Trojan Compilations of the Eighties

Before the torrent of Reggae reissues in the nineties and noughties courtesy of Blood and Fire, Pressure Sounds and Soul Jazz the main people reissuing roots were Heartbeat, Greensleeves and, naturally, Trojan.

Thinking back to my teenage years these compilations and their pop-art simplicity (frequently courtesy of the Intro Design studio where I would work on and off years later) definitely "imprinted" on me. 

This, from 1981, was given to me by the advertising director Steve Lowe. He is the magically funny guy who made the legendary Maxwell commercial featuring Desmond Dekker's "Israelites". This was definitely put together with 2-Tone fans in mind.

And this great LP, almost a mixtape, I was hipped to it by the great Reggae Discography by Ed Ward in The Rolling Stone Illustrated History of Rock'n'Roll (a book I stole off my friend Francis). Definitely worth hunting that article down, indeed the whole book is excellent...

I picked this up in the original FOPP in Glasgow. The Tighten Up Series came out in the seventies but here the first three were stuck in one box. I remember caning this and Big Youth's "Dreadlocks Dread" at a very early student party in the city. One of those moments when it became clear I might actually have some fun in the city. Nice Luke Sutherland bouncing around.

Compiled by Chris Lane - a fascinating guy who went knocking at the Black Ark studio years before anyone else and ended up living there for a period with Scratch.

Two more single artist compilations. This Big Youth one especially fantastic with lots of rare cuts.

Two very nice DJ compilations.

The three Upsetter box sets. Before the Lee Perry reissues got under way these were like manna from heaven.

And these last five from "The Producers Series". The Joe Gibbs and Clancy Eccles I knew at the time from friends. The Niney and Keith Hudson I would look at covetously in record stores. The Lee Perry one I've always had - a great comp.