The Second Disc

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Legacy Grows New Reissues by Peter Tosh

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In 1970, a non-profit organization, the National Organization for Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), was created to influence public opinion on the legality of cannabis use in America. With the support of advisory board members like Willie Nelson, Bill Maher and Tommy Chong, it’s arguably one of the best-known and best-organized groups on marijuana advocacy.

Six years after NORML was created, one of the most potent pro-pot songs was released – Peter Tosh’s “Legalize It.” Tosh was a luminary figure on the reggae music scene, having been a founding member of The Wailers with Bob Marley (his work can be heard up through the Burnin’ album in 1973). Tosh eventually struck out on his own and created some of the most evocative music of the genre, particularly his first two albums for Columbia, Legalize It (1976) and Equal Rights (1977).

This month, Legacy kicks off a celebration of the late Tosh’s life and career, first by releasing the title tracks to those two albums on a special 7″ single for Record Store Day (available on red, yellow or green vinyl) and by re-releasing his 1976 NORML public service announcement to radio stations across America. Then, on June 21, Legacy will release some fully-loaded Legacy Editions of both albums.

Each two-disc set is filled with scores of rare and unreleased material: Legalize It features one disc with the original album and seven unreleased demo versions, and another with Tosh’s original, unreleased mix for the record (allegedly “rescued from the garbage heap by someone ‘with a keen eye,’” according to a press release) and a handful of extremely rare “dub plate” versions pressed as high-quality acetates for use in clubs and dance halls.

Equal Rights, which featured the drum-and-bass team of Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare (soon to become one of the most beloved production teams in reggae and dance music history), is similarly packed, featuring 22 rare and unreleased bonus tracks, including outtakes, demos, alternate versions and more dub plates. Both are also augmented with new liner notes by Roger Steffens (for Legalize It) and Herbie Miller (for Equal Rights). Both men are well-known as reggae enthusiasts and personal contacts of Tosh; Steffens is the curator of The Reggae Archives, a large collection of Wailers and Tosh ephemera, and Miller, Tosh’s former manager, curates the Jamaica Music Museum in Kingston.

Check the track listings for both versions after the jump and order them here and here at Amazon.

Peter Tosh, Legalize It: Legacy Edition (Columbia/Legacy 88697 76490-2, 2011)

Disc 1: Original LP and demos

  1. Legalize It
  2. Burial
  3. What’cha Gonna Do
  4. 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 (Demo)
  11. No Sympathy (Demo)
  12. Why Must I Cry (Demo)
  13. Igziabeher (Let Jah Be Praised) (Demo)
  14. Ketchy Shuby (Demo)
  15. Till Your Well Runs Dry (Demo)
  16. Brand New Second Hand (Demo)

Disc 2: Tosh’s original mix, alternates and dubs

  1. Legalize It
  2. Burial
  3. What’cha Gonna Do
  4. 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)

Disc 1, Tracks 1-9 released as original LP – Columbia PC 34253 (U.S.), 1976
Disc 1, Tracks 10-16 and Disc 2, Tracks 1-10 previously unreleased
Disc 2, Tracks 11-12 and 14-16 released on limited edition dub plates, 1976
Disc 2, Track 13 from The Ultimate Peter Tosh Experience (Shanachie 6802, 2009)

Peter Tosh, Equal Rights: Legacy Edition (Columbia/Legacy 88697 74691-2, 2011)

Disc 1: Original LP and outtakes

  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
  9. 400 Years
  10. Hammer (Extended Version)
  11. Jahman Inna Jamdung
  12. Vampire
  13. Babylon Queendom
  14. You Can’t Blame the Youth
  15. Mark of the Beast

Disc 2: Demos, alternates and dubs

  1. Get Up, Stand Up (Alternate)
  2. Dub-presser Man (Dub Plate)
  3. I Am That I Am (Shajahshoka Dub Plate)
  4. Heavy Razor (Shajahshoka Dub Plate)
  5. Equal Rights (Extended Version)
  6. African (London Sound System Dub Plate)
  7. Jah Guide (Dub Plate)
  8. (Fight) Apartheid (Alternate)
  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)

Disc 1, Tracks 1-8 released as  original LP – Columbia 34670, 1977
Disc 1, Tracks 9-15 and Disc 2, Tracks 1, 5, 8-10 and 15 previously unreleased
Disc 2, Tracks 2-4, 6 and 11-14 previously released on limited edition dub plates, 1977

Written by Mike Duquette

April 7, 2011 at 13:23

Posted in News, Peter Tosh, Reissues

4 Responses

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  1. I love that reggae from this era is such a treasure trove of unreleased vault material! The Marley Deluxe Editions were the same way.

    What’s with “Hammer (Extended Version)” on Disc 1 of “Equal Rights”? Where can the original, “non extended version” be found if it wasn’t on the original LP?


    April 7, 2011 at 15:22

  2. I didn’t realize they were doing Legacy’s on BOTH! I’d seen that the Equal Rights one was coming, but not Legalize It. I’m in for BOTH!

    It seems, though, that the Legalize It Legacy will replace the last remaster (since it contains its’ bonus track “Ketchy Shuby”), but it doesn’t look like either of the bonus tracks from the previous remaster of Equal Rights made the Legacy Edition (“Pick Myself Up” and “African”). That kinda sucks.


    April 7, 2011 at 16:12

  3. I can’t wait!! I first heard about this release on his Facebook page and I was amazed!!


    May 18, 2011 at 04:37

  4. […] Pop Matters has a well written review of the reissues that you can read here. Then check out some of these other reviews: […]

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