Lead Singers from Steel Pulse, Aswad and Matumbi come together in a Historic occasion for first time ever – three of the Greatest UK Reggae Bands ever will meet for the first time 3 x The Hard Way a World Exclusive for One Love Festival –
– A unique voice, revolutionary lyrics, and a commanding stage presence have served David “Dread” Hinds well since the formation of the band in the early 70s.
Born on June 15th 1956, in Handsworth, Birmingham, England, David Hinds was the sixth child of Ruby and Charles Hinds (now deceased). His parents migrated to the UK from Jamaica in the mid 1950s as labourers recruited along with so many other Jamaicans and other British Caribbean islanders to “rebuild post World War II Britain.”
At age five, he started elementary school and completed all his schooling by 1974, acquiring 6 GCE’s and 1 A level. During that period, he developed a love for Fine Art, History, craftsmanship and music. The music out of Jamaica became a major influence on Hinds’ perception on life in years to come. Hind’s comment, “I remember each of my elder siblings coming over with the latest form of music and dance as well as what was happening socially and politically on the island.”
It was at Handsworth Wood Boys secondary school where he met band co-founder Basil Gabbidon and began the journey that became Steel Pulse.
By 1975, he became one of the founding members of Steel Pulse and continued to develop his skills of song writing, and rhythm guitar playing.
“In 1978 we sang about a revolution in Handsworth because of the injustice we saw all around us,” says Hinds. Those lyrics were soon to be prophetic, when Handsworth went up in flames in the riots of 1981.
“The answer is not violence, but opportunity,” says Hinds. “When kids have few opportunities open to them, they get frustrated and have little to do. Sadly, we saw more riots in England last summer, and it doesn’t look like we have learned our lesson. If we don’t sing about this, who will?”
“Over the years, I and I give thanks to the Almighty for the blessings I and I have received. We regularly see three generations of fans at our show, and we all want a better future for the world’s children,” says Hinds, as he talks about the impact the band has had. “Our fans stand with us through thick and thin, and we do our best to thank them for their love. Without the fans, there is no Steel Pulse. We never forget that.”
As the creative leader of Steel Pulse, Hinds is responsible for over 95 percent of the band’s output. He has also written songs for various films. The most recent have been: “Rocksteady” and “Jah Never Fail I Yet” featured in the movie “Rocksteady,” released 2010. Other scores in the past includes: “I-Spy,” featured in the movie “Klash,” (1995) “Can’t Stand The Heat,” featured in the movie “Do The Right Thing,” directed by Spike Lee (1989).
As well as writing the soundtrack to the Rocksteady film, Hinds landed an acting role, playing the part of “Ras” who was a mentor/advisor to BC, a young and upcoming racing car driver. “I’ve had auditions in the past that came to no fruition until now. Finally, one of my dreams (acting), has been fulfilled,” says Hinds.
Outside of the Pulse’s curriculum David Hinds has collaborated with artists across the globe:
- Macka B (UK), with song titled “Change The World“
- Ras Quique Neira (Chile) “Love Love Love“
- Dub Incorporated (France) “Speed“
- Broussai (France) “Live Up“
- Blackwood (French Guyana) “Jah Way“
- Lionize (US) “Killers and Crooks“
- Djamatic (France) “Roots Black“
- Alborosie (Italy) “Stepping Out“
David “Dread” Hinds“My choices of guitars have varied over the years. This is mainly because of the weight more than anything else. As a result I have chosen some of the lightest guitars in the industry. I own two Parker flyers for a good part of 15 years. The Carvins I have gotten use to most recently. Although not as light as the Parkers, they do have a crunchy and yet clean sound for reggae rhythm as well as the outlet it has to attach synthesizer type modules such as the Roland GR20 and GR55.In regards to amplifiers, the one I use most often for live work is the Roland Jazz Chorus. It is simple to operate and has a consistency in sound throughout. It gives me the clean sound that I need for rhythm. Most important of all, it is the amp that most promoters seem to have easy access to when it comes to doing shows.”GUITARS:
2 x Carvin Hollow bodied electric guitar (SH275)
Parker Flyer Deluxe
Carvin Acoustic guitar (For Live Work)I just recently landed myself an Ovation Adamas, 1978 model. That I do intend to use for live work.GUITAR for Studio Work:
Carvin and (SH275) and SchectorAMPLIFIERS:
Roland Jazz Chorus, Fender Twin Reverb, Peavey Classic (all with twin 12inch speakers with no less than a 100watts) and not so frequent, a Mesa BoogieFOOT PEDALS for Live Work:
2 x Boss DD-3 Digital Delays
Boss CH-1 Super Chorus
Boss BF-2 Flanger
Boss PH-3 Phase Shifter
Boss OC-3 Super OctaveMICROPHONES:
SHURE BETA 87 wireless set up.IN EARS:
Ultimate Ears with a Shure receiverHARMONICA:
The “Lee Oscar” Blues Harp Series
- Inner Circle (Jamaica) “Religion”
Current collaborations include works with Brinsley Ford, former lead singer of Aswad (UK), Dennis Bovell (UK) and Lions of Israel (Brazil) With the most recent release Hinds is featured along with Mojo from Morgan Heritage on “The Girl Is Mine,” a Michael Jackson cover, produced by Michael Goldwasser of Easy Star. Other projects include a reggae version of “Bare Necessities” composed for the Walt Disney album, “The Disney Reggae Club” and “Vote Barack,” a song written for President Obama’s election campaign, back in 2008 (a new version was released for 2012).
