From Our Brother
(1982) released on theFolkways label was the first reggae release in this format and arguably the most fullyrealised reggae recording made in Australia up to that point. Un Tabu did not go on to produce further records and Ras Roni has recorded only sporadically, but his work with the Sydney bands, Resurrectors and more recently The Strides showcase hissongwriting and vocal abilities, factors which remain somewhat elusive for manyAustralian reggae acts.After arriving in Australia in 1985, Zambian multi-instrumentalist Larry Maluma developed a career as a composer, prolific recording artist and video maker. He hascreated a distinctive signature music blending roots reggae, funk and Zambian styles,sings in English and several Zambian languages and returns frequently to his homeland where he has become a much loved expatriate success story. One of the genuine pioneers of the multi-cultural contemporary music scene that come to define Melbourne, Maluma shows no let up in creativity and his most recent album,Tusekelele (Let’s Celebrate) (2009) has received positive local reviews andconsiderable enthusiasm in his Zambian homeland.The drummer and vocalist, Nicholas Caruana aka Nicky Bomba was born in Maltain 1963 and arrived with his parents in Melbourne as a one-year-old. He is best knownas a collaborator with other artists such as John Butler, Joe Camilleri, GeorgeBurrawanga, Israeli producer/musician Laroz Haim, Ethiopian-Australian DerebDesalegn, and the 30-piece Melbourne Ska Orchestra, which he conducts. Starting asa funk musician, he has included various Jamaican styles in his repertoire reggae,rocksteady, ska and perhaps uniquely in Australia – mento, the pre-ska Jamaican equivalent of calypso. Planet Juice, Bomba’s debut solo album (only released in2009) highlights the eclectic exuberance he has shown throughout his career. Like Larry Maluma, Nicky Bomba has shown an individualistic approach to reggae and hehas honed his ability to interpolate Jamaican musical forms into a variety of settings.