Toppa Top 8: Don Corleon Selects His Favorite Dub Records + Exclusive Interview

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June 21, 2011

8. Chalawa, Exodus Dub


Iโ€™m not even sure when this is from [but] Protoje made me hear it, and I love it. Protoje is very big in dub. He has everything heโ€™s one of the people who really influenced me to do this dub album, too.

LargeUp: What made you decide to make a dub album in 2011?
Don Corleon: Basically my love to experiment in reggae music and learn the whole culture and history about everything. As far as that, I usually listen to dub a lot. From there, I just said, Yo…I want to do this thing. From a long time ago, I havenโ€™t been letting out my riddim versions so everything on this album is really hard to find. That was the plan from a very long time ago.

LU: Dub is a Jamaican form but it’s rare to hear dub from Jamaica anymore. The dub records you hear tend to come out of Europe. Do you think there is a market for it?
DC: Iโ€™m not doing it to sell music. Iโ€™m doing it to preserve my culture, understand me? Me being a very influential producer to certain young producers too, thatโ€™s why I decided to continue this thing that these people did like Scientist, Mad Professor and King Tubbyโ€™s. I would like to continue that type of legacy in the business.

LU: When you were a young music fan would you seek out dub versions?
DC: I wasnโ€™t really big into dub back then but a couple of them.

LU: How can young reggae/dancehall producers add to their skill set by familiarizing themselves with dub?
Itโ€™s a skill that was created in Jamaica through reggae music. And also it can teach a lot of things about dynamics, about shaping sounds–how to set reverb properly. Because dub delay has a very intricate role in dub. Those things teach you to improve your craft. Put it this way, you may not be doing dub, but when I set an EQ, I just think dub and it really helps me in that way.

LU: What are the the tools a producer needs today to make dub?
DC: Actually, the whole of my album was made straight in ProTools, hence the name Dub In HD. I love what all these producers like Tubbyโ€™s and Scientist and people were doing. I wanted to keep it original so I had to add a likkle something to it. Basically you have to have a good delay, vintage reverb plug-ins. You can find things like that on the Internetโ€”a dub reverb or delay.

LU: What are you doing differently when youโ€™re making a dub version versus building a typical riddim track?
Normally, I tend to drive the drum and bass really heavy in the mix. Well, different than I always do. It all has to do with effects, delay. It depends on the vibeโ€”sometimes I phase stuff, I put delays on the pianos or the guitar or snare even.