Well Pleased & Satisfied
Well Pleased & Satisfied - Give Thanks And Praise - Vinyl LP
180 gram vinyl reissue of the debut album from 1978.
Many great bands have an instigator; the main-man; the one who draws together other talent to create an exceptional body of work and the group Well Pleased And Satisfied is no exception. In this case it's a man named Ephraim 'Jerry' Baxter. Born in 1947 in the tough Kingston 11 district, after schooling Jerry started work making brooms, then progressed on to bags and handbags which he took round different Kingston department stores. Through his schooling he developed an interest in African history and soon arrived at the gates of Clement 'Coxson' Dodd's Studio One recording faculty where he auditioned a number of songs with the most successful being Wepp which appeared on the flipside of Larry Marshall's massive selling Nanny Goat. As the tail-end of the 1960's arrived Jerry and Ranchie formed The Actions with Well Pleased And Satisfied arriving a little later as the 1970's dawned.
The Actions first hit was in 1968 with Catch The Quinela for Coxsone Dodd and with the release credited to The Jamaican Actions. Giddy Up followed and sadly on the UK issue on Coxsone was credited to The Heptones. By the mid 1970's Well Pleased And Satisfied had hit with such strident titles as Black On Black (1974) and Living in The Slum (1975). The latter found UK issue on Cactus, a label owned by Creole Records, and alerted many enthusiasts who couldn't get hold of Jamaican imported records to the group. These tracks were self-financed by Jerry at the Hookim brothers Channel One studio with the cream of Jamaican session men like Sly Dunbar, Bobby Ellis and Tommy McCook and he also hired his old friend Ranchie McLean. The session group would rapidly gain the attention of all the producers in Kingston so tight was their playing, and soon they were collectively named The Revolutionaries and would appear on countless recordings both backing artists and in their own right on rocking dub albums and flipsides of 45s. Give Thanks And Praise and Love Train were the two albums Jerry recorded under the name Well Pleased And Satisfied with The Revolutionaries backing him. Recorded at Channel One and Randy's with a mix done at King Tubby's, no money had been spared on the work. These were self-financed, so they not only cost him a fair amount of money in studio and musician fees but also a great deal of time. Once in London Paul Johnson secured a deal with Mr Rana of the Burning Sounds label to issue both albums. Unfortunately the advance for the two albums given to him didn't make it back to Jerry, and Paul flitted across the Atlantic to New York instead of hopping home to Jamaica.
As the 1970's moved to the 1980's and the music changed to the more hedonistic Dancehall style Jerry's output diminished with just a few notable recordings such as Somebody's Watching You which popped up on the flipside of a Mighty Diamonds 12 from 1984 entitled Fight It Out There. He also had a London hit on the Tribesman label with an update of Bob Andy and Marcia Griffiths' Always Together released under his own name with Lovers queen Joy White taking Marcia's part. But from there he slowly disappeared from the scene, although his work lives on with so many songs as relevant today as when they were recorded almost four decades ago.
Give Thanks And Praise could almost be considered a greatest hits set with a number of Jamaican singles included such as Chat Chat, Walla Walla and Black On Black plus Living In The Slum which resurfaces as Freedom Freedom while Zion High takes the classic Rasta anthem Africa We Want To Go (originally a 1959 Calypso semi-instrumental called Tabu from Cyril Diaz & Orchestra with lyrics added later by the Rastafarians) and adds new lyrics.
Love Train highlights The Revolutionaries 'rockers' sound and is a 'showcase' album which means the corresponding dub follows each vocal track. The album contains the original vocal cut of West Man Rock, plus some outstanding Revolutionaries dubs of Jerry's vocal tracks. Over many years Jerry has consistently recorded outstanding music whether credited to Well Pleased And Satisfied, The Actions or Jerry Baxter and one listen to his work with The Revolutionaries behind him here, and I'm sure you'll agree that you are well pleased and satisfied!
1. Chat Chat
2. Give Thanks And Praise
3. Watermelon Man
4. Love Sweet Music
1. Walla Walla
2. Freedom Freedom
3. Black On Black
4. Zion High