Bob Andy – Experience

• “Experience” set to a picture of the man. Thanks to Fritz Magik.

7.8 “Great Ska / Rocksteady from Jamaica”

Just heard that Bob Andy was slashed on slashed on his left arm and robbed of $50,000 ($US5,000) and two cellphones, with the mugger making his escape on a motorcycle.

Jamaica Jamaica. So much trouble in the island, it almost seems hopeless.

I’ve been meaning to add “Experience” to my collection ever since I heard the Bodysnatchers do it more than 30 years ago. Better late than never!

The Jamaican Gleaner tells the back story to his big rocksteady hit of ’68:

Too Experienced is one of Bob Andy’s more popular songs, not only with audiences but also with those who have covered his songs. Barrington Levy, Eddie Lovette, Los Pericos (from Argentina), Ms Dynamite and Winston Francis have all done versions of Too Experienced – a song Bob Andy still does not know the meaning of, over 40 years after he wrote it on a bus from Parade in downtown Kingston to Cross Roads.

The Sunday Gleaner asked Bob Andy if Too Experienced is a back-handed love song or about business connections and he said, “I don’t know.” He was on the bus, returning from delivering records (most likely to Randy’s at North Parade), hurrying “to get involved in the day’s production activities.

“On the way back the song just … . This is one of the songs that you get lyrics and melody at the same time. And I stored this song away, when it was conceptualised. A lot of my songs I never write,” Andy said, making a scribbling motion with one hand. “I was writing the song in my head as the idea was coming,” he said. By the time the bus ride ended the song was “a done deal”.

Bob, if by some miracle you ever read this, don’t let the bastards grind you down. You’ll always be one thousand times the man.

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