Yabby You – Deliver Me From My Enemies (1977)

Yabby You (aka Vivian Jackson, born 4 August 1946) passed away a week ago, January 12, from a brain aneurysm at 63 years old. This is his third album, and a mighty fine one, fleshed out with bonus tracks of nice rarities by the wonderful Blood & Fired lable. There’s not much I can add to the description below taken from the liner notes, typed out in their entirety by my friend from Addis Ababa (thanks!). The links are at the bottom of the page.. R.I.P.
BAFCD / LP 051
Title: Deliver Me From My Enemies
Artist: Yabby You

1. Deliver Me From My Enemies
2. Deliver Me From My Enemies Version
3. Judgement Time
4. Blood A Go Run Down King Street
5. Love In Zimba
6. Zion Gate
7. Lonely Me
8. Stranger In Love
9. Pound Get A Blow
10. Pick The Beam
11. And Amlak (One God)
bonus tracks:
12. Jah Vengeance / Yabby You & Trinity [12″ mix]
13. Free Africa / Yabby You & Trinity [12″ mix]
14. Babylon A Fall / The Prophets [12″ mix]
15. Falling Babylon / Tony Tuff [12″ mix]
16. Pick The Beam / previously unreleased dubplate mix
17. Pick The Beam Version / previously unreleased dubplate mix

Producer : Yabby You

Mixing Engineer : Prince Jammy

Vocals : Yabby You
Drums : Sly Dunbar
Bass : Robbie Shakespeare
Rhythm Guitar : Alric Forbes & Albert Griffiths
Lead Guitar : Earl Chinna Smith & Clinton Fearon
Piano : Bernard Touter Harvey
Organ : Ansel Collins
Flute : Tommy McCook
Saxophone : Tommy McCook
Trumpet : Bobby Ellis
Trombone : Vin Gordon
Percussions : Scully Simms

Studios :
Recording : Channel One (Kingston, JA)
Mixing : King Tubby’s (Kingston, JA)

Arrangements were mainly done by Vivian Jackson, Albert Griffiths,
Alrick Forbes and Tommy McCook.
Produced for reissue by Steve Barrow
Digital restoration : Paul Alexander at CEDAR Audio, Cambridge
Mastered by Moritz von Oswald at Dubplates & Mastering, Berlin, Germany
Cover illustration & lettering by Ski Williams
Design by Intro Design Group (or The Intro Partnership?)
Thanks to David Katz, Colin Moore, Clive Plummer, Ski Williams.
Special thanks to Dave Hendley and Chris Lane for making their exclusive dubplate of “Pick The

Beam” [mixed by Prince Jammy at King Tubby’s] available for this reissue.


“Yabby You in a class by himself. That Ras there a very strong Ras, and
you have to be strong to deal with man like Yabby You: head strong,
rootically strong, biblically strong, physically strong.”[Michael Prophet]

As Michael Prophet says above, the producer and vocalist, founder of the Prophets, Yabby You
[born Vivian Jackson, Kingston 1950] occupies a unique place in 1970s Jamaican roots reggae.

Not simply in the way he constructs his songs [and their lyrical sentiment] but also in their
rhythmic conception. In this way, the words ‘Yabby You’ become almost adjectival when applied
to his rhythms; hence the celebrated ’Yabby You Sound’ . A Yabby You song is always
recognisable, always true to its producer’s vision.

With the release in 1977 of his third album “Deliver Me From My Enemies”, Yabby completed a
trilogy that began in 1975, with the stunning “Conquering Lion” album and continued through
1976 with “Walls Of Jerusalem” [Both LPs are included on the 2-CD set “Jesus Dread”, BAFCD
021]. These albums – and the many singles released by Yabby in the same period – constitute a
striking body of work, at once pure, coherent and moving. Although the original LP – issued
through Yabby’s association with Grove Music in London in 1977 – was, overall, perhaps not quite as spiritually consistent as the earlier works, it certainly offered a more varied range of styles. As well as songs that matched the earlier works in intensity and expression – like “Judgement Time”, Blood A Go Run Down King Street” or “Zion Gate”, there were straight-ahead love songs like “Lonely Me” and the recut of John Holt‘s “Stranger In Love”. Yabby’s treatment of this type of material prefigure the work he would shortly undertake with vocalists Wayne Wade, Patrick Andy and Michael Prophet. He recently explained his decision to record this type of material:

“I was not a person who live with woman, run-run round and girl-girl, those things. So mostly now I use to look at myself as somebody by meself, never no woman, so… lonely me ! An ‘ “Stranger in Love” now, I did love that song…..”

The instrumental “Love In Zimba” is, similarly, another recut – in this case an old ska classic,
Baba Brooks “Shang Kai Shek”- whilst the anthemic “Amlak” has a pronounced Nyabinghi feel
and “Pound Get A Blow”, unusually for the producer, comments on the relatively modern matter
of currency devaluation. The powerful title track pleads convincingly for guidance and protection
from God, directly relating to Yabby’s own situation at the time:

“I was livin’ at a place – that was Kingston 13, a road name Burke Road, number 9, up by Maxfield
Avenue – up Channel One way. A policeman own the place, an’ im wife was a teacher. So I never
expect them to believe in obeah-ism, y’know? The wife, me an’ she grew up, an’ her parents dem
never expected dem could a deal with dem tings. So, she rent me a back room [and] we share
the same facilities, like the bathroom and washroom. One mornin’ when I get up, my daughter,
she show me a box, weh ‘ave in all kind a obeah bottle, black oil, black powder, all kind of
spiritual, diabolical black obeah bottle….an’ I was so surprised, that I decide now, seh, well, me a
fe move. Me a mek a song, an’ mi jus’ go in a di bathroom, and look ‘pon the bottle, look ‘pon it as
mi enemy, an’ so the song come up – “Deliver Me From My Enemies”.

