UPsetter Riddim Shower

ABOUT THE MOVIE: (taken from the dvd inlay)
A spectacular morning in the Swiss Alps. The sun emerges from behind white clouds and shines from a steely blue sky onto the lush green meadows where cows graze contentedly. People from all around the world make a pilgrimage to ask the black-skinned Madonna of Einsiedeln for help and protection.
Within view of the monastery lives a man. Strange objects hang in front of his garage: numerous mirrors, buckets full of water, painted stones, enigmatic sentences in large letters on the walls and windows. His beard is dyed violet, his hair red, green and yellow. A miraculous cap rests on his head: it is covered with stars of David, crowns, mirrors and portraits of the last Ethiopian emperor, Haile Selassie, and of himself.
At a postcard-perfect beach, Jamaica: sunshine, blue skies, blue sea, the paradise on earth. Lee Perry grew up in utter poverty during a time when Jamaica was still a colony of the British Empire. He left school early, unwilling to deal with a Victorian school system and discipline. Music and church are the centerpieces of Jamaican life in rural areas till today – the only way for a young Jamaican to escape the endless cycle of poverty and criminality.
In 1962 Jamaica formally gained its independence and the island, in its enthusiasm, searched for cultural identification. It was strongly influenced by the likes of Marcus Garvey and Ras Makkonen Tafari (Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia), who prophesized the liberation of the black race. "I don't know who has sent him to me," Lee Perry tells the camera about his encounter with Bob Marley, "but what we did was a revolution, not a revolution to kill people, it was a spiritual revolution, against parasites and vampires, against the heads of governments and council of churches."
He continues: "I had the order to build my studio in my own backyard. The Black Ark had the duty to protect the original Jah soundtrack, music that came from far beyond, from a time without problems, a time when men and animals lived in peace, a time without greed and jealousy, before the original sin was committed." Perry was virtually creating a theology of music: “Music as the Holy Ghost can do anything.”
The Black Ark Studio became the creative and spiritual centre of Jamaica. What happened there really does enter the realm of the legendary and fabulous. Though many have attempted, the way the unique sound was produced at the Black Ark cannot be explained. One morning everything changed: the legendary Black Ark Studio stood ablaze and Perry found himself alone, without a studio, without a family, and without friends. The temple has been dirtied, the movement sold.
Desperate, he fled to London, the London of the Eighties into the heart of boundless capitalism. “I am a Madman”, he sings, “to come to cool the bad ones...” In order for the good to win, he had to understand the “ways of evil”. And he also came for revenge...
His philosophy developed. In front of the Buckingham Palace, there is a lion of Judah, the symbol of the House of David, and crest of Haile Selassie. Are they the heirs of the throne of King Salomon? Are they selected from God and therefore legitimate to rule or even own the world?
“Jah Rastafari is the sun, the sun that shines”, says Lee Perry. “Good over evil, right over wrong. They always want to know who King Salomon is, because King Salomon has the key…” Lee Perry leads us to a room which no-one has ever been allowed to enter before. This is where his 'secret spirit guide' lives. “I came here to full the prophecy…" We are speechless. We take a closer look at the black statue in its splendid robe. She is surrounded by clouds, lightning ashes, and hearts, all in gold. “These are the arrows of wrath from our Lord that the Madonna turns into arrows of mercy... that's why people come here” says the priest of the monastery, “they ask for mercy...”

A story that is almost impossible to believe: a revelation, told about and with one of the major protagonists of contemporary music, it is an encounter with the major icon of the international Rastafari movement, a historical protagonist of the Black Power movement and the man who invented reggae and dub. The movie is a guide for how to change the world with music – with positivity, or, as Lee Perry calls it a “vibration”.

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