On the 2011 summer tour, David suffered a severe injury to his left shoulder, leaving him with the inability to hold and play his guitar. During this period of being ‘out of action’ he rediscovered his ability to do art and intends to have a mini exhibition of his own in the immediate future.
(unfinished, David Hinds)
(unfinished, David Hinds)
“That’s been the story of my life. I’ve always tried to use setbacks to my advantage. If I never suffered this injury, I most probably wouldn’t have been motivated to get back into something that I have always loved. That’s just to show you when one door is closed, the other is open,” expresses Hinds.
Hinds’ influences over the years have been the likes of:
- Gil Scott Heron
- Bob Marley and the Wailers
- Jimi Hendrix
- George Benson
- Herbie Hancock
- Michael Jackson
- Ernest Ranglin
- Sam Cooke
- Macy Gray,
- The Beatles
- All the Kings (blues guitarists)
- Third World
- Burning Spear
- The Abyssinians
- Stanley Clark
- Luther Vandross; and the list goes on…
Recent influences include: Ayo, Asa, Keziah Jones, Bob Dylan and Jason Mraz. “Listening to these guys have brought me closer to understanding and realizing the control the acoustic guitar has in today’s popular music.” Being an influential father himself, Hinds has five children of whom three have steered their energy towards music: son Baruch and daughters Jamilah and Shashamane.
Favorite pastimes: Going to the movies, developing real estate, fine art, table tennis, reading autobiographies on entertainers, books on Pan African activists, African History, British History, American History, listening to diverse styles of music and checking out art museums the world over. “Promoting Steel Pulse on the Sound System circuit is also a fun experience,” says Hinds.
Likes: “Real People,” boxing, fishing.
Dislikes: Phony People,” paying car fines and Babylon!!!
Aspirations: “I aspire to meet Muhammad Ali, Nelson Mandela, Angela Davis, and President Barack Obama; to visit Ethiopia and to be more involved in helping the world’s impoverished.” David continues: “I want to create a foundation of ‘giving back’ that can live beyond and continue my legacy of moving forward.”
In January 2010 Hinds wrote “Hold On 4 Haiti.” The song was written to help generate funds supporting the Solar Electric Light Fund and Partners In Health – installing solar panels for hospitals and schools in Haiti. “Yes, I remember experiencing the tremor from the earthquake while out in Jamaica recording our latest album. I was so touched by the tragic news that we went into the studio the following day and laid the track,” Hinds recalls.
Brinsley Forde is best known as the founding member of the reggae band, Aswad
He is now a solo artist recording a long awaited debut album with legends Sly and Robbie at the controls.
He is so lauded as a performer that both The Wailers band and I-Threes have seen him step in for them in the place of the legendary Bob Marley for recent live shows.
As a childactor in the children’s television series, Here Come the Double Deckers. He also starred as Wesley in the popular British sitcom, Please Sir!, and also in the feature film of the same series in 1971. He also appeared in the James Bond film, Diamonds Are Forever, as well as in The Georgian House and Goodbye Charlie Brite. Hisperformance in the cult hit film Babylon (directed by Franco Rosso), was recently revisited by the British Film Institute and is being aired on the BBC.
