Adrian Sherwood

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Adrian Sherwood
Born (1958-01-20) 20 January 1958 (age 61)
Origin London, England
Genres Dub, trip hop, reggae, industrial
Occupation(s)Record producer
Labels On-U Sound Records
Pressure Sounds
Real World Records
Soundboy Records
Hitrun Records
Green Tea Records
Carib Gems
Associated acts Ministry
Suns of Arqa
[1] Mark Stewart + The Maffia
Little Axe
[2] The Process
Website Adrian

Adrian Maxwell Sherwood (born 20 January 1958, London, England) is an English record producer specializing in the genre of dub music. He has created a distinctive production style based on the application of dub effects and dub mixing techniques to other forms of electronic dance music and popular music outside of the genre. He has worked extensively with a variety of reggae artists as well as the musicians Keith LeBlanc, Doug Wimbish and Skip McDonald. Sherwood has remixed tracks by Coldcut, Depeche Mode, The Woodentops, Primal Scream, Pop Will Eat Itself, Sinéad O'Connor, and Skinny Puppy. [3] In his role as a record producer he has worked with a variety of record labels; however, his most well-known label is On-U Sound Records which he founded in 1979. [4] [5] Sherwood has been a member of the band Tackhead. He considers himself tone deaf, and focuses on making sounds and noises rather than melody. [6]

London Capital of the United Kingdom

London is the capital of and largest city in England and the United Kingdom, with the largest municipal population in the European Union. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile (80 km) estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans. The City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles (2.9 km2) and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow closely its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is also an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of London and the London Assembly.

Record producer Individual who oversees and manages the recording of an artists music

A record producer or music producer oversees and manages the sound recording and production of a band or performer's music, which may range from recording one song to recording a lengthy concept album. A producer has many, varying roles during the recording process. They may gather musical ideas for the project, collaborate with the artists to select cover tunes or original songs by the artist/group, work with artists and help them to improve their songs, lyrics or arrangements.

Dub is a genre of electronic music that grew out of reggae in the 1960s, and is commonly considered a subgenre, though it has developed to extend beyond the scope of reggae. The style consists predominantly of instrumental remixes of existing recordings and is achieved by significantly manipulating and reshaping the recordings, usually through the removal of vocals, emphasis of the rhythm section, the application of studio effects such as echo and reverb, and the occasional dubbing of vocal or instrumental snippets from the original version or other works. It was an early form of popular electronic music.



Sherwood was co-founder of Carib Gems and Pressure Sounds, [7] and founder of Hitrun Records as well as Green Tea Records and Soundboy Records. He is also the fourth member of industrial hip-hop outfit Tackhead, credited as "mixologist".

Pressure Sounds is a British DIY record label, specializing in releasing reggae music. Run by Pete Holdsworth, it is one of the most enduring reggae labels in the UK, specializing in reissuing obsolete tunes. It was originally a subsidiary of On-U Sound.

Tackhead is an industrial hip-hop group that was most active during the 1980s and early 1990s, and briefly reformed in 2004 for a tour. Their music occupies the territory where funk, dub, industrial music and electronica intersect. The core members are Doug Wimbish (bass), Keith Leblanc (percussion) and Skip McDonald (guitar) and producer Adrian Sherwood. Despite being short-lived as band proper, the legacy and output of these groups of musicians has been prodigious.

During the early 1980s he brought together many Jamaican artists under the collective name of Singers and Players, including Prince Far I, Mikey Dread, Bim Sherman and many others; this helped promote the individual artists at the same time as promoting the On-U Sound Records label. He also worked with Suns of Arqa on many of their early records. [1]

Jamaica Country in the Caribbean

Jamaica is an island country situated in the Caribbean Sea. Spanning 10,990 square kilometres (4,240 sq mi) in area, it is the third-largest island of the Greater Antilles and the fourth-largest island country in the Caribbean. Jamaica lies about 145 kilometres (90 mi) south of Cuba, and 191 kilometres (119 mi) west of Hispaniola.

