Peter Hunnigale Interview (Part 2)


Here is the second part of our interview with Peter Hunnigale, we discuss traveling to Jamaica to perform and record, his dislike for Yard tapes, and his latest release Free Soul on the Peckings label.

So did you listen to Jamaican Sounds on Yardtapes at all?

Gratefully not. I didna€™t go through that Yardtapes from Jamaica thing. Nah, thata€™s not music. Bring your dubplates and play your original dubplates, Ia€™m not into tape. Tape is something thata€"this is my attitudea€"tape is something that they went, a€oh yea put that in the machine and play ita€™. No, I want your dubplate, or I want your seven-inch, you know what I mean. What got me with tapes, people was bringing like tapes, and playing like a€yea I got this tune,a€™ and you say a€yea youa€™ve got it?a€™ And theya€™ve got it on the tape a little BASF tapea€"a€whata€™s this then, mate? Where did you tape this from? Well Ia€™m not interested.a€™ You know, we want the real thing or nothing, and thata€™s what it is. But yea, it was always a real thing for me with music, so I never got into that tape thing, Sound Clash tape thing. Ia€™d really predominantly like to get to the dances if I can myself, you know what I mean, and that would be cool.

Tell me about traveling to Jamaica to record with Gussie Clarke and performing at Reggae Sunsplash?

How the recording went with Gussie Clarke in JA was it was a Trevor Hartley session. We were sort of going through a thing with a company called Level Vibes Music at the time and they had some dealings with Gussie Clarke in Jamaica so they decided to senda€"well, predominantly Trevor Hartley to Jamaica to do some recording work. They asked who did he want to go with and he said a€well I want to take Peter Hunnigalea€™. So thata€™s how I got there. So we both went there, and both being artists, youa€™re gonna be in the studio, you know and its Trevor Hartleya€™s thing, but you know, say a€put down a voice pon a tunea€™ type of thing, and thata€™s what we did. I recorded a song called a€oeA Love Like Thisa€A which got released on the Anchor label, and that was my first recording in Jamaica actually being there in the studio, working with Steven Stanley and everyone else. Gussie Clarke is a really lovely bredda, hea€™s so helpful to you, and everything that you need to doa€"and it leaves a good spirit in me. I will never forget those days, you know? And I was able to meet Donovan Germain as well, cause they used to work next door to eachothera€"youa€™d have Music Works here, and Penthouse here, both almost sharing the same driveway, drive in, go left to Penthouse and right to Music Works. Really good days and really lovely people, nice people. Ia€™ve done recordings for Jamaican studios, but here. They send the tapes over here now and we voice here and send the tapes back to them, whatever.

So as a UK artist was it special for you to be able to perform at Reggae Sunsplash? Or was it just another gig for you?

No absolutely nota€¦ Ia€™m not sure, we went there, we had a good feeling, good buzz going to do a good show, which we did. But the problem is we was warned that the press side of the eventa€"in other words the newspapers and the criticsa€"will always fight against you cause youa€™re a English artist, theya€™re not gonna have it, you know what I mean? Myself went out, an RnB band called Cruise went out, Janet Lee Davis, Mike Anthony, and there was a chick from Canadaa€"I cana€™t remember her namea€"she was there as well. And we was the export in terms of Jamaica, we was coming in, you know, and we put on a really nice show, a really good show. And the ironic thing about it was we didna€™t play with a UK band, we played with Lloyd Parksa€™ We the People band, which is a Jamaican band. And especially on my set, I was playing traditional Jamaican music, you know, none of it was real Lovers Rock or such it was proper Reggae riddims a play. And all I was doing, my background singers, was lead vocal and harmonies type thing, so we had it pat down. You can bet your bottom dollar that none of the editorials was going to support us in any way, shape whatsoever. They couldna€™t knock us and say a€oh the English sound is weaka€™ because it was a Jamaican sound we was using, you know what I mean. It was thoughtless, but they gave us no credit whatsoever, they didna€™t mention us in no way, shape or form in terms of like the next day previews in the subsequent magazines and newspapers that came off the festival tour. Cause they was doing like, tour pamphlets of what was happening, how the gigs went, whatever, people would be writing bits and pieces about the shows, and in all the editorials we never got no mention. But the one thing that saved us was the people, cause they heard the radio and they made the judgment themselves, you know? The editorials werena€™t really ready to accept English music. But we got there through the blessing of a guy calleda€"if I remember his name correctlya€"Dennis White, a really nice guy who had the faith in us to come across Jamaica, and gave us the opportunity to play in Jamaica; and it was the last Sunsplash event, you know, Sumfest had taken over the Sunsplash light, so yea, it was the last one. It was good, it was a great experience…

.::Read the full interview at -> MusicMNP

Photos by Prasanna Balasundaram

Words by Tristram Keefe


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Posted: August 28th, 2008
at 10:32pm by Black Ock

Categories: music

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