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The Ethiopians

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(1966 – present)

The Ethiopians are a reggae, rocksteady, and ska vocalgroup, founded by Leonard Dillon, Stephen Taylor and Aston Morris, that started recording for Clement ‘Coxsone’ Dodd in 1966. Leonard Dillon had previously released some mento songs under the name Jack Sparrow. Around late 1966 Aston Morris left the Ethiopians.

Having left Coxsone the Ethiopians started recording at Dynamic Studios for the W.I.R.L. label releasing one of the all-time ska classics, the exhuberant ‘Train to Skaville’, which was their first success. In 1968 they recorded the song Everything Crash, their first big hit and a cry of criticism on the political situation in Jamaica at the time (water rationing and power cuts had been introduced leading to unrest, 31 people were shot by the police). Everything Crash was later covered by Prince Buster. ‘The Whip’ is another of their enduring songs from that period.

In 1969 they released the album Reggae Power and in 1970 the album Woman a Capture Man. In the period ‘70 - ‘75 the Ethiopians switched from producer to producer releasing several great songs like, no baptism, pirate and good ambition. In 1975 Stephen Taylor died in a car crash, Leonard Dillon continued to tour as the ethiopian. In 1991 he recorded the album “On The Road Again”.

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