Prince Far I was a Jamaican reggae deejay, producer and a Rastafarian. He was known for his gruff voice and critical assessment of the Jamaican government. His track "Heavy Manners" used lyrics against measures initiated towards violent crime.

Mikey Dread Jamaican musician, record producer, and broadcaster

Michael George Campbell, better known as Mikey Dread, was a Jamaican singer, producer, and broadcaster. He was one of the most influential performers and innovators in reggae music.

In 1986, he began working with Jamaican dub producer and singer Lee "Scratch" Perry. They produced the album Time Boom X De Devil Dead.

Lee "Scratch" Perry Jamaican reggae producer

Lee "Scratch" Perry OD is a Jamaican music producer, inventor and singer noted for his innovative studio techniques and production style. Perry was a pioneer in the 1970s development of dub music with his early adoption of remixing and studio effects to create new instrumental or vocal versions of existing reggae tracks. He has worked with and produced for a wide variety of artists, including Bob Marley and the Wailers, Junior Murvin, the Congos, Max Romeo, Adrian Sherwood, the Beastie Boys, Ari Up, The Clash, The Orb and many others.

He made contributions to the industrial genre in his remix of Einstürzende Neubauten's song "Yü Gung" on the album Halber Mensch , as well as his production work with Ministry, Skinny Puppy, Cabaret Voltaire, KMFDM, Terminal Power Company and Nine Inch Nails. Sherwood has also delved into the blues, producing Little Axe's Real World Records release Champagne & Grits in 2006.

Industrial music is a genre of experimental music which draws on harsh, transgressive or provocative sounds and themes. AllMusic defines industrial music as the "most abrasive and aggressive fusion of rock and electronic music" that was "initially a blend of avant-garde electronics experiments and punk provocation". The term was coined in the mid-1970s with the founding of Industrial Records by members of Throbbing Gristle and Monte Cazazza. While the genre name originated with Throbbing Gristle's emergence in the United Kingdom, concentrations of artists and labels vital to the genre also emerged in America, namely in Chicago.

Einstürzende Neubauten German industrial band

Einstürzende Neubauten is a German experimental music group, originally formed in West Berlin in 1980. The group currently is composed of Blixa Bargeld, Alexander Hacke, N.U. Unruh, Jochen Arbeit, and Rudolf Moser.

<i>Halber Mensch</i> 1985 studio album by Einstürzende Neubauten

Halber Mensch is the third studio album by German industrial band Einstürzende Neubauten. It was released on 2 September 1985, through record label Some Bizzare Records.

In 2003, Sherwood supported Blur at Wolverhampton Civic Hall. The same year, Sherwood released his first album as a solo artist, Never Trust a Hippy , which featured collaborations with various artists such as Sly & Robbie, Steven "Lenky" Marsden, Carlton "Bubblers" Ogilvie and Jazzwad.

Blur (band) English rock band fronted by Damon Albarn and one of the pioneering groups of the 1990s britpop scene

Blur are an English rock band, formed in London in 1988. The group consists of singer/keyboardist Damon Albarn, guitarist/singer Graham Coxon, bassist Alex James and drummer Dave Rowntree. Their debut album Leisure (1991) incorporated the sounds of Madchester and shoegazing. Following a stylistic change influenced by English guitar pop groups such as the Kinks, the Beatles and XTC, Blur released Modern Life Is Rubbish (1993), Parklife (1994) and The Great Escape (1995). In the process, the band became central to the Britpop music and culture movement, and achieved mass popularity in the UK, aided by a chart battle with rivals Oasis in 1995 dubbed the "Battle of Britpop".

<i>Never Trust a Hippy</i> (Adrian Sherwood album) 2003 album

Never Trust a Hippy is the first solo album by Adrian Sherwood. It was released on Peter Gabriel's Real World Records label. It includes guest performances by Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare and S. E. Rogie. The album also contains Sherwood's remix of the track "Paradise of Nada" by Rizwan Muazzam Qawwali and Temple of Sound.

