King Tubby and the Dub Revolution

The talent, understood as the superior ability to carry out specific actions, it is without a doubt, one of the innate characteristics of the human being. In theory we all have some talent, either to write, smart, music, the kitchen, the numbers, the sport, a fine, talent to develop any activity, but nevertheless, our world has been touched by unique characters who have managed to transcend even their natural abilities to become, based on study, effort and perseverance, in genius creators of masterpieces.

King Tubby, whose given name was Osbourne Ruddock, was born 28 of January of 1941 In Jamaica. From a very young age his talent was to repair things, quickly developed a fascination with electronic objects and why and how they work. In his late teens he began to work as a radio and television repairman.

For those things of destiny, at some point he was asked to repair part of a “Soundsystem” and months later he was the favorite repairman of most Jamaican soundsystems, but his love for music led him to go deeper into music creation. A) Yes, Osbourne became Tubby, nickname with which he would be known and that refers to the tube amplifiers indispensable for the recording process of the studios of the time.

After working for various Soundsystems, in 1964 found your own: Tubby’s Hometown Hi-Fi. That thanks to the particular touch of Tubby and his unique effects quickly won the admiration of toasters, selectahs and the general public. He caught the attention of producer Duke Reid who offered him a job at his studio Treasure Isle., where Tubby's affinity for experimentation helped him expand the remix concept, developing new ways of remixing by eliminating not only the voices, but also cutting out some instrumental parts and placing them on and off the tracks, adding new sound effects, plus changes and echoes. And so the dub was born. These remixes were released on vinyl and sounded particularly on the Tubby’s Hometown Hi-Fi Soundsystem..

 Of course, the island's musicians were amazed to see how their creations changed and how they sounded.. In 1971 Tubby opened his own studio and artists like U-Roy, Big Youth, Augustus Pablo, Lee Perry and Glen Brown continued to work with him. While, produced lots of remixes for famed producer Bunny Lee.

In 1974 King Tubby releases first album under his name: Dub from the Roots, a compilation of remixes produced by Lee, from then on his musical production would not stop until his death, with such a prolific career that the number of LP's that exist under the signature of King Tubby -either as the main artist, producer, or sound engineer- exceeds 200 and the number of singles is practically uncountable.

Tubby not only created a new way of mixing songs, rather he shared his knowledge, And names like Scratch Perry, Scientist, Augustus Pablo, Sly & Robbie, o Mad Professor continued to experiment from radical reworking of tracks, constructing and deconstructing existing themes. Changing parts, adding reverbs, echoes and effects to lead dub to be considered not only a very important subgenre of Reggae music, but, being basically a mixing technique, dub has been useful for other musical genres as diverse as rock'n roll, punk rock or electronic music.

The 6 February 1989 King Tubby was killed outside his home in Waterhouse (Kingston), when he came from working in his studio. The reasons for his death were never clarified and thus the talent of the one who taught the world that music could be made from music already made left this plane.

King Tubby's musical work and its forms, creation from deconstruction and how revolutionary this fact still seems to be not understood by the majority, or at least not fairly valued. Thanks to the work of Tubby and his extraordinary skill, Dub was born and the foundational foundations of genres such as hip-hop were laid., Bass culture music, raggajungle, triphop, house, among others.

By Otto Pereda, from Spain.