THE LONE RANGER - BIOGRAPHY
||Albums discography :
|The Lone Ranger
- Interview 2004
- On The Web
|1979 On The Other Side Of Dub
1980 Barnabas In Collins Wood
1981 Hi-Ho Silver, Away!
1982 Badda Dan Dem
1984 D.J. Daddy
1985 Learn To Drive (compilation)
1994 Collections (compilation)
2002 Top Of The Class
2004 Dub Salvador Vol.1&2 (compilation, mixed)
2004 Kulchaklash w/Grant Phabao
From "Reggae - The Rough Guide - The Definitive Guide To Jamaican Music, From Ska Through Roots To Ragga" (Steve Barrow and Peter Dalton)
"Before Yellowman rose to dominate the early 1980s, the way was paved by the arguably more talented Lone Ranger (b. Anthony Waldron), who - along with Welton Irie, Ranking Joe, Nigger Kojak, Mikey Dread, Clint Eastwood and Ranking Toyan - negotiated the shift from the 'cultural' chants of the mid-1970s, as exemplified by Big Youth, to pure 1980s dancehall chat.
There were lines of continuity linking the new breed of deejays with the music's immediate past. Lone Ranger's first records, for instance, appeared on historically the most important of all jamaican labels, Studio One. His version of Slim Smith's rocksteady classic "Never Let Go" was "The Answer", which subsequently became the much-recorded rhythm's favoured title (as confirmed by a popular Channel One cut from U-Roy apostle, Ranking Trevor, called "Answer Me Question"). Other moderate successes came in the form of "Screw Gone A North Coast" (over Horace Andy's "Skylarking"), "Three Mile Skank" (the Sound Dimension's "Full Up") and, in the company of Welton Irie, "Chase Them Crazy" (Horace Andy's "Mr Bassie"). These Studio One 45s established him as a deejay of interest, but the real breaktrough came in 1980. Not only did Virgo Hi Fi, with which he was associated, win an award as the best sound system of the year in Jamaica, but he moved on to another producer, Alvin Ranglin, who gave the masked stranger his biggest hit to date, "Barnabas Collins" (GG). The lyrics were inspired by a vampire character from an american TV series called The Dark Shadows, but no character in the show ever had lines like:
"Gal, out the candle, lock your door tight
Turn ya neck pon your right angle
Hedem the best in the business
Chew ya neck like a Wrigley's".
The disc reached #1 in both the Jamaican chart and the UK reggae one. This was soon followed by a return to Studio One, and hits which involved more humour, and were built around the various abstract "oinks", "bims" and "ribbits" that were to be associated with the men - and women - at the mike for the next couple of years.
The success of the new hits from Brentford Road - "Love Bump" (over Slim Smith's "Tougher Yet"), "Natty Chalwa" (the Gladiators' "Roots Natty Roots"), and "Tribute To Marley" (the Studio One cut of Derrick Harriott's "Solomon") - owed something to the new style of mixing that gave a brighter feel to the studio's seminal music, whether in the form of new 'versions' or re-releases of the originals that practically every other label was 'doing-over'. The Lone Ranger's other important hits included "Fort X" (also for Ranglin), with its approriate Western theme, and "Rose Marie" (for Winston Riley's Techniques label), "M16" and "Fist To Fist Days Done" (for Channel One), "Trod On" (for Ossie Thomas's Black Solidarity), and "Tribute To All Mothers" (for the US Absissa label, though over the Sly & Robbie rhythm used on Dennis Brown's "Hold On To What You've Got" hit). No performer was more responsible for ushering in the new era than the Lone Ranger, and his influence on a whole generation of deejays (particularly in the UK) was incalculable."
|Interview - Lone Ranger - Dec. 2004
(the interview takes place in Grant Phabao's appartment in Paris)
Any historical biography details to mention?
Chester (Synmoie, Ranger's friend and manager) should be the one with the details, the likkle parts that I might have missed out... :-))
How did you meet (with Phabao)?
Through Fata (from the Soul Stereo Sound System, with whom Lone Ranger has been touring in Europe these recent years), who said "my friend is coming to Jamaica, you two should meet". So Phabao went to Jamaica, and that's where we met up. He wanted to do some recording with me and the crew.
My friends Danny Dread, Ray I... the crew!
Oh. And how did you introduce him (Phabao) to "The crew"?
I simply told them "someone of my people is here". That's enough. 'Cause Fata sent him. And Fata is my crew, my people, from the musicians, studio business. So Phabao is from my people too. But he wanted to do some recordings of new songs, not specials. So I told my friends to listen to some tracks and choose a riddim.
Did you finally record some sessions all together in Kingston that summer 2003?
