Various Artists: Norman Jay MBE presents Good Times 30

Various Artists: Norman Jay MBE presents Good Times 30
In the 1980s, Norman Jay made his name by DJing warehouse parties. In his 30 year career, his contributions to music were so large that he was awarded the MBE in 2002. He celebrates his 30th anniversary by curating this Good Times 30.
Norman Jay describes himself as a house DJ but there is very little evidence of that in Good Times 30. The first half of Good Times 30 is comprised of are stylized 70s throwback jams. Some tracks are actually from the 70s like Ted Taylor‘s “Ghetto Disco,” one of the most infectious songs on the album. Other songs are from modern times but sound like they belong in the 1970s such as Avery Sunshine‘s “I Got Sunshine.”
The turning point comes with the seemingly out of place “Tired Fe Lick Weed In a Bush” by Jacob Miller & Inner Circle. The track is the only real reggae track on the whole album and it comes after a slew of soul and funk numbers and it precedes hip hop tracks by The Basement Khemist and J Boogie.
After the two hip hop tracks the album’s focus gets a little murky again. There is a bossonova track by Attic Tree, a house track by Fries & Bridges, and the album closes with smooth jazz track by Ashley Slater.
While most of the songs on Good Times 30 are not bad, the lack of cohesiveness in the mix make it a confusing listen. I finished listening to the compilation asking myself “what was the point of all of this?” and I still do not have an answer. Norman Jay surely sheds some light on lost classics but without a anything to link track to track, the compilation feels like a mess.
Rating: 7.0/10
MP3: Ted Taylor “Ghetto Disco”
Buy: iTunes or Insound!

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