Augustus Pablo (born Horace Swaby) passed away in May 1999, leaving behind one of the most formidable and influential bodies of work in the history of reggae; yet, he never achieved the international

Augustus Pablo (born Horace Swaby) passed away in May 1999, leaving behind one of the most formidable and influential bodies of work in the history of reggae; yet, he never achieved the international status of artists like Bob Marley or Peter Tosh. Well-respected by his musician peers, Pablo was a noted producer and composer and a fine keyboard/ synth player, though, interestingly, he first came to the attention of reggae fans for his melodica playing. East of the River Nile is one of Pablo's most famous albums; it's also one of the greatest reggae records of all time (another of Pablo's recordings, King Tubby Meets the Rockers Uptown, is equally important). Released in 1978 on the Message label (an imprint started by Pablo and his brother), the songs were tracked at Lee Perry's Black Ark studio. While Pablo was one of the pioneers of dub reggae, most of the songs on East of the River Nile are original instrumentals not created as dub versions. The title track (included here in two versions) caused a sensation in Jamaica when it was originally released. Pablo's haunting melodica track, played in a minor key, is a great example of his much-imitated "Far East" sound. Out of print for too long, this digitally remastered 25th anniversary edition of East of the River Nile offers a vivid reminder of Pablo's brilliant melodic sense and his pivotal role in reggae's artistic growth.—PVV