Yeah! We located a studio in St Thomas, a studio which was facing the sea, on the east coeast. We were there, played tracks. I recorded, then Danny Dread recorded, then Ray I recorded. Some good work. You could have the choice on your riddim to sing on. Nice. Phabao had brought 3 CDs full of riddims! But at one point, all of us were on the same track... :) Anyway Phabao kept two takes on this riddim and back in Paris he reconstructed both of them in two wicked trakcs! Eh eh...
This was different from the (Studio One) riddims you're used to?
Yeah, kinda different flavours, a lot of ideas. Once a Japanese guy came to us with some techno. Four years ago. It was weird. Wizzz kritchchpluk pfffisss... But I managed. I voiced it! It's wacko... "Kill and Die" was the name i think.
At the end of the year (2003) you came to Europe for a new tour. What's the reaction from the european audience to the art of the Lone Ranger?
Hexstatic! Yeaaah! Many shows were booked, but a lot of them finally didn't confirm. What saved the tour was Germany. Feedback is excellent there. Good response. They're into rub-a-dub flavour. They love it. They're into it.
You did some sessions in Paris at that time?
Yes, with Guillaume (Méténier), with Seven Dub meets Boxohm Station. We did "Ain't No Sunshine", "the Herb" and "It doesn't Matter" with a girl singing... Angélique. Guillaume gave me a CD this year but I gave it to Carlton (Livingston), who left with it before I could even listen to it! I need to get another copy from Guillaume...
We did some tracks with Phabao too. "Fever", "Sweet Talking", "Ethiopia", "A Who", "Aya So We Deh".
What did you think of "La Pinède"? (TIMEC studios in Paris)
Wicked! A good studio. Clean studio. Good vibrations working in there.
Can you tell us a bit about this new european tour you're into right now? (Dec. 2004)
It's like a roadshow. "Lone Ranger & Carlton Linvingston - The Rub-A-Dub Partners". Eighteen show for the two of us plus 2 extras for Ranger. i'm going to Israel. I will be steppin' in the fatherland for the first time. :)) I'll do a show at new year's there. If it's good, the rest of the year will be good!
In Italy, Roma was wicked. A mashed-up place. Jump-up audience. People came to party that nite! We did Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, South of France... Douarnenez! On the edge of the sea, on the edge of the world! It's a village under the sea, artists who play there call it the melting pot.
What did you have for food there?
Hum... Just french fries. And ketchup. They drink everything there! A lot!!
You told me you enjoyed the Spain shows?
Spain was incredible. The audience was incredible. Hot. In valencia there was a guy showing pictures on the wall with a computer thing. There was a big picture of the Kulchaklash album, all over the wall, and my logo from the website besides it. I hadn't even stepped in Spain that images and music of The Lone Ranger were already spreading there. Man it's another country where people know me there before I even go there!! :-))
What do you think of this "Kulchaklash" album by the way?
The Kulchaklash concept-album is very good. This is the Lone Ranger going back to some original flavours, recreating the original rub-a-dub vibe flowing... The artwork is really beautiful. TIMEC did some good work on there: you can't miss Chester! Ray I you catch him good too.
You did some sessions again this year with your people?
Yes, we did some tracks with (Grant) Phabao and Carlton (Livingston). But I kept it the original flavour this time. I choose different riddims (than last year), more for Carlton to sing on. It's a different vibe. Those tracks are Jamaican tempo this time, not Phabao tempo. More based on original Jamaican tracks, so...
What are your plans for 2005 with TIMEC?
I hope to get a big deal to produce 2-3 albums a year a do a big tour all together. It could happen if Kulchaklash happens big time...
What do you think of your artist website?
It's a plus in a career. PLENTY, plenty of fans are WORLDWIDE. They must be wondering where the Ranger is, what's he's doing. This is where the answer is. People sharing musig is just promotion.
So you don't feel robbed by downloaders and file-sharers?
Not really. It's what's going on. You have to live with it. When the web thing started you felt "Damn! I'm being robbed!". But now it's common. It's like listening to the radio. That's what I see in it. It's no problem: the more people hear my songs, the more I'll be requested for live shows.
You told us Dancehall was not happening that much anymore in Jamaica, the New Roots is what's hip now?
Yeah, some rasta youth are rising up now, like I Wayne, Natty King or Warrior King!...
Where do you fit in between all this?
We're the teachers! The young can listen to old riddims and tunes, find the love, peace and good vibes there is in there, and educate themselves with the songs and riddims, you know. So in the end the business is coming right back to my hands... :)))
| More articles about Lone Ranger on the web...
[reggaecd] Anthony Waldron, the Lone Ranger, versioned some of Studio One toughest riddims on two essential albums for Coxsone Dodd in the early 80s. He was one of Virgo Hi-Fi sound system's best deejays, but the release of the Alvin Ranglin album 'Barnabas Collins' established him as the major deejay of the time. Sessions for producer Niney and Winston Riley proved almost as popular.
