from the mouth of Fizzè hisself:
"The idea for Peeni Waali was born out of a series of chain-reactions, coincidences, luck - I guess - and fast moves discovering Jamaica. "
"Embryo of the project were isolated compositions for a short movie (Paper Mensch) and TV-work I've done in Saudi Arabia in 1981."
"I went to Jamaica in '87. When I arrived in Jamaica, I was fortunate enough to meet a 'tourist guide', who prevented me from much hassle, hustle and bustle - Bruce Harris - a raggamuffin' - the usual 'Jamaican tourist routine'. However, Bruce was sly and not really the prototype of ‘rent a dread’. We roamed in a di bush a wholleepa time and I fell in love at first sight with those 'Peeni Waalis' (fireflies also eekamouse)."
"Bruce introduced me (the first day!) to the late producer W. 'Jack Ruby' Lindo (e.g. Steel Pulse). We went to a rehearsal of three guys up in a di hills and experience a triggering encounter, propelling out a concept for an extraordinary journey into differences within cultures. It was my first encounter with real roots reggae. A day later I went back and talked with the boys. We decided to work together if possible and I enrolled 4 month of an intense 'reggae-crash-course' in Jamaica before going back to Switzerland to record some riddim tracks. "
"... eventually I met Rico Rodriguez. (R.I.P. - he passed away at my birthday in 2015!) and arranged the logistics for him to come to Switzerland to front a local band and record some music and went back to Jamaica in early '88."
"I met my three friends from the hills again but learned, that in the meantime they had signed with a major label. Our initial plan couldn't work. So I went to Kingston to meet Rico again. "
"Rico introduced me to percussion player Leon 'Scully' Simms. With Robbie Shakespeare we built up that riddim track at Gussy's studio down Slipe Road 56! By coincidence, Dean 'Big D' Frazer was just finishing a session there and hung around a bit after. He joined the party and blew us all away with his trademark sax playing: a song was born from out of everybody, free like an impro, original like nothing was premeditated, hence the title "A Noh Nottn' "..."
"Rico also introduced me to Leroy 'Horsemouth' Wallace with whom I was to become very good friends. Hassy and I would roam Kingston in the wickedest places and enjoyed a great time. Obviously, later on Hassy kicked in some wonderful drums for me. Another good friend of Rico was Felix 'Deadly' Headly who played his soulful sax for me on more than one occasion. "
"Back in Switzerland, I moved from Neuchâtel to Jenins (in eastern Switzerland). One day, Jerome Van Jones would come over for Rico's birthday and played my old C-3 Hammond making everybody feel real close to genuine jazz; a vivid déjà-vu for me since I used to run a little record shop inside a jazz club back in Neuchâtel (Jazzland) with the late drummer Denis Progin. "
"Knowing Rico had played on most of Linton Kwesi Johnson's albums - I've contacted Linton. At the same time, Swiss TV approached me for a "Legalize It" show where they wanted to include some Swiss/Jamaican music connection. Rico was to play with a little local band from Neuchâtel but Rico went back to Jamaica two days before the show (being tired of shoe-lacing said local band), so we arranged for L.K.J. and his own band to play the show. Eventually, after a soulful meeting with Linton and his incredible associate Dennis Bovell, "Beacon of Hope" fell off the cradle..."
"Privileged to feature an abundance of craftsmanship, it was a big treat to relate to all these genuine people. The challenge of making an album by coloring, flavoring and assembling all sorts of elements in one concept was an incredible task, yet unconventional and gratifiying; demanding love for detail, humbleness and courtesy."
"Naturally, when you come to Jamaica and mention you're into music you'll be quickly introduced to musicians. Hence, Jack Ruby introduced me to Jackie Mittoo and many others."
Peeni Waali – A Magic Meeting with…, Blue Moon Productions BM151, 1991.
