Personnel: Peter Tosh (vocals, guitar, keyboards); Al Anderson, Donald Kinsey (guitar); Robbie & Ras Lee (harp); Tyrone Downey (keyboards); Aston "Family Man" Barrett, Robbie Shakespeare (bass); Carlton Barrett, Santa (drums); Rita Marley, Judy Mowatt, Bunny Wailer (background vocals).
Recorded in 1976. Includes liner notes by Roger Steffens.
After spending 12 years as a member of Bob Marley's Wailers, Peter Tosh was eager to break free from the shadow of the legendary frontman. In 1976, he released LEGALIZE IT, still one of the most significant albums in the history of reggae. The title track expresses one of Tosh's many political causes, justifying the legalization of marijuana as a remedy for various medical ailments. "Burial" is one of several tracks that features the talents of the Wailers' stand-out lead guitarist, Al Anderson.
Tosh adds his own seasoning to the reggae pot as he incorporates keyboards in "Whatcha Gonna Do" and synthesizers and sound effects on "Igziabeher." "Ketchy Shuby," a sing-along about fooling around, features the background vocal talents of Rita Marley, Bunny Wailer, and Judy Mowatt. Tosh's life ended too early, and LEGALIZE IT is the strongest testament to his legacy. Take a listen, and share the spirit of his genius.
Spin (p.80) - "On 1976's LEGALIZE IT, he brashly mixed pro-ganja agitprop and Rasta musings..."
CMJ (7/19/99, pp.27,35) - "...among the most crucial reggae albums ever released....LEGALIZE IT prevails to this day as one of the all-time great stoner records, due to its rabidly expressive advocation of the spiritual and mystical wonders of ganja..."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.120) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "The sublime LEGALIZE IT predominantly showcases his spiritual and mischievous aspects, though even here an inescapable melancholy pervades."
Uncut (magazine) (p.84) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[T]here are some appealing, rare dub plates..."