Today’s Oldies Sunday comes from legendary Grammy winning Reggae group, Black Uhuru! Titled “General Penitentiary“, this was produced by Sly & Robbie for the Taxi Label in 1979 and features vocals from members Derek “Duckie” Simpson, Michael Rose (Mykal Rose), and the late Sandra “Puma” Jones. The single speaks on the experiences of someone who is serving time in Prison, the conditions they live in, and warns “Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time“.
“General Penitentiary” was featured on the group’s 1979 album, “Showcase” but was later a part of two re-editions of the album named “Black Uhuru” (1980) and “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner” (1983) sporting different versions respectively. Despite numerous group changes including the departure of Michael Rose, the passing of “Puma” Jones, and the inclusion of a young Junior Reid, the group went on to release more albums and singles, and were the first recipients of the first ever “Best Reggae Album” Grammy for their 1983/1984 album, “Anthem” and 6 more nominations over the years. They continue to be an Influence for many Reggae Artists worldwide, and “General Penitentiary” continues to get heard live and via DJ sessions.
Thank You Black Uhuru for this timeless song!
DOWNLOAD BANANA BILL!