Inner Circle

Any group that's been together for three-plus decades is bound to go through some sonic shifts. The legendary reggae band Inner Circle isn't exempt from these laws of music physics, as anyone who's followed the band can attest. When its career got off the ground in the late '60s and early '70s, it was one of the hardest-hitting bands to represent the roots sound of Jamaica. With large and animated frontman Jacob "Killer" Miller belting out tunes like "All Night Till Day Light" and "I Am a Rastaman," the band captured the hearts of reggae fans all over the Caribbean and enjoyed its truest sound. When Miller was killed in a car accident in 1980, the band went into a six-year hiatus and reemerged in 1986 with a new singer and much stronger commercial appeal. The band's biggest hits, such as "Bad Boys" and "Sweat (A La La La La La)," came during this period even as its sound was watered down. The band has since relocated to Miami, and in addition to the Circle House studios it operates in that burg, it's also got a new album in the works that signals a return to the fire-blazing Inner Circle of years past.

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Jonathan Cunningham