As a network TV host, Brinsley presented VH1 Soul Vibrations, BBC’s Ebony & Ebony on the road, BBC 6 Music radio shows Lively Up Yourself and Dub Bashment. Brinsley’s canbe heard presenting the acclaimed radio documentaries Behind The Smile the real life of Bob Marley & Island Rock eight-part series to mark the 40th anniversary of Jamaica’s Independence.
Double time grammy nominee lead singer of Aswad, Brinsley scored a British number one chart hit with Don’t Turn Around. Followed by another top 20 chart hit, Give A Little Love. The band continued to feature in top 20 in the British charts with the Distant Thunder album and tracks “On and On” and “Next to You”& Shine
Brinsley Forde lives by theRastafarian code of life – Jah Ras Tafari!
Matumbi formed in 1971 in South London, with a line-up of Ted Dixon (vocals), Euton Jones (drums), Dennis Bovell (guitar), Errol Pottinger (guitar), Eaton “Jah” Blake (bass guitar) Bevin Fagan (vocals), and Nicholas Bailey (vocals, later better known as Nick Straker).In the early 1970s they acted as a backing band to touring Jamaican musicians. In 1973, they opened for The Wailers at the Ethiopian famine relief concert in Edmonton, where much to their embarrassment they went down better than the headliners, Bovell later saying: “The press thought we were much better, and we felt terrible because they were our heroes.” Matumbi signed to Trojan Records, and had a major breakthrough in 1976, when their version of Bob Dylan’s “Man in Me” became the biggest-selling UK reggae single that year.
Dennis Bovell has earned himself the reputation of being Britain’s reggae maestro, from pioneering early developments in the genre over 20 years ago to producing classic hits. He is renowned as an accomplished multi-instrumentalist (playing guitar, bass and keyboards), sound engineer, composer, band leader and producer and continues to lead the UK scene with innovative and adventurous music.
Bovell has built a formidable reputation as a musician, producer and sound engineer, collaborating with great artists including I Roy, Steel Pulse and Errol Dunkley and Johnny Clarke. After leaving Matumbi, Bovell continued to diversify his musical talents. He produced Janet Kay’s huge hit Silly Games, which reached number two in the UK charts in 1979 and opened his own recording facility Studio 80. Bovell also formed the Dub Band, beginning an enduring partnership with reggae poet Linton Kwesi Johnson which has resulted in classic albums including Forces of Victory (1979), Bass Culture (1980), Tings An’ Times (1991) and LKJ in Dub: Volumes One and Two (1981, 1992). It has also meant tours around the world playing to audiences from South Africa to Sweden, from Japan to Germany.
The 1980s saw Bovell in great demand as a producer, working with bands as diverse as The Slits, Chalice, The Thompson Twins and Bananarama. He re-mixed albums for the great Marvin Gaye as well as Wet Wet Wet and The Boomtown Rats and worked closely with Nigerian Fela Anikulapo Kuti. Other great artists that Bovell has worked with include Alpha Blondy, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Dexy’s Midnight Runners, Edwin Collins and Pablo Moses.
Bovell has also carved a niche out for himself in the world of television and film. He was the musical director for the film Babylon and for the TV series The Boy Who Won the Pools (ITV). He wrote the theme music for the Channel 4 documentary series The Bandung File and for the BBC 2 programme Rhythms of the World .
Throughout this period Bovell continued his career as a solo artist, releasing a number of albums: A Who Seh Go Deh; Leggo A Fi We Dis; I Wah Dub; Higher Ranking Scientific Dub; Yu Learn; Strictly Dubwise, Brain Damage and Audio Active. His 1993 release Tactics was lauded as ‘assured, polished reggae from a master producer and musician’ (Elle magazine) and featured a wealth of great musicians such as Rico Rodriquez (trombone), Eddie Thornton (trumpet) and Steve Gregory (flute and saxophone). Bovell’s 1997 album Dub of Ages with its 10 inspired tracks continued the dub excursions which began over 25 years ago when Bovell began making exclusive cuts for his sound system Sufferers Hi-Fi. It also heralded Bovell’s 25th year in the music business. To date, Dennis Bovell continues to record, produce and play live all over the world.