Scientist (musician)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Hopeton Brown
Birth name Hopeton Overton Brown
Also known as Scientist
Born (1960-04-18) 18 April 1960 (age 58)
Origin Jamaica
Genres Reggae, Dub, Dancehall
Labels Dub Мир
Tuff Gong

Hopeton Overton Brown (born 18 April 1960) is a recording engineer and producer best known for the dub music he mixed as "Scientist" in the 1980s. A protégé of King Tubby (Osbourne Ruddock), Brown's contemporaries include several figures who, working at King Tubby's studio, had helped pioneer the genre in the 1970s: Ruddock, Bunny Lee, Philip Smart, Pat Kelly and Prince Jammy. Brown's mixing is notable, in part, for his ability to deconstruct the source material to create sparse, stripped-down arrangements layered with effects (often dramatically changing the tone of the original song).


The 1970s: King Tubby's, Channel One, and Studio One[edit]

Brown was introduced to electronics by his father, who worked as a television and radio repair technician.[1] He began building his own amplifiers and would buy transformers from Tubby's Dromilly Road studio. While at the studio, Brown asked Tubby to give him a chance at mixing. He was taken on at Tubby's as an assistant, performing tasks such as winding transformer coils, and began working as a mixer in the mid-1970s, initially creating dubs of reworked Studio One riddims for Don Mais's Roots Tradition label, given his chance when Prince Jammy cut short a mixing session for Mais because he was too tired to continue.[1] His name originated from a joke between Tubby and Bunny Lee. Having noticed Brown's forward-thinking ideas and technical aspirations, Tubby remarked, "Damn, this little boy must be a scientist."[2]

He left King Tubby's at the end of the 1970s and became the principal engineer for Channel One when hired by the Hoo Kim brothers, giving him the chance to work on a 16-track mixing desk rather than the four tracks at Tubby's.[1][3]

The 1980s: Mixing at King Tubby's, Tuff Gong[edit]

He came to prominence in the early 1980s and produced many albums, his mixes featuring on many releases in the first part of the decade. He made a series of albums in the early 1980s, released on Greensleeves Records with titles themed around Scientist's fictional achievements in fighting Space Invaders, Pac-Men, and Vampires, and winning the World Cup.[1] The music on these albums was played by Roots Radics, his most frequent collaborators. In particular, he was the favourite engineer of Henry "Junjo" Lawes, for whom he mixed several albums featuring the Roots Radics, many based on tracks by Barrington Levy.[1][3] He also did a lot of work for Linval Thompson and Jah Thomas.[1] In 1982 he left Channel One to work at Tuff Gong studio as second engineer to Errol Brown.[1]

Brown emigrated to the Washington, D.C. area in 1985, again to work in studios as a recording engineer.[1]

Licensing issues[edit]

Brown has alleged in court that Greensleeves originally released albums without his knowledge, according to his interview with United Reggae online magazine.[4] Additionally, he has alleged that songs included in the 2001 videogame Grand Theft Auto III from his album Scientist Rids the World of the Evil Curse of the Vampires were licensed from Greensleeves without his consent.[4] Following ongoing legal disputes between Brown and Greensleeves which stemmed from these incidents, the Dub Мир label began working directly with Brown to reissue his best-known work. In 2016, Greensleeves removed the Scientist moniker altogether for a run of reissues, substituting titles such as "Junjo Presents: Wins The World Cup", etc.

Partial discography[edit]

  • Ranking Dread In Dub King Tubby And Scientist (1981)
  • Introducing Scientist: The Best Dub Album in the World (1980)
  • Allied Dub Selection (1980) – with Papa Tad's
  • Heavyweight Dub Champion (1980)
  • Big Showdown at King Tubby's (1980) – with Prince Jammy
  • Scientist Meets the Space Invaders (1981)
  • Scientist Rids the World of the Evil Curse of the Vampires (1981)
  • Scientist Meets the Roots Radics (1981)
  • Scientist in the Kingdom of Dub (1981)
  • Scientific Dub (1981) Tad's
  • Dub Landing Vol. 1 (1981)
  • Yabby You & Michael Prophet Meet Scientist at the Dub Station (1981)
  • First, Second and Third Generation (1981) – with King Tubby and Prince Jammy
  • Dub War (1981)
  • World at War (1981)
  • Dub Landing Vol. 2 (1982) – with Prince Jammy
  • High Priest of Dub (1982)
  • Dub Duel (1982) – with Crucial Bunny
  • Scientist Encounters Pac-Man (1982)
  • The Seducer Dub Wise (1982)
  • Scientist Wins the World Cup (1983)
  • Dub Duel at King Tubby's (1983) – The Professor
  • Scientist & Jammy Strike Back (1983) – with Prince Jammy
  • The People's Choice (1983)
  • Crucial Cuts Vol. 1 (1984)
  • Crucial Cuts Vol. 2 (1984)
  • 1999 Dub (1984)
  • King of Dub (1987)
  • International Heroes Dub (1989)
  • Tribute to King Tubby (1990)
  • Freedom Fighters Dub (1995)
  • Dub in the Roots Tradition (1996)
  • Repatriation Dub (1996)
  • King Tubby Meets Scientist in a World of Dub (1996) – with King Tubby
  • King Tubby's Meets Scientist at Dub Station (1996) – with King Tubby
  • Dubbin With Horns (1995)
  • Dub Science (1997)
  • Dub Science, Dub For Daze, Volume 2 (1997)
  • Scientist Meets the Crazy Mad Professor at Channel One Studio (1997)
  • Respect Due (Joseph I Meets the Scientist in Tribute to Jackie Mittoo) (1999)
  • Mach 1 Beyond Sound Barrier (1999)
  • Scientist Dubs Culture Into a Parallel Universe (2000)
  • All Hail the Dub Head (2001)
  • Ras Portrait (2003)
  • Pockets of Resistance (2003)
  • Scientist Meets The Pocket (2003–2004)
  • Nightshade Meets Scientist (2005) - featuring Wadi Gad
  • Dub From the Ghetto (2006) (compilation)
  • Dub 911 (2006)
  • Scientist Launches Dubstep Into Outer Space (2010)
  • Repatriation Dub (2014)
  • Scientist Meets Nightshade (2014)
  • The Dub Album They Didn't Want You To Hear (2015)
  • The Untouchable (2016)
  • Scientist Meets Hempress Sativa in Dub (2018)


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Barrow, Steve & Dalton, Peter (2004) "The Rough Guide to Reggae", Rough Guides, ISBN 1-84353-329-4
  2. ^ "Interview of Hopeton Brown (Scientist) by Mike Pawka". 1998. Retrieved 2014-02-18. 
  3. ^ a b Larkin, Colin (1998) "The Virgin Encyclopedia of Reggae", Virgin Books, ISBN 0-7535-0242-9
  4. ^ a b Angus Taylor (24 September 2008). "Interview : Scientist". Retrieved 2014-02-18. 

External links[edit]