Steven "Lenky" Marsden is a Jamaican-born music producer and musician who specializes primarily in dancehall reggae music. He also arranges and remixes pop and hip hop songs. Marsden is the founder of the Jamaica-based label, 40/40 Records and was a former member of singjay Buju Banton's band.

In 2006 he released his second album Becoming a Cliché, again with numerous artists such as Perry, the late Bim Sherman, Dennis Bovell, Little Roy, LSK, Samia Farah, Raiz and Mark Stewart. A limited[ vague ] 2-disc version was released simultaneously with the second disc titled Dub Cliché.

On beginning a solo career, Sherwood stated: "I wanted to do some of my own writing and make something that was challenging for me... As a producer, it's my job to satisfy the artist foremost. I wanted to make something that was a little more aggressive and modern. I wanted to paint a picture that was contemporary, one that specifically showed where my brain was at. I've got to the point in my life where it's time for me to call all of the shots." [8]

He produced the original score for the 2006 independent film Johnny Was , starring Vinnie Jones, Roger Daltrey and Samantha Mumba. Since 2015, Sherwood has been recording with Bristol dubstep artist Pinch; they have released two albums under the moniker "Sherwood and Pinch". [9]

Related Research Articles

Trip hop is a musical genre that originated in the early 1990s in the United Kingdom, especially Bristol. It has been described as "a fusion of hip hop and electronica until neither genre is recognizable", and may incorporate a variety of styles, including funk, dub, soul, psychedelia, R&B, and house, as well as other forms of electronic music. Trip hop can be highly experimental.

Dub Syndicate is a dub band, formed by Adrian Sherwood, which became a showcase for Adrian Sherwood's collaboration with Lincoln "Style" Scott, former drummer with the Roots Radics, Suns of Arqa and Creation Rebel.

Doug Wimbish American musician

Douglas Arthur "Doug" Wimbish is an American bass player, primarily known for being a member of rock band Living Colour and funk/dub/hip hop collective Tackhead, and as a session musician with artists such as Sugarhill Gang, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, The Rolling Stones, Mick Jagger, Depeche Mode, James Brown, Annie Lennox, and Barrington Levy.

Youth (musician) Record producer and founder of Killing Joke

Martin Glover, known by his stage name Youth, is an English record producer and a founder member and bassist of Killing Joke. He is a member of the Fireman, along with Paul McCartney.

On-U Sound Records is an English record label known for releasing its own unique flavour of dub music since the 1980s. The label was founded by Adrian Sherwood in 1979/1980 and is home to acts such as Tackhead, Dub Syndicate, African Head Charge, The London Underground, Little Annie, Creation Rebel, Mark Stewart, Gary Clail, New Age Steppers, Audio Active, Asian Dub Foundation, and the dub collective Singers & Players.

Addiction (Skinny Puppy song) 1987 single by Skinny Puppy

"Addiction" is a song by the band Skinny Puppy, taken from their 1987 album Cleanse Fold and Manipulate. It was released on vinyl in 1987 and released on CD in 1991 (Canada) and 1997. The lyrics of the song quote the 19th century Gothic novel Melmoth the Wanderer by Charles Maturin.

Singers & Players were a reggae collective made up of vocalists and musicians associated with Adrian Sherwood's On-U Sound Records. They recorded five albums between 1981 and 1988.

Little Axe American blues musician

Skip McDonald is an American musician who also performs under the stage name Little Axe.

Neville Beckford, better known as Jah Woosh, was a Jamaican reggae deejay and record producer, primarily known for his work in the 1970s.

Jarret Lloyd Vincent, better known by one of his stage aliases Bim Sherman, was a Jamaican musician and singer-songwriter.

