(This page covers both Jamaican record producer Lee "Scratch" Perry, aka the Upsetter, and his studio band, the Upsetters. For the backing band of Little Richard, see Upsetters(2).)

"The Kenny Dalglish of reggae"
(Peel bestows the ultimate superlative, 14 February 1979)

Lee Perry - Croaking Lizard

Lee Perry - Croaking Lizard

Lee Perry - Croaking Lizard
A Peelenium choice for 1976

Lee "Scratch" Perry (born Rainford Hugh Perry, 20 March 1936, Kendal, Jamaica) is a musician and producer who has been influential in the development and acceptance of reggae and dub music in Jamaica and overseas. He employs numerous pseudonyms, including Pipecock Jackxon and The Upsetter.

In the early 1970s Lee Scratch Perry was one of the producers whose mixing board experiments resulted in the creation of dub. In 1973, Perry built a studio in his back yard, The Black Ark, to have more control over his productions and continued to produce notable musicians such as Bob Marley & the Wailers, Junior Byles, Junior Murvin, the Heptones, The Congos and Max Romeo. With his own studio at his disposal, Perry's productions became more lavish, as the energetic producer was able to spend as much time as he wanted on the music he produced. Virtually everything Perry recorded in The Black Ark was done using basic recording equipment; through sonic sleight-of-hand, Perry made it sound unique. Perry remained behind the mixing desk for many years, producing songs and albums that stand out as a high point in reggae history. By 1978, stress and unwanted outside influences began to take their toll: both Perry and The Black Ark quickly fell into a state of disrepair. Eventually, the studio burned to the ground. Perry has constantly insisted that he burned the Black Ark himself in a fit of rage … (read more at Wikipedia)

Links to Peel

Peel was a huge fan of Perry and played his records consistently down the decades, selecting 'Croaking Lizard' from the landmark 'Super Ape' album for the 1976 Peelenium. After the DJ's death, five Perry-produced singles were found in John Peel's Record Box.

Festive Fifty Entries


  • None


John Peel's Record Box

Peel's box of 142 favourite singles featured five produced by Perry.

Lee Scratch Perry - Baffling Smoke Signal

Lee Scratch Perry - Baffling Smoke Signal

Lee Scratch Perry - Bafflin' Smoke Signal

  • Upsetters: Bucky Skank / Yucky Skank (Down Town) 1973
  • Upsetters: Key Card / Domino Game (DL International) 1975
  • Versalites / Lee Perry & The Upsetters: Cutting Razor / Black Belt Jones (DL International) 1974
  • Lee Perry: Bafflin' Smoke Signal / Black Smoke Signal (Black Ark) 1978
  • Max Romeo: Sipple Out Deh' /Revelation (Upsetter) 1976

Shows Played

(The list below, compiled from the database of this site, features only releases issued under Lee Perry's own name, aliases such as "Scratch" or the "Upsetter", or credited to his backing band, the Upsetters, and excludes Perry's production work with other artists. For such details, please search under the name of the individual artist or see the Compilations section below. Please add more information if known.)

  • 28 January 1986: Waap You Waa (v/a 3 x LP - The Upsetter Box Set) Trojan
  • 01 February 1986 (BFBS): Waap You Waa (v/a 3 x LP - The Upsetter Box Set) Trojan
  • 08 February 1986 (BFBS): Uncle Charley (v/a 3 x LP - The Upsetter Box Set) Trojan
  • 22 February 1986 (BFBS): Double Power (v/a 3 x LP - The Upsetter Box Set) Trojan
  • 25 March 1986: Soul Food (v/a LP - Ready Steady Go Rock Steady) Pama
  • 22 April 1986: Patience Dub (LP - Scratch The Super Ape) Upsetter
  • 24 June 1986: Introducing Myself [LP - Battle Of Armagideon (Millionaire Liquidator)] Trojan
  • 28 July 1986: King Tubby And The Upsetter At Spanish Town (LP - King Tubby Meets The Upsetter At the Grass Roots Of Dub) Fay Music Inc.
Lee Perry - Kimble

Lee Perry - Kimble

A later cover version may be familiar to Fall fans.

  • 12 November 1994: Don’t Blame The Baldhead (Various Artists 2xCD - Respect To Studio One ) Heartbeat Records


(This list below, drawn from the Trojan Records and Reggae Compilations pages of this site, is intended to give a preliminary indication of plays by Peel of various artist (v/a) releases primarily focused on the production work of Lee Perry and overlaps in part with artist play listings above for Perry and the Upsetters. Please add more information if known.)

Build ark
Produced directed
Born in the sky

(LP - Various With The Upsetters ‎– Version Like Rain) Trojan

(3xLP - The Upsetters With Lee Perry And Friends ‎– Build The Ark) Trojan

(LP - Public Jestering - Lee Perry & Friends) Attack

(LP, CD - The Black Ark Presents Rastafari Liveth Itinually) Justice League

(3xCD - Arkology) Island

(2xLP - Produced & Directed By The Upsetter) Pressure Sounds

(CD - The Upsetter Shop Vol. 2) Heartbeat

(CD - Lee Perry & Friends - Chapter 2 Of 'Words') Trojan

(CD - Born In The Sky (Upsetter At The Controls 1969-1975)) Motion

(LP - Baffling Smoke Signal: The Upsetter Shop Vol.3) Heartbeat

See Also

External Links

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