“You Can Get It If You Really Want” by Desmond Dekker - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1970Album Chart of the Decade: 1970s

TJR says

With Desmond Dekker having taken up permanent residence in England in 1969, it was no great surprise when his third LP was conceived and released on London’s Trojan Records (TBL 146 LP). An unusual arrangement was made whereby Leslie Kong would produce the rhythm tracks in Kingston and then send them over to London where Desmond would lay down his vocals. “You Can Get It If You Really Want” was one of the first singles to be recorded in this way and it gave Desmond another huge hit in the summer of 1970, only pipped to the UK no.1 spot by Elvis Presley’s “The Wonder Of You”. The song was one of only two not to be written by Desmond himself, with Jimmy Cliff having contributed that and “That’s The Way Life Goes”. The overall sound of the album is completely different to what Desmond had been doing in Jamaica. The services of producer and arranger Johnny Arthey had been procured and, although uncredited, he wrote the orchestration that served to frame the lush ska pop feel of this LP. There’s no doubt that this was a move steeped in commercial ambition. It was a dilution to an extent – but one which they got away with as there was enough strength in the rhythm section and a decent set of songs to boot. I don’t think it would be unfair to say that this LP, and Desmond’s relocation to England, was a huge step forward for Desmond Dekker the pop star – but a small step backwards for Desmond Dekker the authentic cultural spokesman for the Jamaican experience…

The Jukebox Rebel

A1 [02:38] 8.5.png Desmond Dekker - You Can Get It If You Really Want (James Chambers) Ska / Rocksteady
A2 [02:38] 6.9.png Desmond Dekker - I Believe (Desmond Dacres, Leslie Kong) Ska / Rocksteady
A3 [03:07] 6.3.png Desmond Dekker - Perseverance (Desmond Dacres) Ska / Rocksteady
A4 [03:16] 6.2.png Desmond Dekker - Get Up Little Suzie (Desmond Dacres) Ska / Rocksteady
A5 [03:07] 6.7.png Desmond Dekker - Peace On The Land (Desmond Dacres) Ska / Rocksteady
A6 [03:21] 6.3.png Desmond Dekker - Cindy (Desmond Dacres) Ska / Rocksteady
B1 [02:56] 8.8.png Desmond Dekker - Pickney Gal (Desmond Dacres, Leslie Kong) Ska / Rocksteady
B2 [02:23] 6.0.png Desmond Dekker - You Got Soul (Desmond Dacres, Leslie Kong) Ska / Rocksteady
B3 [02:13] 7.1.png Desmond Dekker - Coomyah (Desmond Dacres) Ska / Rocksteady
B4 [02:07] 7.2.png Desmond Dekker - That’s The Way Life Goes (James Chambers) Ska / Rocksteady
B5 [02:22] 7.5.png Desmond Dekker - Peace Of Mind (Desmond Dacres) Ska / Rocksteady
B6 [01:51] 6.5.png Desmond Dekker - Polka Dot (Desmond Dacres) Ska / Rocksteady

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