Rob Ellis, better known as Pinch, is a dubstep artist from Bristol, United Kingdom noted for his fusion of styles such as Reggae, World Music, and Dancehall with dubstep. He released his first album, Underwater Dancehall in 2007, on Tectonic records, which he founded. One of Pinch's most well-known tracks is "Qawwali", released on Planet Mu records, which references the devotional singing of the same name and features samples of harmonium and singer Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. His songs appear on compilations such as "Box of Dub: Dubstep and Future Dub 2", "Science Faction: Dubstep", "10 Tons Heavy" and "200". More recently he has moved away from dubstep towards the UK Bass scene, working with producers such as Mumdance and Adrian Sherwood.

Audio Active were a Japanese reggae fusion band who released several albums between the early 1990s and the first decade of the 21st century.

Gary Clail is an English singer and record producer, and the founder of the Gary Clail Sound System. He was part of On-U Sound Records and led Gary Clail's Tackhead Sound System. They had a big hit in clubs with the 1991 song "Human Nature".

<i>Revenge of the Mozabites</i> 1980 studio album by Suns of Arqa

Revenge of the Mozabites is the first studio album by the band Suns of Arqa, recorded in 1979 and released in 1980 by Rocksteady Records. The album was produced by Suns of Arqa founder Michael Wadada, and his friend Adrian Sherwood.

<i>Tackhead Tape Time</i> 1987 studio album by Gary Clails Tackhead Sound System

Tackhead Tape Time is the debut album of Tackhead, released in 1987 through Nettwerk.

Whats My Mission Now? single by Tackhead

"What's My Mission Now?" is a single by the American industrial hip-hop group Tackhead, released in October 1985 on On-U Sound. Scott Becker of Option called it "Sherwood as his outrageous best: wild stereo effects, a crucial beat, a bit of dubbing-it-up, found vocals, odd sounds, the works."

<i>Tackhead Sound Crash</i> 2006 remix album by Tackhead

Tackhead Sound Crash is a remix album by the industrial hip-hop group Tackhead. It was released on November 13, 2006 on Beat and On-U Sound Records.

Fats Comet was a British/American industrial hip hop group formed by Adrian Sherwood, Keith LeBlanc, Skip McDonald and Doug Wimbish. The band was known for producing dance tracks that were densely layered in samples and ahead of their time. In a 1987 article in Spin, Scott Burlingham commented that "songs like "Bop Bop" and "Stormy Weather" are three years old and they still don't fit in." The members eventually shifted their focus to another project Tackhead, under which they continue to produce music.

Strange Parcels was an industrial hip-hop group, formed in 1991. The nucleus was guitarist Skip McDonald, drummer Keith LeBlanc and bassist Doug Wimbish. The group also enlisted the aid of numerous guest musicians, including Mark Stewart, Bim Sherman, Jesse Rae, Talvin Singh and Basil Clarke.


  1. 1 2 "Adrian Sherwood / On-U Sound remix discography - Part 4". On-U Sound In The Area. 2012. Retrieved 18 March 2015.
  2. "As the Veneer of Democracy Starts to Fade - Mark Stewart". AllMusic . 2015. Retrieved 18 March 2015.
  3. Ankeny, Jason. "Biography: Adrian Sherwood". Allmusic . Retrieved 9 April 2010.
  4. "Adrian Sherwood Tickets | Adrian Sherwood Tour Dates & Concerts | Ticketmaster NZ". Retrieved 20 May 2014.
  5. "On-U Sound - CDs and Vinyl at Discogs". Retrieved 20 May 2014.
  6. "Adrian Sherwood @ Dubspot! Interview Workshop Recap: Talks Dub, Music Production". Dubspot Blog. 14 February 2012. Retrieved 18 March 2015.
  7. "Music - Adrian Sherwood". BBC. Retrieved 20 May 2014.
  8. Heselgrave, Douglas (July 2007). "Remixing Adrian Sherwood: Breaking It Down and Going Solo". Music Box Magazine. Archived from the original on 16 July 2007. Retrieved 29 July 2007.
  9. "Sherwood & Pinch - Late Night Endless". Resident Advisor. 23 June 2017.