As a bonus track, we have also included the b-side to the original 45 rpm issue.

“Pick The Beam” also relates to a series of fractious experiences Yabby was having at the time:

“Those days you use to ‘ave the Rasta business, an’ you ‘ave the church business.. The Rasta
man always tryin’ fe show seh Haile Selassie is the Supreme. And meanwhile the church people
dem use to show seh Jesus is the son of the Almighty, son of the Creator, the true son. Well,
each one want fe tell fe dem point, dem never really tell of the life weh dem demselves live, beca’
to me, righteousness is an action, weh you suppose to exercise right livin’, to be righteous. Wrong
livin’ is unrighteous.

So I use to say, instead of tryin’ fe show other people, you mus’ first pick the beam out of our own
eye, pick the mote that is over our own eye, so we can see clearly, fe guide others, fe show
others what is right from what is wrong.. So I come up with that song, pick the beam out of your
own eyes, yunno?”

For the additional bonus tracks we have added a brace of 12” discomix songs that originally
appeared as Grove Music releases; “Jah Vengeance” revisits Yabby’s earlier classic, utilising a
steppers remake of the classic song of retribution – the “Jesus Dread” 2-CD set contains versions
of the original cut, whilst this recut showcases deejay Trinity, who also made his own album for
Yabby You [“Shanty Town Determination” BAFCD 031] . Yabby had this to say about his
association with the deejay, with whom he was reunited for a series of European appearances a
couple of years ago:

“Well, Trinity – Dillinger bring Trinity to me, an’ tell me seh, well, ‘im would a like fe promote
Trinity, because anywhere ‘im go a dancehall, ‘im carry ‘im. So ‘im would a like fe promote ‘im.
When he bring ‘im to me, I show Trinity seh well, what I really defendin’ is righteousness, God
fearin’ lyrics.

It was about God, the creation, it wasn’t really strictly about dancehall an’ dem things. So I show
seh, if ‘im is willin‘, to come and do those style a songs, pertainin’ to the Supreme, pertainin’ to
what is right. An’ ‘im agree right away, so me start fe record ‘im. When we start record ‘im, ‘im
realise seh the crowd like ‘im, beca’ what did draw me to ‘im, ‘im sound like Big Youth. Big Youth
is popular those days, an’ ‘im sound exactly like Big Youth. An’ Big Youth those days was a man
incline fe do conscious lyrics. Then ‘im just fit in, to me ‘im did more versatile than Big Youth. ‘Im
catch on right away. ‘Im start go about now an’ record fe all kind a people, Joe Gibbs an’ all
different producers.

Trinity is in similar Jah Youth-inspired form on his other track, “Free Africa”, on which Yabby
eccentrically includes Guatemala in his lyrical roll-call of ‘African’ countries. The remaining 12”
single included is “Babylon A Fall”, credited to the Prophets on release, the latter part of which
contains some excellent soloing by the hornsmen. The other side of that single featured Tony
Tuff, performing in the then-new ’singjay’ style. Tony was another singer that Yabby brought into
his circle at the time and who eventually made a whole album with the producer:

“Those days now, the style weh Tony Tuff a do, it was more like a sing-type a deejay, those
things they call singjay, an’ I like the idea, yunno. Tony Tuff did in a group with Sugar Minott and

Eric ’Bubbles’, name African Brothers, and ‘im start to do that type a thing. I use to suggest to him
seh, mek Sugar Minott leave the group, beca’ ‘im ‘ave a better voice, so ‘im start tryin’ new tings…
‘im start try the idea now, an’ then we call it a singjay ting. The group eventually mash up, ca’
Sugar Minott go start sing fe Coxsone,, sing back on Coxsone old riddim, an’ Eric Bubbles go
away. So the style eventually work in Tony Tuff benefit….”

The album closes with two mixes taken from a dubplate made by Dave Hendley and Chris Lane
of the song “Pick The Beam”, with a mix by Prince Jammy that differs considerably from the
previously available mixes on 45 and LP. Blood and Fire are please to present this expanded
edition of “Deliver Me From My Enemies”, featuring one of Jamaica’s greatest roots artists
offering us his strikingly original world view.

Steve Barrow / September 2006

Yabby You – Deliver Me From My Enemies (1977) in 320kbs em pee three

Yabby You – Deliver Me From My Enemies (1977) in FLAC LOSSLESS AUDIO

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  1. awesome. do you have jesus dread by any chance?

  2. Hi,

    thanks for this but can't figure out the password?

  3. password: vibes

  4. hi BJ, as a matter of fact, yes I do and I can share it here soon. 😉

  5. Thanks for this.

    I'm a little disappointed with the sound of this reissue. There's distortions all the way through, notably in the drums. Seems like they mastered it too loud and some of the sound got clipped. Could be, though, that the tapes had some distortions also.

    Anyway, nice post and good music. There's not much reggae in lossless format out there.

  6. My old vinyl copy still serves me well – I just transferred it to CD. Lovely album, lovely post.

  7. Always cool to discover new artists one has never heard off before. Thank you!

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