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Beacon of Hope – (lyrics by Linton Kwesi Johnson, music by Fizzè & Dizzi) snaredrum: Gilles 'Dizzi' Rieder / bass: Dennis Bovell / trombone: Rico Rodriguez accordion: Alig / ukulele: Cérdric Vuille / guitar: Lorenz Vuille / milkpots: Pascal Cuche / percussion: Dizzi, D. Bovell & Fizzè / keyboards: Fizzè
Skarab (Fizzè) – percussion: Dizzi, P. Cuche, Fizzè & Scully / bass: Robbie Shakespeare / choir: Catherine Broillet-Mathey, Anne Lehmann, Françoise Borioli / keyboards: Fizzè
Ricochet (Rico) – snare drum: Dizzi / trombone: Rico / programming, bass & keyboards: Fizzè
Licht & Stein (words by Rainford Perry, music by Fizzè & Dizzi) – vocal: Lee 'Scratch' Perry / balafones: Dizzi, Christion Addor & Olivier Meury / horns of Liechtenstein: Hans Hämmerle (trumpet) & Gerhard Lampert (trombone) / bass, guitar & perc.: D. Bovell / drums: Bazz Smith / timbales: Dizzi / keyboards: Peter Weber & Fizzè
Peeni Waali version (Fizzè / Dizzi) – trombone: Rico / clarinet: C. Vuille / balafon, sanza & percussion: Dizzi / bass, accordion, kalimba, percussion & sax: Fizzè
Paper Mensch (Fizzè) voice: Rams / trombone: Rico / drums & percussion: Dizzi / bass: D. Bovell / guitars: Momo Rossel & C. Vuille / keyboards, blown bottles, zither & perc.: Fizzè
A Noh Nottn ( Fizzè) – sax: Dean Frazer / brass: Rico & Felix 'Deadly' Headley Bennet / bass: Robbie Shakespeare / ukulele & accoustic guitar: C. Vuille / el. guitar: L. Viennet / percussion: Scully / drums: Dizzi / keyboards: Fizzè
Irish Irie [Pub Dub] (Fizzè) – trombone & funda: Rico / sax: Deadly Headley / violin: Christoph Habegger / ukulele: C. Vuille / harp: Asita / accordion: Alig / cabassa: Scully / drums & spoons: Dizzi / keyboards & flute: Fizzè
Rockaman Soul (Fizzè) – trombone & percussion: Rico / guitar: Martin Millar / drums: Phil Santschi / bass, keyboards & flute: Fizzè
Satin Doll (Duke Ellington) – trombone: Rico / Hammond C3: Jerôme Van Jones / bass & guitar: Dennis Bovell / drums: Bazz Smith / keyboards: Fizzè
Mini Mali (Dennis Bovell) – drums: Dizzi / bass & guitar: D. Bovell / keyboards: Fizzè
bonus tracks –
Version of Hope (lyrics by Linton Kwesi Johnson, music by Fizzè & Dizzi) – snaredrum: Gilles 'Dizzi Rieder / bass: Dennis Bovell / trombone: Rico Rodriguez accordion: Alig / ukulele: Cérdric Vuille / guitar: Lorenz Vuille / milkpots: Pascal Cuche / percussion: Dizzi, D. Bovell & Fizzè / keyboards: Fizzè
Rockaman Dub 1 (Fizzè) – trombone & percussion: Rico / guitar: Martin Millar / drums: Phil Santschi / bass, keyboards & flute: Fizzè
A Noh Nottn Dub ( Fizzè) – sax: Dean Frazer / brass: Rico & Felix 'Deadly' Headley Bennet / bass: Robbie Shakespeare / ukulele & accoustic guitar: C. Vuille / el. guitar: L. Viennet / percussion: Scully / drums: Dizzi / keyboards: Fizzè
Peeni Waali (Fizzè / Dizzi) – voice: Antonio 'Bruce' Harris / trombone: Rico / clarinet: C. Vuille / balafon, sanza & percussion: Dizzi / bass, accordion, kalimba, percussion & sax: Fizzè