Dark Side of the Moon's cover image of a beam of white light passing through a prism and emerging as a full spectrum stands as a metaphor for life's complexity – though it may represent the mind of the listener after exposure to Pink Floyd's masterpiece as well. Dub Side of the Moon's aim is to split that beam into reggae's red, gold and green without sacrificing the nuances that made the original so powerful. -- Lem Oppenheimer
The idea was born during a long walk through downtown in New York. -- Lem Oppenheimer
Pink Floyd are one of rock's most successful acts, ranking seventh in number of albums sold worldwide.
I have all the Pink Floyd classics, Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here, The Wall, and many of their earlier releases. All on vinyl, the original releases on 33 rpm LPs.
BBC Radio 4 once devoted an entire programme to Dark Side of the Moon, the impact it had on people's lives. A generation of people, who moved from pop and rock, to Pink Floyd, Soft Machine, Tangerine Dream, Vangelis, and on to classical music. Probably the last generation to do so.
When I first heard Dark Side of the Moon, it blew my mind away.
Lem Oppenheimer is an executive record producer for a reggae label. As a teenager he grew up with Dark Side of the Moon. Listening to Dark Side of the Moon one day on his Walkman whilst out walking the mean streets of New York he thought: what if, a reggae version of Dark Side of the Moon.
Reggae? I like Dark Side of the Moon, I like reggae, especially Bob Marley and Vivian Jones, but a reggae version of Dark Side of the Moon? The idea sounds preposterous, it would sound bloody awful.
Lem Oppenheimer put his idea into practice, the result was Dub Side of the Moon by Easy Star All-Stars.
I don't like chain store record stores. But given a choice, I'd rather pop in MVC than HMV. MVC are cheaper, and have a better selection of music. Better still, pop in Ben's record store in Guildford.
I was in MVC, and the music playing caught my attention. That sounds familiar, I thought. It was Dark Side of the Moon, but Dark Side of the Moon as I had never heard it before, it was a reggae version. I asked what it was and ended up buying it, although I object quite strongly being forced to part with £15-99 for a CD.
What I was listening to in MVC was Dub Side of the Moon by Easy Star All-Stars.
Dub Side of the Moon is brilliant. It manages to retain all the timings and phrasing of the original.
It is a reggae tradition, to put in a few extra dub tracks at the end of the album, as for example can be found on Vivian Jones Iyaman. Dub Side of the Moon is no exception, four dub mix bonus tracks can be found at the end of the album.
Synchronicity: A few days after I first heard Dub Side of the Moon, I wrote these thoughts into a web page. On the Sunday I went down to Brighton for a community seed swap organised by Seedy Sunday. Had he not died of cancer, it would have been Bob Marley's 60th birthday!