Some call him a genius, others claim he's certifiably insane, a madman. Truth is, he's both, but more importantly, Lee Perry is a towering figure in reggae -- a producer, mixer, and songwriter who, along with King Tubby, helped shape the sound of dub and made reggae music such a powerful part of the pop music world. Along with producing some of the most influential acts (Bob Marley & the Wailers and the Congos to name but two) in reggae history, Perry's approach to production and dub mixing was breathtakingly innovative and audacious -- no one else sounds like him -- and while many claim that King Tubby invented dub, there are just as many who would argue that no one experimented with it or took it further than did Lee Perry.
Lee “Scratch” Perry was born Rainford Hugh Perry on March 20, 1936 in Kendal, Jamaica. His work as a producer and musician is considered some of the most influential in the history of ska, reggae and dub. Beginning work in the 50s as a record seller for Coxsone Dodd’s Sound System, Perry went on to start his own label, Upsetter Records. His first hit single recorded with his band The Upsetters, was “People Funny Boy”, often credited as the first recording of the rhythm now known as ‘reggae’. In 1973 he built his own studio, the Black Ark, working with such legends as Bob Marley and the Wailers, The Heptones, and Junior Marvin. Perry has never stopped performing, recording and innovating since.