Fisherman is the licensed reissue of Peter Allen’s achingly rare 1986 release
“Fisherman” is a low-fi proto digital Reggae scorcher which predates the release of King Jammy’s “Sleng Teng” by a full year. Peter Allen released only one tune, recorded at Aquarius Studio in Kingston, Jamaica in 1984. Allen recorded an album’s worth of material with his backing band Food Clothes and Shelter before emigrating to Canada.
Unfortunately Fisherman is the only track that survived after a basement flood in Toronto destroyed his other master tapes.
In 1986 he self-released Fisherman in his new home Toronto on his Ponko Dread label, hand distributing it to local record stores and sound systems. “What is a Ponko Dread?”- The name refers to Peter’s childhood nickname which evolved from the nursery rhyme “Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater” to “Ponko” to Ponko Dread when he grew up to later embrace Rastafari.
Perhaps it was too ahead of its time — or too unusual, with its dirge-like synth and deep roots lyrics — but Fisherman was largely overlooked until a few copies emerged around 5 years ago, becoming coveted grails by European digi collectors with deep pockets. Shella Records located Peter Allen who lives east of Toronto where he drives a school bus and still loves to sing.