[centrohd] Born Anthony Waldron, the Lone Ranger was one of the most lyrically inventive late '70s DJs, with a considerable influence on the British school of MCing. Waldron spent a large proportion of his formative years in the UK, which perhaps accounted for his radically different stance, and, like so many others, he began his own recording career at Studio One. Welton Irie partnered him at first, but he soon graduated to working solo, setting himself loose on several classic Studio One rhythms, after which he became virtually unstoppable. His version of Slim Smith's seminal "Rougher Yet", re-titled "Love Bump", was a major success. So too his reading of Slim Smith's "Never Let Go", a version known as "The Answer", which has become more famous than the original. As top DJ for Kingston's Virgo Sound, he kept up appearances in the dance halls and Virgo Hi Fi were voted the top sound of 1980. His recordings for Alvin GG Ranglin assured his legendary status. "Barnabas Collins" (about a vampire show on television) contained the immortal line: 'chew ya neck like a Wrigley's', and was a UK reggae chart number 1 in 1980. His additional work for Winston Riley and Channel One, which included the memorable "M-16", proved almost as popular. His tour of the UK that year reiterated that he could do it on stage as well as on record and for the sound systems. Any performer who could deliver priceless lyrics such as 'Lightning clap and thunder roll... Noah at the ark control', would always be guaranteed a receptive audience. His repertoire of strange voices, 'oinks' and 'ribbits', were widely imitated. Ranger recorded sparingly, sometimes branching out in keeping with other DJs into self-production, and his catalogue has always been assembled with style, class and a dash of great humour.
[bigupradio] Anthony Waldron a.k.a. 'Lone Ranger' was born in Kingston Jamaica. He migrated to England during the 1960's and returned to Jamaica in 1971. During 1974 he embarked on a DJs career by working as a Disc-Jockey for a sound system located in Dunkirk. This was the period when Jamaica's music style depended on the cultural and what was called Rub-a-Dub style. It was also during this period that DJs music took its greatest leap into Jamaica's music market. Lone Ranger had become one of the most versatile sound system DJs in Jamaica. Between the year 1976 & 1979 while working for the Soul to Soul Sound System he received the honour of being selected the number one DJ during this period and made a couple of appearances on sun splash concerts.
After many successes as a Sound System DJ and with a few good hit records to his credit, Lone Ranger was not satisfied with his record producers. That decision lead him to Mr. Dodd of Studio One Records where he has done his best work to date, and has remained the public's favorite DJ.
[allmusic] Borrowing his stage name from the popular TV Western hero of the same name, the Lone Ranger was one of Jamaica's most influential early dancehall DJs. He helped pioneer a newly rhythmic, on-the-beat rhyming style that led DJ toasting into the modern age, and punctuated his lyrics with bizarre exclamations and sound effects ("bim" and "ribbit" were his favorites) that made him perhaps the most imaginative stylist of his time. The Lone Ranger was born Anthony Waldron and spent a good portion of his childhood in the U.K., later moving to Kingston. He first recorded in tandem with Welton Irie at Clement "Coxsone" Dodd's famed Studio One, but soon went solo, toasting over the rhythm tracks of past Studio One hits from the rocksteady and roots reggae eras. He also became the top DJ for the Virgo Hi Fi Sound System, resulting in its being voted the top sound system in Jamaica in 1980. The Lone Ranger's breakout hit was "Love Bump," a Dodd-produced version of the rhythm from Slim Smith's "Rougher Yet". His signature song, however, was "Barnabas Collins", an ode to the vampiric main character of the TV series Dark Shadows. Produced by Alvin "GG" Ranglin, "Barnabas Collins" was a massive hit in 1980, topping charts in both Jamaica and the U.K. An album of the same name (aka "Barnabas in Collins Wood") followed on Ranglin's label, and established him as one of the top recording DJs of the time. Over the next two years, the Lone Ranger recorded prolifically for Studio One, issuing albums like "On the Other Side of Dub", "Badda Dan Dem", and what many regarded as his strongest LP, "M-16". "M-16" featured further hits in the title track, "Natty Burial", and "Fist to Fist". He also recorded with other producers, including Channel One's Winston Riley (1981's "Rosemarie") and himself, in tandem with Clive Jarrett (1982's "Hi Yo Silver Away"). With the ascent of Yellowman and the recording debuts of other prominent early DJs (Brigadier Jerry, Josey Wales, Charlie Chaplin, etc.), the Lone Ranger found his popularity challenged; he also found some of his signature gimmicks appropriated by imitators. After his initial burst of activity, his pace had slowed considerably by the mid-'80s. He cut another album, "DJ Daddy", for Winston Riley in 1984, and followed it with "Learn to Drive", a low-profile album for Bebo Phillips' label, in 1985. He subsequently dropped out of sight.