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Record Rack

Cliff + Kool = Bland

June 19, 1988|DON SNOWDEN

* 1/2"HANGING FIRE. Jimmy Cliff. Columbia. Cliff In a potentially intriguing exercise in cross-cultural cross-pollination, the Jamaican reggae singer enlisted producer Khalis Bayyan--Ronald Bell of Kool & the Gang--to angle for the mainstream black audience in "Hanging Fire," but the results are bland and characterless. "Love Me Love Me" and "Girls and Cars" (the latter an almost surrealistic travelogue in which globetrotter Cliff reflects on the planet's moral malaise with various world leaders) sport two different backing bands from Zaire but the music doesn't sound even remotely African.

CHECK LIST **** Great Balls of Fire *** Good Vibrations ** Maybe Baby * Running on Empty

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