Throwback Thursdays: Rare TV Appearances by Third World

Words by Jesse Serwer—

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We’re extra pleased to have Cat Coore of the great Third World as our guest on today’s LargeUp Sessions radio program. Carrying on the Third World tradition following the recent passing of vocalist Bunny Rugs, Cat will be stopping by to discuss Bunny’s legacy and the upcoming LP, Under the Magic Sun.

Among many other things, Third World is renowned for having one of reggae’s greatest live shows, in large part to guitarist Coore’s virtuosity and showmanship—not just on the guitar, but also on the electric cello, harmonica, etc.—a fact that may have helped land them some pretty cool TV appearances. We’ve featured one of these before on Throwback Thursdays—their 1982 performance of “Try Jah Love” on sketch comedy show SCTV—so today we figured we’d dig up a few more, thanks to a little help from our friend Heather Cameron.

The first of our two clips here is a real treat. In the late ’70s Dame Shirley Bassey—the Welsh singer best known for singing the themes to the James Bond movies Goldfinger and  Diamonds Are Forever— was given her own show on the BBC, hosted at various locations around the world. For the show’s second season in 1979, she headed to Little Pubs Open Air Disco in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. In this clip from that program, she performs a disco version of “This Is My Love,” walking through the crowd. If that’s not your thing, sit tight, ’cause it’s followed right up by an entrancing performance of “Cool Mediation,” the 1978 Third World hit sung by keyboardist Ibo Cooper. This one is definitely a trip…make sure you watch til the end to see Dame Shirley getting down with some enthusiastic members of the crowd. 

Next up, we’ve got a performance of “Lagos Jump” from Japanese TV sometime in the early 80s. Now, we know how big reggae is in Japan, but this has to be one of the earliest appearances by a Jamaican act on Japanese TV, we’re guessing. Not much information on this one—we can’t even tell you the name of the show, but the foggy, “island in space” set does all of the talking that needs to be done!

Watch, enjoy and make sure to tune into the #LargeUpSessions tonight from 6-8pm EST on RadioLily.com.

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