Hot Milk and the Studio – Jackie Mittoo

Posted by on Mar 18, 2013 in Studio Stories | No Comments

Why is your studio called Hot Milk Studio? People have asked me where our name comes from. Actually, there are two sources. One is from the milk steamer we originally had to make our cappucinos with. Back in those days we spent more time making/consuming coffee and discussing mic preamps than actually recording. Ah, to be young and careless. But the steamer broke and we got way busier. Go figure?

But throughout my young and late-mid phase (think lower mids, upper mids on the EQ scale), I’ve always been a fan of late-great reggae organist Jackie Mittoo from Jamaica. He was a co-founding member of the Skatalites and composed/produced an enormous amount of material for Clement Dodd’s Studio One label. Jacki Mittoo’s discography is pretty overwhelming to say the least but he still is not that well known outside of reggae aficionado circles.

Jackie Mittoo- Hot Milk Man

Jackie Mittoo – Hot Milk Man

Jackie Mittoo moved to Canada in the 70s where he later composed songs such as “North of The Sun”. As a Canadian, it’s easy for me to understand where he came up with that title just thinking about a cold, white winter in Toronto or Winnipeg (where I grew up) compared with a warm, (relatively) sunny winter in Jamaica.

Where am I going with this? Well, he composed a song called “Hot Milk” way back when and re-recorded it a few times along the way. My favourite version is the one he did with Sly & Robbie on And I’ve always loved the easy-going melody, a bit kitschy perhaps but that’s never bothered me. Plus the riddim of the track has been used and re-used in countless other tracks in the great Jamaican way. Have I mentioned that I don’t like Jamaican music. I love it!

Have a listen here:

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