Today’s Oldies Sunday selection comes from The Harry J Allstars, lead by the late Producer, Harry Johnson a.k.a. Harry J. Titled “The Liquidator“, this was an instrumental created in 1969 for Harry J Records. The people involved in the creation along with Harry included Winston Wright (Organs), Aston Barrett (Bass), and Carlton Barrett (Percussion). It was said the Instrumental was originally made for Singer Tony Scott’s “What Am I To Do” minus a few elements. It was recorded but Harry Johnson bought the rights to the song, licensed it to Trojan Records with credit to The Harry J Allstars and added more instrumentals.
“The Liquidator” became a huge success where on October 1969, it peaked at #9 on the UK Singles Chart and in 1980 it peaked at #42. The Instrumental was also became one of the anthems for the emerging “SkinHead” youth subculture. The Bass line for “The Liquidator” was later sampled by American Producer Al Bell, which was used for the massive “I’ll Take You There” single performed by The Staple Singers in 1972. It has since been sampled by Chubb Rock, Dennis AlCapone, Bassomatic and others while it was covered by “Ernie” Ranglin, Val Bennett, Keith Levene and others. “The Liquidator” is also used by popular Football teams Chelsea, West Bromwich Albion, and Wolverhampton Wanderers to name a few. Chelsea is one of the teams to have claimed first usage of the Instrumental and is played in tribute to the winners of the UEFA Champions League.
The Harry J Allstars went on to create more music and as a Recording studio owner, Harry J gained more notoriety for having his studio be the base for many top entertainers’ recordings. Acts who have used his studio included Burning Spear, The Heptones, Bob Marley and the Wailers who have recorded 4 albums there, and many others. His then infamous studio was also featured in the movie, “Rockers“. Harry Johnson was also the producer behind Singer Lorna Bennett’s “Breakfast In Bed“, “Book Of Rules” by The Heptones and “Young, Gifted & Black” by Bob Andy and Marcia Griffiths. Harry Johnson died in 2013 and left behind a great legacy and family and friends who would go on to tell the stories of his work.
Thank You The Harry J Allstars for this Instrumental and R.I.P. Harry Johnson.
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