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Lee Perry

Lee Perry


Lee "Scratch" Perry On The Wire

Perry Fanatics


Grand Royal Magazine issue #2 lists forty-five different nicknames for Lee Perry, but Beastie Boys fans know him best as Dr. Lee Ph.D. Perry and the Beastie Boys first teamed up in 1996, when he opened for them on tour in Japan. Later upon returning to New York, the Beastie Boys and Perry began working on what would eventually be titled "Dr. Lee PhD." That track appeared on the Hello Nasty (1998) album and its instrumental version Dr. Lee PhD. (Dub Mix) showed up on the "Body Movin" single as a bonus track. Both tracks are as much different as they are alike. It was during this period of time that the Beastie Boys were extremely interested in reggae dub music and even went on to record an as of yet unreleased twelve track album of dub instrumentals with Lee Perry's colleague, Mad Professor.

In the liner notes of Beastie Boys Anthology: Sounds of Science, Michael Diamond says the following: "We had all been influenced by Lee Perry's productions. We were into how on reggae recordings there would often be a 'dub version' on the b-side of a single, a practice that got co-opted by a few punk and early hip-hop singles as well." It was obviously the Beastie Boys' interest in Perry's work that garnered him the honor of being on the cover of Grand Royal Magazine as well as a lengthy article inside. Perhaps the most shocking fact revealed in that multi-page feature is that between 1968 and 1978 Lee Perry produced no less than 1000 record album sides. This would then include such legends as Bob Marley and the Wailers.

When interviewed in a 1998 Lisbon, Portugal TMF Channel 9 television interview, Mike D explained how the Beastie Boys and Lee Perry first came together. "It was Halloween. October 31st, 1997 of course being Halloween. Adam's birthday... and we were in the isle of Manhattan, which is where we made most of this record. And Lee Perry was performing at a club later than evening. And he had mirrors all up upon him, you know, in a magical sense. Like on his hat, he had mirrors. On his pants and on his boots, they were all drawn on and what not. But again, what is so special is because it was Halloween, so it wasn't like he was say...you know looked any different than to any of the things that was going on because Greenwich Village gets very crowded on Halloween. You know like thousands of people, I don't know. Tens of thousands of people, hundreds of thousands of people come to Greenwich Village on Halloween. It is like Mardi Gras. You know it's like a pageant...so Lee Perry comes in (to the studio). We had met him in Hong Kong actually. We had met Lee "Scratch" Perry in Hong Kong, because we had played a show together in Japan like awhile ago in Tokyo. But met him in Hong Kong just before that and actually when we met him he took of his hat and it was full of lyrics. Light bulb...whoo hoo. Anyway, way later he was playing Manhattan; so he came down. And Mario called him and hooked him up. He came down and heard the song not even a whole time. Not even a whole time, did he hear the song. He had a poster upon which the back he had written a lot of lyrics. Then he did like two takes of the song. Then we mixed it much later and boom. Although, actually the track we had recorded a while previous prior to that. Like more than a year prior to that."

Max Perlich The Pharcyde