black Roots

Nubian Records Presents



For the first time in 25 years the 80′s root reggae band

Black Roots

Live on tour

With special guest

Dalas, Tan Teddy

Jamaican Folk Culture Group

Tickets £15 + bf / More on the door

On stage 12 o’clock


Trinity now operates a “Challenge 25″ policy. If you look under 25, please be prepared to show proof of age on entry

Bristol Ticket Shop 0870 44 44 4400

Genesis Records 0117 955 4992

Frontline Video 0117 955 4992

Rooted Records 0117 907 4372

Chemical Records 0117 971 4924